Malternative Belgium, independent bottler of cognac
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cognac #1 Le début - Malternative Belgium - 49%

cognac #1 Le début - Malternative Belgium - 49%
cognac #1 Le début - Malternative Belgium - 49%
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Héritage de René Rivière Avant 1925 - 49% alcohol - 70cl - cru : borderies - one of 66 bottles

€ 399,00
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49% alcohol - 70cl - cru : borderies - one of 66 bottles
Distilled before 1925 - kept in dame jeanne since 1983

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Knapen Pieter - 07-05-2021 10:13

Le blog à Roger, https://leblogaroger.eu, 03/06/2020
Nose: At the opening of the sample, directly no doubt for me, we are in the presence of a cognac, and it looks very fruity, exotic limit … I love cognacs in this style! Exotic fruits so with passion, mango, guava, papaya, citrus, peach, apricots … it is very fruity and a tangy candy / cola aspect. Behind that, as the frame we find a fine caramelized, wood, a few more notes on milk chocolate, tobacco and a little pepper. The alcohol is really melted, I would say a little 40-43% in terms of alcohol levels, but it’s still very complicated with old spirits. A very fragrant nose therefore, seductive, elegant and delicious.
Palate: Very sweet, more woody than the nose with a nice chocolatey frame, tobacco, toffee. The contrast between the nose and the mouth is quite marked … we are traveling to something else there.The fruits are quite present but more stewed with always these apricots, quetsche and these exotic fruits as desired. We always find this harlequin candy side in fact, very fragrant and a freshness more than astonishing compared to the great age of this spirit.
The finish is very long for a very well integrated alcohol. Pwa it’s good … I stay on my first impression, it is of course a cognac.
Conclusion:Result, yes it is indeed a cognac… and a very old cognac even because it does not date from 1929 but from 1925!
This is the first opus of the youngest on the place of bottlers in Belgium, Malternative Belgium, not far from my home. And as the name suggests, it will not be whisky but a cognac from Héritage by René Rivière. Measuring 49%, this venerable cognac has been bottled 66 times from a Dame Jeanne which dates it from 1983. This brandy would therefore have remained 58 years in barrel and was distilled over 95 years ago! Always a great time to taste such monuments.
Score: 93/100

Knapen Pieter - 12-05-2020 13:01

Angus MacRaild, www.whiskyfun.com, 26/04/2020
A very new bottling from the cool folk at Malternative Belgium. Distilled prior to 1925 and put into glass in 1981. Colour: light amber. Nose: a delicate and impeccably balanced ‘muddle’ of preserved fruits, crystallised citrus rinds, dried exotic fruits, exotic fruit teas, syrups, cordials and rather direct notes of chamomile and bergamot. Wonderfully elegant and deeply complex. Peaches and cream, mango chutney and the most ancient of herbal liqueurs - long aged yellow Chartreuse perhaps. Quite beautiful. Mouth: tinned peaches, mango, praline, wood spices, orange liqueurs, jasmine tea, quince jelly and these wonderful notes of aged ointments and herbal extracts. All manner of tiny fruit notes as well which create in impressive level of complexity. There’s also those wonderful earthy/leathery/tobacco combinations that really sing with age in Cognacs. And the strength carries everything with such power and aplomb. Finish: long, herbal, spicy, lots of jellied fruits and various aromatic teas. Comments: Terrific, the depth of flavour and complexity and really show-stopping.
SGP: 651 - 92 points.

Knapen Pieter - 19-04-2020 11:02

Serge Valentin, www.whiskyfun.com, 19/04/2020
How could I be against anything called ‘Malternative’? No need to be fluent in French to understand that this was distilled ‘before 1925’, which does not mean that this baby’s 95 years of age as it had been kept in demi-johns for around forty years prior to bottling. Which, frankly, is rather good news. Colour: deep gold. Nose: exceptional nose, incredibly fresh and deep at the same time, with first this perfect quince-apricot-peach combination, then those tiny herbs, berries and leaves that suggest perfect maturation (mint, touch of myrtle, wormwood…), then dried fruits as expected (figs, dates, raisins), then flowers. Orange blossom first, then ylang-ylang like in some old rums. A little fresh tobacco too (old-style Bensons, I would say) and a hint of marrow quenelles. Very complex, but not much rancio. No problems at all! Mouth: it’s the freshness that’s really impressive, and the fruits. This is a very fruity drink! More quinces, big juicy blood oranges, the usual peaches and apricot, ripe greengages, a tiny touch of guava, and once again those herbs that would add so much complexity to any spirit (and that you’ll never find in a young malt or bandy). Around eucalyptus and verbena, but with moderation. Finish: medium, fresh, and just very similar, which is great news. Perhaps a little more honey, and just tiny oaky/tannic/peppery tones. Comments: you imagine well some moustachioed (why?) grandpa down there around Charentes stating, back in the late 1970s, ‘let’s disgorge this cask and put the Cognac into demijohns for the future generations!’ Grandpas are always the smartest…
SGP:641 - 91 points.

Knapen Pieter - 15-03-2020 08:27

Ruben Luyten, www.whiskynotes.be, 03/03/2020:
Héritage de René Rivière cognac ‘Avant 1925’ Borderies (49%, Malternative 2020, 66 btl.)
Nose: superb elegance. There are apples, apricots and orange peels, hints of honeysuckle and subtle floral notes (elderflower perhaps, and old roses). Fruit tea. Wax candles. Rubbed mint leaves and verbena. Soft spice and sandalwood. A subtle dusty note too, I like that. Excellent. Mouth: wow, really. Similar fruity notes (apricots, mirabelles, apples), then eucalyptus and mint. The third wave is slightly tropical (passion fruits, pink grapefruit). The oak is firmer now, it’s quite punchy after so many years, with some resinous notes, rancio and peppery touches, but never loosing the balance and impeccable freshness. Finish: long, with some citrus, apple peel, delicate tannins and cinnamon.
What a (re-)start! A glorious expression of Borderies, with an exquisite profile and balance. Around € 400, not cheap but quite fair considering the age, I think.

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