The San Diego Union Tribune recently published a vermouth review that included a blind tasting of 6 top sweet vermouths, including Carpano Antica Formula, Dolin Sweet, Cocchi, The Boissiere, Noilly Prat, and Vya Sweet.
So what did the tasting consist of exactly?
First, a blind tasting of all the vermouths served neat, and careful analysis of the differing characteristics of each one. Second, a blind Manhattan tasting using: 2 ounces of Bulleit Bourbon, 1 ounce of sweet vermouth, a dash of Angostura bitters, and a luxardo maraschino cherry.
The article is a quick read and an excellent overview of classic vermouth flavors, aromas, and, well feelings. Here’s an excerpt:
“The complete surprise of the evening was not from a European producer but from the California winery Quady and its stunningly good Vya sweet vermouth. Our tasting group found this one to be the most complex, balanced and enjoyable of the lineup. It was also the most dry. There was a strong perfume of bark that melded perfectly with the cherry and spices and made for a delightful drink neat. Like the Carpano it had a timeless mystery to it. Kolodenko said it “catered to an antique audience.” It also made for the best Manhattan of the group, edging out the Carpano’s bold approach with a more elegant, complex touch. At nearly the same price as the Carpano — $21 for a 750-ml bottle — it was the out-and-out winner of our tasting.”
Take a look at the rest of the article here.