In the United States, we often associate Aquavit and its production with places that have larger historical Scandinavian populations— like Minnesota for example. However, Florida is home to a fairly large number of Swedish-Americans. So perhaps it’s not so unusual that Florida-based Tarpon Spirits would distill their own version of the perpetual underdog botanical spirit.
Built from a base of grain, Anclote Aquavit features both signature aquavit botanicals— dill and caraway along with other pickling spices. It has a slight hue which implies an aging process; however, not many additional details are disclosed.
Aroma: Strongly caraway, with some hints of genever— grain, mild-anise and lager.
Flavor: Immediately, strong caraway conjures the flavor of Jewish Deli Rye. However, as the palate unfolds, the caraway steps aside to reveal some other spices. Dill seeds highlight coriander seed, with background hints of licorice root and even cloves. It’s a robust, complex baking spice back half.
Finish: There’s a fair amount of warmth and moderate astringency to the finish. Dill lingers at the recesses of the palate, becoming slightly bitter as it sits.
Cocktails and suggested serves
Anclote Aquavit, like many other aquavits lend itself nicely to a Bloody Mary. Everyone has their own fun name for it, but simply swap out your favorite vodka for Anclote— garnish with a dill pickle to draw out that dill seed mid-palate.
Or you can serve it “Snaps” style, straight from the freezer and served neat before a meal. The chill mutes the astringency and adds an unctuous mid-palate that highlights the pickling spice. I think this approach rounds out any rough edges that Anclote Aquavit has. Try pairing it with a fresh grilled salmon.
Overall, Anclote Aquavit
It’s rare to encounter an aquavit that doesn’t meet the criteria for a clear and predominant flavor of caraway and dill. Anclote Aquavit achieves that easily.
Where it might differentiate itself is in the back half of the palate where it reveals a complexity and depth of spice that is richer than just caraway.
Overall, Anclote Aquavit is a good, solid aquavit that hits the marks. While it is unlikely to wow, it is a good American distilled option that is best served icy cold.