I’ve featured a couple of coffee liqueurs in the past, some big names and some crafted newcomers, but one recent relaunch seems to be taking bartenders to a new level in coffee drinks, even straying away from the classic Espresso Martini.
Toussaint hails its origins from Haiti when under the ruling of France and is named after the architect of Haiti’s independence, General Toussaint L’Ouverture, effectively known as ‘The Black Napoleon’. His image adorns each bottle created since its launch in the 1990’s. To celebrate his legacy, a liqueur was created using a blend of Arabica coffee, cocoa, vanilla and liquorice, all of which were steeped in spirit.
Fast forward to 2013 and Toussaint received a revival of sorts, moving their production to G&J Distillers in the UK and tweaking the recipe so that the Arabica coffee beans are infused within three-year old Caribbean rum. The label also had a face-lift, becoming bolder and more striking than the more traditional image, with General Toussaint L’Ouverture still featured on each bottle.
So how does it fare? Well below, I give to you my tasting notes –
Toussaint – 30%
Roast coffee and dark chocolate blend well on the nose, with slight sweet notes coming through. Sweeter flavours of dark chocolate appear on the palate, with a dry spice developing a fresh experience. Toffee is evident, as is ground coffee which lingers for a while at the finish.
A different flavour to what your normal coffee liqueur can bring, but it’s intriguing, which can only mean it backs up every bartender who has belief that this should be pride of place on their bar. Of course, one for yourself should never go amiss. It’s small enough to keep chilled in your fridge door too.
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