The Distillates

The Distillates #3 - L'Encantada Domaine Le Frêche 1989 #L121 70cl (03/2024)

Regular price255,00 €
364,29 €/l
Tax included. Shipping calculated at checkout.

Region: Bas Armagnac
Rebsorte: Baco Trauben
Alkoholgehalt: 50.2% (Fassstärke)
Flascheninhalt: 70 cl

Jugendschutz: Verkauf nur an volljährige Personen! Versand mit Altersverifikation!

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Vorbestellung! Versand ab Ende März 2024!

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L'Encantada Domaine Le Frêche 1989 #L121

Dieser Armagnac wurde 1989 von Domaine Le Frêche aus Baco Trauben in Bas Armagnac, Frankreich hergestellt.

Er reifte für 31 Jahre in Fass L121 und wurde 2021 in Fassstärke mit 50.20% in Dame Jeannes umgefüllt (große Glasfballons mit 50 Litern). Für die Destillation wurde eine Alambic Armagnacais (Column Still) verwendet.

Shane und Sascha werden Anfang März sowohl den Grand Mole als auch den Le Frêche zusammen mit L'Encantada abfüllen.

Shane schreibt zum Frêche 1989:
Hi I’m Shane, from “The Distillates” spirits community. This cask is part of a larger whiskey journey collaboration between The Distillates, L’Encantada and Echlinville distillery (Dunville’s). The now empty cask was shipped to Ireland in early 2022 and 420L of new make single malt Irish whiskey was laid to rest. The armagnac now rests in demi-jeanne safely in the arms of L’encantada. I’m keeping most of what remains to be bottled and sold alongside the whisky when it finally matures so that we can all experience what a full armagnac cask maturation is like, and try the original spirit. BUT, I’ve had a number of very kind people ask me if I would be willing to do a small bottling for friends in the meantime.

If you aren’t familiar with Domaine Le Frêche, check out Adam Clary’s fun sleuthing, to find the origins behind this moniker. This cask already has a pretty vaunted reputation in the USA, from which the Orlando Whisky Society did a private bottling in late 2020. A few of us who like a good lick of oak declared it one of the best le Frêche released. e.g. Dan from Afishionados and my review from 2021. I liked it so much after buying 6 bottles, I called Vincent and paid to lock down the remaining 100L of the cask. I don’t know how many privately owned Le Frêche or Pibous casks there are left, but I bet you can count them on one hand. Probably two fingers.

I’m not releasing a lot of these bottles, so if you are here, it’s because I like you. Or someone I like, appreciates you so much they decided to share this link with you. This is a very rare shot to get access to a few bottles of some extremely rare older Le Frêche. Don’t expect to see this again for a while. I’ve asked sascha to limit it to 2x person. And while I won’t make it required, definitely grab a bottle from our grand mole 1985 Cask, which is also part of the series.

A heady, rich and robust aroma. Rhubarb pie topped with candied walnuts. Baked apples dusted with cinnamon. Bourbon soaked cherries. A hint of funk in that sweetness – like some brilliantly horrific gorgonzola cheese cake concoction. It is not just a pretty face. There is depth and its well integrated.

This bottle bring such a powerful concentrated sweet fruit goodness. Ripe figs and quality tonic. Homemade orange cranberry relish Julie’s mom would cook on Thanksgiving. Then into the pantry for a dusting of cloves which then shifts into old timey root beer barrel candy.

We live in a small island that claims Spain as its alma mater. This harkens to a truly world class sangria. The tannins of the wine, the tang of citrus layered into a bold sweetness. Then, BAM, oak. Oak for days, without clobbering everything else. A bourbon lover’s oak.

Tasted blind, my money would have been on a top shelf bourbon with some razzle. While it is not as complex as some of the more neurotic Le Frêche Casks, every note is just freaking delicious. This is the American’s bourbon-drinkers Armagnac. Bottles like this are what keeps bringing Armagnac to the new world and then break my bank account.

Allgemeine Infos zu Shanes Projekt: 
The TLDR; The Distillates is really excited to announce three bottles, two well aged Armagnac and one Irish whiskey, coming up for sale. Today the armagnac is available for pre-order until March 2 (or we sell out) when I head to France to bottle them. This is Invite only, not to be shared on any public channels for now (although you can share it privately). These bottles are part of a decade long project and I’m thrilled to be hitting the first milestone.

A Timely Aside
Before I go deep, because enough people asked very, very nicely, as I’m heading to the Gers to do some bottling, I’ll give a few friends the chance to dip into my personal cask of 1989 Le Frêche (Cask L121 - same that orlando whisky society bottled from in 2020). I will fill a very limited quantity of preorders. Sascha ( has been kind to support this adventure and will ship world wide (even to the US this one time, with both Vincent and PM spirits blessing - mad thanks to Nicolas for the support).

The Quest
I’m truly excited to share a Distillates project which after years has come to its first major reveal.

