Ever heard of this drink?
I hadn't til I saw it on the bottom shelf (literally) behind the cash at Lee's Discount.
The name intrigued me so I bought it, a 17% ABV combination of cognac, vodka, "natural fruit juices" and "oak extract". The label also states it has "deep flavours of ... shadow fruit".
Now this is interesting. What is shadow fruit? I suspect it is also known by the name shaddock. This is a grapefruit-type fruit and there used to be a liqueur made from shaddock which was popular 100 years ago.
I wonder if this drink is a revival although the predominant flavor seems of Concord grape to me, almost like a Manichewitz wine (which I like).
There is an imprint of Princeton, Minnesota and I know that is the home of the company that puts out the Phillips Union line of whiskeys so probably the source is the same.
I like it but found it better with a splash of Ten High, on the rocks.
Ten High by the way is very nice, quite similar to VOB, maybe with a bit less barrel character but it has plenty on its own. I suspect the whiskey is 4-5 years old and this allows some distillery character to show through, which doesn't hurt it at all.
The star of this trip so far though is a stunning current bottling of Old Forester 100 proof. It is concentrated, silky soft, with that medicinal character many older (historical) bourbons have but few modern ones attain (some rye whiskeys have it). A class act. I wonder if its seeming unity of flavor comes from being in fact bonded although the label does not say. However confected, this is the definition of fine bourbon.