Chartreuse Yellow

  • Rating: 8
  • Value: 7
Ingredients: , ,
Proof: 80 (40%)
Price: $59.99 750 ML

A kinder, gentler, chartreuse, worth a try. Sweeter and more honeyed than it’s older sibling.


Notes: The much less well known brother of Green Chartreuse  Made with 130 different herbs ( the exact recipe is split between three monks at one time so no one posses the whole recipe)  in a Carthusian Monastery in the French Alps. The Yellow version of  Chartreuse is lower in proof ( 80 rather than 110 ), sweeter, less intensely herbal, and  generally  a bit lighter in character. Honey and Saffron are two of the more distinguishing flavors that contrast it to it’s more well known brother.  The exact history and genealogy  of the Chartreuse drink family is explained fairly well in the wikipedia – well enough that I won’t repeat it here, but definitely worth the read . Formerly distilled in copper pot stills, it is now made in stainless still column stills.

Appearance: A clear gold green tinged color from presumably the addition of saffron and honey to the mix. On swirling it coats the glass with a relatively thick coating then the rapid appearance of scattered legs and some scallops/rears forming on the edge line with a very tenacious coating that does not subside- speaking to the viscousness of the spirit.

First Impression: Floral, honeyed, almost like s very sweet pastis with honey, violets, cloves, and lemon.Nicely complex but not as full on as the standard chartreuse’s bouqet – which may be a positive or negative depending on your feelings on Green Chartreuse.

Taste: Very thick, honey like entry almost an light herbal syrup, with intense honey, floral, citrus and herbal notes with a lovely saffron and herb/citrus tinged  finish.

Drinks: Yellow Chartreuse is to some degree ( or to some minds) somewhat interchangeable with the Green Chartreuse in some drinks but sometimes with very different results IMHO. Some standards are the Alaska and Puritan Goes nicely with gin, cognac, calvados. Try using it as a sweetener like agave syrup or orgeat in some recipes – you will find it quite versatile .

Bottle: Clear moulded glass with a slightly oblong cartouche on the shoulder spelling Chartreuse with a Globe and cross in the center , slightly bulbous neck, and tapered bottom. Multicolored yet somber paper label with chartreuse yellow background and black with gold striped screwcap and neck wrap.

Other: Lower proof and easier for novices to get a start down a lovely road of herbal delights.

Final Thoughts: Definitely in the same family as the Green Chartreuse but quite a bit different  in many flavor aspects that merit getting both kinds for your personal or public bar. Think of them as almost as you would London Dry Gin and Genever or maybe Bourbon vs. Scotch each is great in their own right but your individual tastes will dictate which you use more.

Nicely done and well laid out, covers a fair amount of it’s long history and how to tour the museum.

Sort reviews by: