After two weeks of Armagnac let’s go back to Calvados Wednesdays for a bit. You may recall that my first Calvados review was of the new release of Domaine Hubert from K&L. You may also recall that I expressed some skepticism about the claim that this was essentially the same as their original release of Domaine Hubert, which had a vintage stated and was 6-7 years old. It certainly didn’t taste like it was very much more than four years old. Well, Florin, winner of the second season of Celebrity Apprentice, is a big fan of that 2006 Hubert and insisted that I try that one as well. (By the way, I’d sent him a sample of the new Hubert and he shared my reservations about it, though he did like it more.) He gave me a sample and here I am now with a review. I tasted it alongside a pour of the recent version. It couldn’t be done blind because the difference is obvious before you even taste them: the 2006 vintage is much darker—make of that what you will…
Domaine Hubert, 2006 (42%; bottled for K&L; from a sample from a friend)
Nose: Baked apple, toffee, cinnamon, light maple syrup. A faint gasoline whiff but none of the spirity, new make’y quality of the recent batch. As it sits there’s some oak as well. With a lot more time it gets brighter with green apple notes.
Palate: A similar story on the palate with richer notes of baked apple and more spice and just enough wood to frame it all. Nice mouthfeel. As on the nose, it gets brighter with time and there’s some pepper too now. With even more time it gets sharper and more spirity and is closer to the 2016 release now.
Finish: Medium. No new notes show up but the notes from the palate hold up well. And with time it gets a little bit too sharp here as well.
Comments: This is much better than the 2016 release that I purchased a bottle of and if the two are the same age as K&L claim then I can only assume that there’s massive inconsistency in Domaine Hubert’s product. It’s possible, I suppose, that this is younger Calvados with some older stuff in it that irons out the youth that is so obvious in the 2016 bottling—whatever the explanation, this is much better: far less raw with much better body. As with the 2016, however, this is not one to dawdle with: it got sharper as it sat.
Rating: 82 points.
Thanks to Florin for the sample!