Absolutely love this drink... my wife who really is not into the hard liquor (she is a wine nut), went out and bought a special brandy sniffer glass because of this brandy. We enjoy a glass together 1 night a week just to make it last!!
What an amazing drink. This is a top of the line brandy that was phenomenal experienced neat. Beautiful amber color and long thick legs open to a rich nose, full of deep brown sugar, caramel, and hints of vanilla. I could not get enough of the smell of this dram. Light on the tongue with more brown sugar, oak, and a pleasant bite. Finish lingers log enough to leave you wanting more. Make no mistake, this is a top of the line brandy. Every day waiting for this was worth every minute.
I enjoyed it a lot and featured it on my podcast Lawyers on the Rocks. I tried it in a rocks glass with a big cube first, and must admit that this drink is much better served in a snifter sans big cube which allows for its flavor to shine through. If you want to hear the rest of our review, tasting notes and some legal humor I copied the link below.
Astonishing. Having only been lukewarm on cognac in the past, I was surprised to have this rocket to the top of my evening tipple preferences. Dried fruit notes in the nose preface a delicious sweetness with hints of vanilla, nut, fig and date. Absolutely loved this bottle.
Loved It! The taste, the aroma , even the name of it is amazing. It is the epitome of what Armenian brandy should taste! I myself being 1st generation Armenian American ( my parents are immigrants from Armenia) have to say I take great pride in what Alex Ohanian has created in this majestic drink! He has put Armenia on the map for having world class brandy ! I ordered 2 bottles and plan to order more!
I like it very much however I don’t love it. I find Nairi 20 and Vaspoorakan 18 much smoother. Let me know if you can get those. There is too strong an alcohol taste on the nose and the palate for a 23 year old brandy. However, having said that, it’s still very good and priced appropriately compared to French brandy
The sweet aroma of grapes pleasantly fills your nostrils whereas you can almost taste it before it hits your pallet. It's dark, crisp color I feel enhances it's flavor and smoothness. The taste...outstanding! I shared with a couple of close friends and put the remainder of this elegant cognac away for me only. I am sure to order another bottle once I've secretly finished this one. I agree with Arthur's recommendation to name it "Shakmat, Velvet Edition.
I am going to give Shakmat 9 stars just because it stayed true to it's roots by using all the old school/indigenous ingredients / grapes like garnan demak. For $110 you are getting far better cognac than some of these main stream brands such as: Louis XIII. My recommendation would be to make the next batch a true 23 year old and call it: Shakmat, Velvet Edition (for smoothness) and also reduce the sugar by 25%, it was a bit too sweet to be factual. Hope this helps ya'll.
Really beautiful on the nose with raisins, caramel and chocolate. After such a good start I expected it to be rich and appealing on the palate. Unfortunately promise didn't materialize. Taste is quite disappointing and dull. Finish disappear too quickly. Hope it's just a bad day. Definitely I will give it another try as I really love the aroma.
I really wanted to give this a higher rating. After the long wait, then trying this in 3 different sittings, it is just good. Not great, but quite good. The nose is a mix of caramel, toasted walnuts, heavy syrup, and alcohol! Too much alcohol, in fact, for an 80 proof brandy. I can't figure out why a 40% spirit has so much alcohol burn.
On the palate I picked up strong and exceedingly pleasant flavors of walnut, dried figs, dates, dark brown sugar, and more alcohol! The finish is short to medium, but the mouth feel while sipping it is velvety and luxurious. I just wish something could be done about the bitterness of the alcohol. It really takes away from what might otherwise be a really pleasant drinking experience.
This is incredible. Take most of the things I love about an aged, sipping rum, marry it with the few things I like about cognac (haven't yet found one that I like enough to buy, but I recognize characteristics I like), and then top it off with what I love about grappa, and you have Shakmat. I will keep this among my top 5 *must* have staples on my bar (the ones I go to for solace when life is kicking me in the kidneys). Pusser's Nelson's Blood, Casamigos Black, Whistlepig Rye, and Laphroaig Quarter Cask are the select few it will join. (P.S. Shant's review nailed it with the plum and prunes...well done, as I couldn't identify what, exactly, Shakmat was triggering for me!)
As an Armenian, I can say with full confidence that this is the best Brandy (cognac) since Moesha. Initially smooth and finishes with a warm, lingering, and tantalizing kick. Exquisite, prominent plum profile throughout the drinking experience with a pleasant nutty aroma. Damn, didn't think I would like prunes. Check and mate. (Batch no. 1:2400)
The flavor wheel is really accurate for this one. Rich and complex with dominant notes of raisin, earth, cloves, and black pepper. This is definitely not subtle and not your typical warm, liquid carmel, french cognac but intriguing and very drinkable nonetheless. You can tell that lots of care, thought, and expertise went into it. Definitely worth the wait.