The pear gets minimal respect in the booze biz. Heck, even apples have high-end brandies dedicated to them — in multiple countries, no less. In comparison, pear brandies are normally unaged quickie spirits. Finding a pear spirit that’s spent time in oak is almost unheard of. Craft Distillers’ Joe Corley cares not for any of this: He’s put together this limited edition aged pear liqueur (not a straight brandy), and it’s a mighty success.
Inspired by the pear liqueur of the same name from the now defunct RMS Distillery in Napa (sold only at its tasting room, it was never released to the open market), Corley uses Lake County and Mendocino County Bartlett pears as the basis for this rich and exotic liqueur.
As you’d expect, it features fresh pear, but there’s plenty more here, including an undercarriage of licorice and herbs, perhaps eucalyptus, on the nose. The body is full of fruit, plus lots of earthy honey that rumbles along later. There’s a fresh finish, not at all cloying, with tons of body to it, in the end.
If you like pears — or even merely tolerate them in the occasional dessert — this is a spirit to seek out. First bottling of 1200 half-bottles will be available in major metro markets.
A- / $24 (375ml) / craftdistillers.com