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Laird's Applejack

Laird’s Applejack


By Robert Plotkin

Crafted at the country’s oldest distillery, Laird's Applejack is a venerable American brandy as old as the Republic itself. Soldiers of the beleaguered Continental Army were fed and given Applejack while camped near the Laird family's inn in Colt's Neck, New Jersey.

Laird's Applejack is made from tree-ripened apples grown in Shenandoah Valley orchards. The apples are naturally fermented in insulated fiberglass tanks. No cultures, yeasts, starters, sugars or blending agents are used—making Laird's Applejack an impressively pure spirit. The fermented mash is double-distilled in pot stills with rectifying columns, then blended with 65% neutral grain spirits prior to being aged a minimum of 4-years in American white oak barrels.

Laird's Applejack has a smooth, light to medium-weight body, a bouquet of peeled apples and a hint of toasted oak. The brandy's palate leads off with the delightfully tart flavor of apple cider, followed by notes of toffee, caramel and oak. The finish is warming and of medium duration.

The distillery's crowning achievement is Laird's 12-Year Old Rare Apple Brandy, a sumptuous spirit distilled from a blend of five varieties of apples and aged in white oak barrels for a minimum of 12-years. It has an alluring, expansive bouquet laced with the aromas of fresh fruit. The luscious palate is dominated by the flavors of ripe apples and vanilla that slowly taper off into a lingering, flavorful finish. It compares favorably with many Calvados costing 2-3 times as much, which brings to mind the phrase, Vive la differénce!