Hail Yak II is the second storied release in a growing herd, coming to us as armagnac produced at Lous Pibous, bottled by the well known independent bottler L’Encantada, and selected by the Aficionados Discord server as their second Armagnac selection of 2019.
Selected to highlight the community’s love of Yak (both the majestic creature, and the casual verbal abbrevation for Armagnac and Cognac), Hail Yak is a great perspective into the unique profiles that can be found in brandy.
This 1995 vintage is a 24 year release bottled at cask strength, without additives or filtration. Tasted and selected blind, Hail Yak II was a champion among other established houses like Frêche (1986, 1990 vintage) and Lassalle (1991 vintage).
The nose brings bright red fruits such as strawberry and raspberry, complementing musty leather and pipe tobacco. The palate and finish display an initial grape sweetness along with juicy tart strawberries before black pepper, dates and figs show up to party. It was noted by the panel that this dram bore a strong familiarity to old sherried scotch. Coming to us at 56.1% ABV, this bottle displayed an excellent mouth feel with a capable, but not aggressive, oak body.