L’Encantada Renaissance: Cassou, Lous Pibous, Cutxan

L’Encantada Renaissance: Cassou, Lous Pibous, Cutxan

Armagnac pioneer L’Encantada released the Renaissance Collection 2023. This small series consists of three top-of-the-range armagnacs, which come in beautiful bottles with hand-painted labels.

They chose spirits between 17 and 35 years of age. All three were distilled from different grapes at the domains Cassou, Cutxan and Lous Pibous. You can buy them separately (from the L’Encantada shop or retailers) but they’re also available as a set for around € 650.



Domaine del Cassou 35 yo 1987 (47,4%, L’Encantada ‘Renaissance’ 2023, Baco, cask #5, 400 btl.)

Nose: nice sultanas, sweet cherries, quinces and tinned apricots. Really fruity, with a nice jammy side. Hints of butter toffee and light tobacco leaves, as well as hints of marzipan. Then some aniseed and coppery notes in the distance. Excellent.

Mouth: still really fruity, with plenty of apricots and hints of pineapple, mango and orange peels. On the other hand also rather loud liquorice notes, with peppermint, aniseed and a little pine resin, adding a touch of bitterness. Thick pastry notes, tobacco and roasted nuts underneath.

Finish: long, getting more peppery and grassy, with dried fruits in the background.

A really good armagnac that displays fruits and herbs with a nice, fatty texture. A name to remember, and a great start of this session.



Domaine Cutxan 17 yo 2005 (50,2%, L’Encantada ‘Renaissance’ 2023, Ugni Blanc, cask #33, 425 btl.)

Cutxan 2005 armagnac - L'Encantada Nose: rich and rounded, with some brown sugar, vanilla cake or Panettone and almond cream pastry. Raisins, nougat and caramel, with subtle hints of furniture polish. Peaches and plums. Then also mild spice, mainly cinnamon.

Mouth: more of these fruits, like peach jam, plums and hints of mango. Hints of molasses and caramel coated almonds. Some pepper. Certainly more gourmand than the Cassou, getting close to bourbon whiskey in a way. Hints of crème brûlée towards the finish.

Finish: sweet and caramelly, with honey, sweet oak and a leathery dryness.

Armagnac meets Kentucky. We’ve had Cutxan 2006 a while ago – this is more polished and overall nicer, in my opinion. Score: 87/100



Domaine Lous Pibous 27 yo 1995 (52,3%, L’Encantada ‘Renaissance’ 2023, Folle Blanche, cask #140, 310 btl.)

Lous Pibous 1995 armagnac - L'Encantada Nose: cedar wood stands out, with waxed floors and hints of glue and shoe polish. Then Demerara sugar and dark plums, as well as hints of cassis and Cherry Heering. Then some tobacco and chocolate, as well as some pumpernickel.

Mouth: rather wood-driven again, with varnishes, cigar boxes, sappy herbs and some tannins. Chocolate again, with tiny hints of sour cherry and blood orange. Light eucalyptus and mentholated notes. Drops of cough syrup too.

Finish: long and dark, with Darjeeling tea, polished oak, cocoa and tobacco leaves.

A heavy style, yet elegant with nice varnished oak. I found this to be a tad less fruity than the GoTA / Encantada sister cask, but nonetheless pretty excellent. Score: 90/100