As a passionate geek, I often wish we could really experience the DNA of a bottling. Whisky is profoundly shaped by the wood in which it is aged, and often, the wine or spirit which came beforehand. I love both highlands and Irish whisky aged in “sherry cask” but would trip out if they actually said aged or finished in a “Toro Albalá Convento Selección Añada 1958” cask. Given the huge influence of cask finishing, imagine trying the aged whiskey before and after it has been finished, as well as the actual spirit / wine which influenced it. I’ve often wished to see what the marriage between a good whisky and a top caliber Armagnac cask could produce. But of the few rare Armagnac cask finish I see, they never know the domain. So, I decided to make it happen.

This journey began in Ireland. Vincent, from L’Encantada, and I ran a sold out armagnac tasting at the Belfast Whisky Week festival in 2021. He spun marvelous stories in French, and I butchered them into English, while we all siped from domains I had yet to experience. And at the end of the event, Vincent, maitre de chai of L’Encantada, slipped me a 10CL sample of motor oil while at Belfast Whisky Week in 2021. “This is your kind of anomaly Shane. Tell me what you think.” I sipped and tripped out. He explained that it was an error in the Chai that turned out to be something quite special. A cask from 1985 of Grand Môle was misplaced at the bottom of a stack and evaporated to the point where it became deeply concentrated, far outside the normal profile. For those of you familiar with the domain, this is not yo’ mama’s Grand Môle. It's a one off. I have a palate that sometimes steers towards the neurotic, but had just enough in that sample bottle to get some feedback and many agreed we had a truly unique cask. An old world whisky drinker’s armagnac. A huge deep dark tropical Agricol fruit bomb. To be fair, some people found themselves a touch overwhelmed. You have to be down with the good wood. I told him to hold the cask for me because this was exactly what I had been hunting for.

Vincent had to head home, but that night I shared a table for dinner with Katy and Anthony (owners of Irish Whisky Auction) and Jarlath Watson (Echlinville Distillery). I popped open a few bottles of old armagnac and we had a grand evening, introducing them to the category and going head to head with some powerhouse Irish spirits. Out of that conversation, I was invited to come come visit Echlinville Distillery where I pitchen them on my idea of enabling me and the geek community to follow the entire aging journey. Upon coming home, they sent Vincent and I a number of different new make, as well as aged spirits. Vincent and I selected three 420L casks sent to northern ireland (Lous Pibous 1995 #144, my Le Frêche 1989 L121 and my new Grand Mole 1985 #17). Damn I wish I could also have had the Pibous juice but some tricky lads beat me to it by weeks. Snoozed and lost.

The Grand Mole cask was filled with 19 year old ****** Irish spirit (ask me privately and I’ll share which distillery) in March, 2022. We kept a few bottles of the 19 year Whiskey aside, which I plan to use in a group tasting to explore the whole journey. I was planning to wait longer before bottling, but Jarlath filled a few hipflasks and took it to whisky live in three different regions. The feedback was, bottle it!!! So I went up to visit in January 2024, spent the day discussing blending with their head distiller, and tasted all three casks. Dang, the 21 year old Dunville is a beauty. But I still wanted to see what would happen with even more time. I asked if it's legal in Ireland to only bottle part of a cask, as they often do in France. Turns out it is.

I’m bottling ⅓ of the cask in spring of 2024 as soon as we make it to the front of the bottling line. In 2025, we’ll bottle another ⅓ at 22 years. And in 2026, the final drops at 23 years. It's so damn good now, but I want to see how more time in that wood brings forth the spirit's character.

For all three of these bottles, I’m giving a meaningful discount for friend / family pre-orders. Y’all have been huge supporters of all my wacky bottling projects and tastings and that means the world to me. As soon as I close pre-orders, if I decide to sell more, the price will go up ~20%.

While the grand môle was a cask finish project (although is 5 years really a finish), the other two are full maturation. For the single malt aging in the Le Frêche cask and the Potstill aging in the Pibous cask, we’ll talk at some point in early 2030 once I feel they have been well baked. I’ve had a number of people ask me if I might be willing to bottle a little bit of the Le Frêche 1989 now as they dind’t score back in 2020, rather than wait another decade. I need to keep enough so that I can bottle it together once the Echlinville/Dunville single malt is at peak yumminess. But I’ll bottle a handful when I go there in March.

Zusätze: Keine Zusätze
Flascheninhalt: 70cl
Artikelgewicht: 1.8 kg
Hersteller: L'Encantada (Route d'Auch, 32290 Vic-Fezensac, Frankreich)


L'Encantada ist ein unabhängiger Abfüller (Negociant) in Armagnac, welcher es sich zur Aufgabe gemacht hat, seltene und ungewöhnliche Stile zu bewahren. Vincent, Fred und Christelle füllen daher alle Fässer in Fassstärke und ohne Zusätze ab. Freut euch auf sehr ungewöhnliche Abfüllungen, welche euch durch ihre Individualität begeistern werden!

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