Bols Parfait Amour

So I’ve been putting off reviewing my recent booze purchases as I wait for me to finish my lengthy “Alcohol and Me: A History”-themed first post, and I says to myself, “Mr. Morgan, why wait? Your first post is too long already, just get to the booze reviews!”

And so it begins. Here’s first up, a bottle of Bols Parfait Amour purchased at the downtown ALLIQ Hanabatacho-area store for around 1500 yen. Here’s the bottle:

In my opinion, there are few bottles as recognizable or as ugly as a Bols bottle. I cracked it open not knowing what to expect, and it smells a bit like a strawberries and cream hard candy. I’m going to try it by itself, and then mix a bit into some CC Lemon and some Orangina. I’m at my office so I don’t have anything proper to mix with it, just what was available from the vending machine outside.

I thought Parfait Amour was a violet-ish liqueur and that it may go well with CC Lemon or Orangina, but after taking a whiff, I’m not so sure.

Alright, first try, straight. Really nice purple color, smells like it did in the bottle: something sweet, fruity, pastel-y, altogether very Easter. Tastes pretty much like it smells, although I’ve nailed down the flavor a bit more. It’s almost exactly like those weird shaped demi-marshmallows (not Peeps; the super old, kind of hard peanut shaped ones): syrupy, sickeningly sweet, with some vanilla, something floral (violets possibly), and some more sweetness. Not a sipper, probably goes well with soda though.

Let’s try it with the CC Lemon first; first thought doesn’t sound too good, second thought maybe the lemon and the vanilla will go together nicely. The semi-cloudy yellow CC Lemon and the Parfait Amour mix to make an ugly gray-light brown ratty color.

The sweetness of the CC Lemon and the Parfait Amour add up to something greater than the sum of their parts. The resulting drink is pretty much flavorless double-sugar soda. Not unpleasant, but also not particularly interesting. We’re going to need something to cut the sweetness of the Parfait Amour.

I haven’t had Orangina in a long time, but I do remember it being one of the least sweet “sodas” available. I like CC Lemon once in a while because its not as sweet as Sprite or Mitsuya Cider, so I’m not sure if Orangina will be an improvement sweetness-wise over CC Lemon. Let’s give it a go. Mixing the Orangina with the Parfait Amour creates an even less appealing light-Oscar the Grouch greenish brown. It actually looks better in the picture than it does in real life.

And taste-wise, a slight improvement over the CC Lemon, but we still seriously need something to cut that Parfait Amour sweetness. Parfait and Soda would probably be pretty decent, as would something gin or vodka based. Rum might also be good to mix with, I’ll experiment a bit and hopefully find something.

Making a quick trip back to the topic of the Bols bottle, I recently learned there’s a reason they’re so defiantly ugly: according to the pretty awesome book Boozehound by Jason Wilson, a fellow Jason and possible fellow ex-New Jerseyite, Bols bottles are designed as the highest of high-tech equipment for flair bartending, with all those ribs and ugly fonts serving an important role in achieving maximum spin and flipability. Lesson learned.

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