G’day guys. Mitch here. We’re all here reading this blog because we’re all fans of fine liquor. The breeds of refined alcohol that make adulthood bearable. But what else makes life tolerable is that drink we have the second when we get out of bed, rather than collapse into it.
Coffee, is just another one of those substances we grow up surrounded by as children having little to no frame of reference, and as we grow into adulthood consume habitually on a daily basis. Another socially-acceptable drug, although that term varies from country to country, state to state and by household. It varies in importance with individuals. Some couldn’t care less, some like me, need it to roll out of bed without slipping back to sleep. Coffee is a fruit, like many others. And like many important consumable products tied back to the plants they grow from, great attention to details and pride goes into the coffee plants, akin to the attention and devotion maintained by vineyards. Artificial additives to the soil and irrigation are frowned upon. The quality and microclimate of the soil in which the plant is planted affects the quality of the beans greatly. These little brown beans are in fact the seeds within the fruit. The coffee tree, is typically a tropical shrub, growing lucratively in the tropical and subtropical corners of the globe, as shown by the known pedigree of Peruvian, Kenyan, Rwandan, Nicaraguan, Brazilian and Indian coffee. The coffee cherries, depending on the species of the plant, in the case of your faithful Arabica beans, they fruit round red cherries, that once fully ripened bear their seeds within, the coffee beans. The cherries, traditionally as they are harvested are cleaned and left to dry in the sun on bricks or concrete, and are turned to dry evenly, like the maltmen turning the grains of malting barley. In this day and age, the more modern, technology-enabled method is for machines to simply squeeze the beans free of the cherries. The beans, as they are liberated from the fruit of the plant, are not immediately ready to be packaged and hauled off to export. At this stage the beans are still green. The coffee beans are then roasted, where here they become the aromatic dark brown beans they’re to be known as, where the variables of roasting play part to affect the character of the beans. It’s now, that the beans are packaged and taken away. From then on, the destiny of the beans is at the mercy of the clientele. From espresso, lattes, liqueurs. Or, if the beans have committed great sins against their kind, they are made into instant coffee. Something I’ve discovered recently is the cold brew method. Something that now that I’ve started, makes nothing but sense in the harsh heat of the day that in the dry summer months seemingly heats up earlier and earlier. The notion that I had previously, in hindsight, had brewed coffee hot in a percolator in the mornings of days that were to be unquestionably sweltering, unquestioningly now strikes me as an imbecilic sheeple. But this website isn’t called Roast Coffee Chris. Mainly as that is not my name. We’re here for the feature bottle; the Meukow Xpresso liqueur. A coffee liqueur Cognac, from the Tsar’s label.
After this website’s slew of wine-related articles I thought it only smart to pivot the website to another brandy. Or in this case, a coffee liqueur Cognac. There’s a fair share of coffee liqueurs, standalone and partnered with other beloved spirits, such as Bailey’s coffee flavoured liqueur, Hellyers Road’s whisky coffee cream liqueur, Patrón’s XO Cafe tequila. And I think we’re all aware of the plentiful cocktail existing revolving round coffee. I’ve avoided writing about liqueurs in the past for reasons that will become obvious. While every bottle on a store shelf comes compared to others. Wine, whiskey, what have you. But there would be hundreds upon hundreds of determining factors surrounding any number of liquors. A liquor’s quality is tied to the very quality of it’s sum ingredients. The soil in which it is grown, the maintenance, species and health of the plant, what part of the world it’s from. So every single one of those bottles are all different, all individuals in their entirety. Liqueur, by comparison, simply comes as what’s on the tin. If you were to take, say, a chocolate liqueur, you would hardly spend great energy seeking out the opinion of others to hunt for a review of that, to verify that by “chocolate” it does not mean cauliflower or zucchini. A frivolous and pointless activity. I see no harm in reviewing this article as firstly – Coffee is open to interpretation. Coffee could be anything. Not only does coffee, as a fruit, vary in quality by plant, but also in the country of origin and the method of preparation. In this case, “Xpresso”. Espresso has always struck me as the hipster’s coffee, but this does come accompanied with Meukow. Perhaps the Russkiye’s like their coffee as they do their vodka, short neat and strong.
Without having drank this, or any coffee liqueur for that matter, I’m not one hundred percent on how it is made. I can’t imagine that manufacturers brew hundreds of liters of coffee and then distill it into spirits to blend with the distillate of their other liquors, as I would assume this sort of repeated boiling would have to affect the taste negatively. My assumption is that the coffee is ground and steeped into the liquor to taste, as this would explain the drop from the Cognac’s typical forty percent alcohol to twenty percent through absorption, like with oaking.
The exterior of the bottle is a frosty grey in appearance. The trademark leopard stretching across the sides the only part of the bottle which is transparent, through it I observe a dark and stormy jet-black coloured liqueur. Upon opening the nose is amix of the tones plentiful of both parties. Many dark, rich and confectionery aromas. Hot cooking chocolate, thick hot caramel, and a hint of orange. Not knowing whether in the case of this Cognac coffee liqueur to use a liqueur glass or a tumbler, I use a tumbler and pour the liqueur over ice. The nose swells to a thick carpeting aroma of dark roasted coffee. Very appetizing. So I sip. The taste of the liqueur is dominated by an all-consuming abundance of unadulterated caramel flavor, in all its glory. With a last exiting spice of hot minced pie, as typical of the Meukow.
The summary: The combination of the Meukow Cognac and the infusion of coffee have come together to create a liquor that very nearly comes close to being even better than the sum of their parts. The lush flirtatious sweetness of the drink is rivalled only by the unaccompanied original product. The question of where I were to recommend this is without doubt.
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