Rosemary, Maggie and I got together on a Saturday evening with the purpose of trying the Copper & Kings Apple Brandies and pairing them with a cigar. I lined up three versions of the Copper & Kings Apple Brandy and asked for recommendations for three cigars and here is what I came up with for the evening.
Copper & Kings Unaged Apple Brandy: 90 proof. Unchill filtered. Nose: Apples and brown sugar. Taste: Sweet caramel apple and baking spice. Finish: Slightly spicy with apple and nutmeg.
Floodwall Apple Brandy aged in Bourbon Barrels and Sherry casks: 100 proof. Nose: Caramel apples and spice. Taste: Sweet caramel apple and a hint of cinnamon and nuts. Finish: Long. Starts sweet with apple and crème Brule’ but dries out with oak and spice.
Three Marlenas Apple Brandy aged in Tequila barrels: 100 proof. Nose: Pine, cinnamon and green apple. Taste: A hint of pine with apples and baking spices. Finish: Buttery with apple and spice.
I asked three different people for a cigar to pair with these apple brandies. They are Maggie Kimberl, my favorite cigar guru, Jeff Mouttet from Riverside Cigar Shop and Lounge and Match Cigar Bar, and Jason Shepherd of J. Shepherd Cigars.
Maggie’s Suggestion: Fuente 8-5-8 Sungrown: The smoke is cool but filled with cedar and spice with a hint of chocolate.
Jeff’s Suggestion: RoMa Craft Cro-Magnon: The smoke is very earthy with some cedar and spice and dark chocolate.
Jason’s Suggestion: Ashton Maduro: The smoke was sweet vanilla and baking spices.
My notes on the pairing are a little different from Maggie’s notes. We both thought each cigar went best with a different brandy but we differed a little on the pairings. Here are the pairings and how I paired them:
Unaged Apple Brandy
The Fuente made the brandy taste of apple pie with a little caramel sauce drizzled over it and the brandy took the cedar out of the smoke but brought forward the chocolate and spice.
The RoMa Craft really brought forward the apple and some caramel or brown sugar in the brandy while the brandy made the smoke cooler and sweeter.
The Ashton Maduro made the brandy taste of candied apple slices – sun dried and rolled in brown sugar, while the brandy made the smoke more complex with some earthy notes and vanilla.
I liked the RoMa Craft best with this brandy whereas Maggie preferred the Ashton.
Floodwall Apple Brandy
The Fuente made the brandy taste of apple pie with a scoop of caramel ice cream and the brandy really brought forward the chocolate in the smoke.
The RoMa Craft made the brandy taste of ripe apple, oak and crème Brule’ while the brandy made the smoke taste of vanilla and chocolate like a truffle candy.
The Ashton Maduro made the brandy rich with chocolate and apples while the brandy made the smoke cool with a hint of vanilla.
Maggie and I agreed that this brandy went very well with all three cigars but liked the Fuente best.
Three Marlenas Apple Brandy
The Fuente brought out the Tequila in the brandy with some spiced apple notes and the brandy really did nothing for the smoke.
The RoMa Craft took out the pine in the brandy and made it more of a citrus flavor while the brandy made the smoke a bit more earthy in a good way, making it rich and flavorful.
The Ashton Maduro made the brandy taste of candy apple rich in caramel and fruit while the brandy made the smoke more spicy and flavorful.
My favorite for this brandy was the Aston Maduro whereas Maggie preferred RoMa Craft.
These Apple Brandy and Cigar pairings were all very good and I would not belittle any of the cigars with any of these three brandies. Thank you Maggie, Jeff and Jason for three very fine recommendations of cigars to pair with apple brandy from Copper & Kings.