When I met Davorin Kuchan for the first time, I tasted his wonderful line of fruit eau de vie and I told him, "if you make a real peach brandy, not a peach flavored brandy, but an authentic barrel-aged product, you're going to be a huge star in the cocktail world." If you check through classic cocktail manuals like the "Savoy" or "How To Mix Drinks," you'll find numerous recipes that call for apricot or peach whiskey, and they're not referring to the flavored liqueurs available these days. Truth be told, there just wasn't anyone willing to make the stuff anymore...until now! Along with a few select bars in San Francisco, K&L is the only place you can get this locally made, authentic peach brandy. It just sings of real stone fruit and the flavors marry beautifully with the oak barrel influence. I'm delighted that it turned out as well as we had hoped. If you want a small piece of history, this is a small renaissance in a half bottle. For serious cocktail enthusiasts and the few who want to taste real peach whiskey, this is the stuff. (David Driscoll, K&L Spirits buyer)
By: David Driscoll
K&L Staff Member
I'm not sure most folks really appreciate what it takes to make this SPECTACULAR brandy, so let me break it down for you. Davorin Kuchan has to drive up to the Sierra mountains and get truck loads of peaches and drive them to his distillery in Belmont. Then he has to de-pit the tons and tons peaches by hand (he's not a peach farmer or canner, so he doesn't have that equipment). Then he has to press them, ferment them, and distill them which is an incredibly sticky and messy process. Then he has to barrel-age the teeny, tiny little bit of brandy that he gets from that distillation. The result is this incredibly affordable peach brandy that is the only LEGIT "peach whiskey" on the American market - as in NOT flavored with peaches, but actually distilled from nothing but peaches and put into a barrel. This is a piece of American history!
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By: Matthew Brockmeyer
Score is kind of meaningless: if you want a true, dry, peach brandy -- not a liqueur -- this is the only game in town. The nose steals the show here: it is jam-packed with absolutely mouthwatering aromas of pure, fresh peaches. It is interesting neat, but as David alludes to, cocktails are where this will really shine. Davorin's far more of an expert than I'll ever be, but I can't help but wonder how this would fair with a little additional time in the barrel. I'll definitely be looking for more cocktails to try this in, but for tonight, I'm enjoying it in a Judgette (from "The Savoy Cockail Book"): 1/3 peach brandy, 1/3 gin, 1/3 dry Vermouth (I'm using Dolin), dash of lime. Shake well with ice; strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Dry as a bone, but delicious!
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