Dolin vermouth de Chambéry Dry – 17.5% ABV
Star rating: 5/5
Dolin’s vermouths stand apart because they are one of the very few remaining independent producers of vermouth de Chambéry, having begun production in 1821.
This is incredibly important when considering the unprecedented and unmatched appellation d’origine contrôlée (A.O.C) that was awarded to the region in 1932.
With Dolin being one of the last remaining independent producers in the region, they are also one of the few that are still producing vermouth to the rigorous A.O.C standard – other bottlers have been bought by large companies that have deemed it too costly to carry on with the traditional methods.
This means that Dolin have committed to producing only within Chambéry, macerating fresh ingredients themselves and not using artificial methods of sweetening their vermouth, instead relying on sugar and wine.
The base wine is made predominantly from grapes from Armagnac vineyards, as well as other more local producers. Originally the base wine was made from local grapes but tragically phylloxera decimated the vineyards.
Following replanting, the region was mainly growing red wine grapes and unsuitably sweet white grapes. Whilst the base wine has moved further afield for sourcing, the botanicals used in the vermouth are still foraged from the Alpine hills that watch over Chambéry.
The secret 17 herbs are macerated in house and, thanks to their adherence to the A.O.C regulations, help provide the freshness that underpins the vermouth’s character.
Your nose is met by summer fruits with a drizzle of vinegar. The palate is complex and well rounded. Almond mingles with sour citrus and a floral freshness that leads into a long finish, the entire experience is incredibly light and refreshing.
The Dolin vermouth de Chambéry dry is the perfect fit for a martini. Classic martini calls for dry vermouth, however dry vermouths can often be a touch too bitter or acidic. Dolin’s freshness helps combat this, managing to pack in a lot of flavour whilst maintaining an overall lightness that makes it easy to mix.
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This review was last updated in March 2020. If you have any questions, suggestions for future reviews or spot anything that has changed in price or availability please get in touch at email@example.com.