Combier - Doppelt Kummel Extra Liqueur 38% - 70cl
Kummel liqueur (in German called Kümmel, Dutch and English: Kummel, and Yiddish: Kimmel) has a fascinating history. The word kummel itself means 'cumin', a spice with a unique aroma, that is used in cuisine across the world, from Bombay to Brasilia, from Texas to Tehran. Archeological excavations have uncovered cumin seeds in sites dating back to 4000 years ago, in Syria and ancient Egypt.
Kummel liqueur was supposedly first distilled in the Netherlands in the late 16th century, however the truth is probably that it was made all over Europe with the spread of distilling technology: cumin (Cuminum cyminum), fennel (Foeniculum vulgare) and caraway (Carum carvi) seeds were distilled with spirit as a medicinal tincture, and sweetened with sugar.
Cumin seeds have been used historically to aid digestion and as an anti-inflammatory.
From these origins as a medicinal liqueur, however, like many herbal drinks and liqueurs, like Chartreuse and absinthe, started to be enjoyed for its flavour rather than any supposed medicinal qualities. Kummel liqueur became popular among the aristocracy and well-to-do in Russia, Germany, Holland and Britain, and remained popular until after the second world war. One of the few places kummel is still consumed regularly is in golf club-houses, where perhaps little has changed in the past century, at least, little compared to the outside world.
Like many liqueurs, in the years following the war, with the intense industrialisation of food production processes, the quality of many liqueurs started to drop off, with raw herbs and spices replaced with essences and cost savings made where possible.
Combier Doppelt Kummel Extra represents a return to the past, using a Victorian-era recipe, whole herbs and spices, and no expense spared in its production.
The bottle and label are both beautiful and monumental in feel, having been inspired by Combier’s 19th century era packaging. The liqueur is made in Combier's distillery (designed by Gustave Eiffel) in the Loire valley, France, in original period alembic stills, over a century old.
Tasting notes from Andrew White:
"This is a deeply pleasant experience. The moment you uncork your bottle, as the intense aromas hit your nose, you can sense the quality of the spices, and the serious time and effort invested in making each bottle.
Cumin has a warm and distinctive aroma. Caraway and fennel add an anisey, citrussy element. Words are not enough to describe the combination, it must be experienced to be understood. It is simultaneously exciting, relaxing and intriguing.
If you have tried other kummels and were not particularly impressed, this one demands trying. Tasting Combier Doppelt Kummel, I have regained my respect for the category of kummel liqueurs.
In cocktails, this kummel suits cocktails with citrus flavours, or add complementary element to savoury cocktails like the Bloody Mary."
Serving SuggestionDrink chilled in a small liqueur glass, particularly after dinner, or as an ingredient in a top-tier cocktail. Le Jour d'Avant: - 30 ml Royal Combier - 10 ml vanilla syrup - 30 ml Combier Kummel Add all ingredients and ice cubes in a cocktail shaker. Then, strain into a cocktail glass.
- Product Type:WM: Liqueur
- Description:WM: Liqueur
- Net Quantity:WM: 70cl
- Alcohol Content:WM: 38% vol
- Distillery or Brand : Distillerie Combier & Jade Liqueurs
- Product Type: Liqueur
- Description: Liqueur
- Country of Origin: France
- Responsible Food Company: rs, Distillerie Combier, 48 Rue, Beaurepaire, 49400 Saumur, FR
- Net Quantity: 70cl
- Alcohol Content: 38% vol
Weight: 1.35 kg
Dimensional Weight: 1.35 kg
Jade Liqueurs & Combier, France
Jean-Baptiste Combier, 25, opens the Combier-Destre candy store in Saumur together with his brother Claude. Thanks to an alembic installed in the back shop, he distils some liqueurs to fill his candies and chocolates with.
J ean-Baptiste buys more alembics and establishes the Combier distillery on the rue Beaurepaire, where it still is located today. This is the starting point of a booming business, Combier now sells its liqueurs all over the world.
Jean-Baptiste Combier's son James, only 19 years old, learns the art of distillation before traveling to England, Algeria, Italy, Greece and Egypt, from where he brings new essences and herbs for Combier Liqueurs.
Absinthe distillation at Combier :
Combier owns its own fields of 2 wormwood cultivars, harvested by hand and traditionally dried in an attic. There are 10 alembics from the 19th century in the distilling room, including 8 from Egrot (the famous maker of Pernod Fils alembics at the time).