First, a story:
When I started getting interested in cachaça, I started looking for it in grocery and liquor stores. Often, it's quite a treat when you do find it, even if it is shoehorned into the "Rum" section's bottom shelves.
One time, my wife's mom and great-aunt were in Chicago for a visit. We took them to Fox & Obel, a high-end grocery store where, no doubt, the likes of Barack Obama have gone arugula-shopping once or twice.
I darted to the liquor section and, lo-and-behold, there were the requisite cachaça selections. I immediately ran around the store, looking for my mother-in-law. Then, dragging her to the liquor section, I pointed proudly at my find.
Well... Mamãe wasn't all that impressed. She pointed to one of the bottles -- Ypióca -- and stuck her tongue out. I think F&O was asking for somewhere around $25-$28 a bottle. Evidently, it was not to her tastes.
So, what was I to think when I show up to Mamãe's house and she presents me with this elegant package?
Well, I gave it a try.
According to the press release (site doesn't offer a permalink, sorry), this was released in July 2006. They're still advertising it fairly dramatically, as evidenced by this oversized clock that hangs above one of the ticketing areas in Rio's Antônio Carlos Jobim International Airport.
As to the cachaça itself... For some odd reason, the Ypióca folks thought to introduce a malt into the process in addition to aging the product for six years. Personally, I might've preferred it if they'd concentrated on keeping the shifting variables low, focusing on aging instead of adding.
The result is this diabetic-shock-inducing aroma that carries the strong scent of wet brown sugar. Once in the mouth, it kind of behaved like Glenn Close in Fatal Attraction when she exclaims "I'm not gonna be ignored, Dan!"
Not sure if they were going for the elegant after-dinner dessert liqueur or well-crafted sipping spirit. Definitely interested in their other attempts at finer cachaça if it happens in, well, fewer than another 160 years.
(Note to PETA: Despite the Fatal Attraction reference, no bunnies were boiled during this review.)