Noilly Prat is the oldest vermouth brand in France. It was published by the French gentlemens Noilly and Prat in the mid-19th century. Their company and factory were set up in Marseillan, France, where production still exists today. The company was later acquired by the Italian Martini & Rossi, which in turn merged with Bacardi, which is thus the current owner.
Extremely acidic grape varieties are used in the production of Noilly Prat. The wine is aged in oak barrels for a year. The barrels are stored outdoors, making them vulnerable to seasonal and temperature fluctuations. After maturation, the wine is fortified with alcohol made from grapes and various fruit extracts are also added to the mixture.
After standing for a few weeks, the herbs, which are twenty different, are added, e.g. wormwood, chamomile, lemon peel, cinnamon, cloves, raspberry and coriander. The spices are macerated for six weeks, after which the wine is filtered and bottled. Added sugar is 40g per liter, which is somewhat more than in dry vermouth in general. Noilly Prat vermouths are practically not available in the Baltic countries, but a liter bottle was on sale at a ferry between Finland and Estonia for € 17.
The aroma is slightly aromatic, herbal and sweet. Orange peel, wormwood, chamomile. The taste is slightly sweet, slightly bitter and spicy. Chamomile, lemon peel, wormwood. The taste is stronger, more herbal and also more bitter than the market leader product of Martini & Rossi. The long aftertaste is pleasantly bitter and spicy. Noilly Prat is a little sweeter than dry vermouths usually, but still dry enough, the sweetness is well balanced with bitterness and herbiness. Spiciness is rather strong, but very well balanced.
Noilly Prat Original Dry is an excellent vermouth in all respects. It is very pleasant to drink neat and is perfect for martinis and other cocktails. With Noilly Prat you can still make a prett good drink, even if the gin you use is cheap and weak. Clearly high quality and recommended product.