Wednesday, 29 June 2016

Lark Single Cask (#115)

Lark Single Cask (#115)

Official bottling
Single malt - Tasmania
Gold, tinge of pink
43% ABV
Dram

Nose: Lemon, pear drops, raisins, iron filings, dried apricots, hints of marmalade. 
Mouthfeel: Heavy body, syrupy, thick, sticky. 
Tasting:  Sweet salty. Caramel, pear drops, dried apples, chocolate, raisins, hints of coffee. 
Finish: Long. Raisins, dried apricots, chocolate, hints of malted grains. 

Comments: 

Heavy, jammy and metallic on the nose, but not unpleasant. On the tongue it devolves into something a little more mundane - chocolatey, packed with dried fruit, maybe a bitter tang of coffee. And so it stays. An interesting whisky.

Verdict:

I like this.



Friday, 24 June 2016

Lagavulin 8 yo 200th Anniversary Release

Lagavulin 8 yo 200th Anniversary Release

Official bottling
Single malt - Islay
Very pale green
48% ABV
Dram

Nose: Smoke, malted grains, lemon zest, golden syrup, hints of cinnamon. 
Mouthfeel: Light body, slippery, loose, turns watery. 
Tasting:  Bitter sour. Smoke, pea, wood ash, cinnamon, apples. 
Finish: Short. Apples, cinnamon, wood ash, smoke. 

Comments: 

Big and bold, plenty of heft. It's young whisky, it's not very complex, and by God it smacks you in the mouth when you drink it. Not too oily like other Lagavulins, instead it's a big heaping pile of wood ash, wreathed with apples and cinnamon.

Verdict:

I like this a lot.



Bulleit Rye Whiskey

Bulleit Rye Whiskey

Official bottling
Single rye - Kentucky
Dark gold
45% ABV
Dram

Nose: Oranges, bananas, rubber bands, black tea, cardamom. 
Mouthfeel: Medium body, turns watery, slippery, loose. 
Tasting:  Bitter sour. Orange juice, cardamom, lemon zest, vanilla, hints of black tea. 
Finish: Short. Chillies, cardamom, orange juice, black tea. 

Comments: 

Very spicy rye - up to 95%, very spicy, not too sweet. I like this, there's a lot more to rye whiskey than cardamom and banana, and this one showcases that. Great bitter, tannic notes, cut through with chilli heat and floral notes in the after taste.

Verdict:

I like this.



Wednesday, 22 June 2016

Paul John Single Cask P1-163

Paul John Single Cask P1-163

Official bottling
Single malt - Goa
Amber
57% ABV
Dram

Nose: Raisins, orange peel, chillies, chocolate, honey, hints of vanilla. 
Mouthfeel: Medium body, tingly, hot, thickens slightly. 
Tasting:  Sweet. Honey, cherries, chocolate, orange peel, red grapes, hints of coffee. 
Finish: Long. Chocolate, honey, orange peel, hints of cherries. 

Comments: 

No water. Yes, no water at 57%. This is very good whisky, and, while it stings and burns a little, it's also chockfull of sweet honey and cherries and chocolatey goodness. Very nice indeed, don't dilute it and lose the great flavours.

Verdict:

I like this.





Saturday, 18 June 2016

Cragganmore 13 yo 1999/2013

Cragganmore 13 yo 1999/2013

Authentic Collection, WM Cadenhead
Single malt - Speyside
Pale gold
54.5% ABV
Dram

Nose: Malted grains, raisins, lemon zest, chocolate, white grapes, hints of brass polish. 
Mouthfeel: Medium body, slippery, loosens slightly, astringent. 
Tasting:  Bitter sweet. Lemon zest, malted grains, walnuts, green tea, white grapes, hints of cardamom. 
Finish: Medium. Chocolate, brass polish, lemon zest, hints of green tea. 

Comments: 

Sweet, but with a robust bitter edge - walnuts, green tea, cardamom, maybe even some ginseng. Lots of tart notes to this, with maybe just a hint of sourness. Warming and delicious.

Verdict:

I like this a lot.



Saturday, 11 June 2016

Smögen 4 yo 2011/2015 (Cask 7/2011)

Smögen 4 yo 2011/2015 (Cask 7/2011)

Official bottling
Single malt - Bohuslan
Amber
57.3% ABV
Dram

Nose: Red grapes, leather, peat, vanilla, hints of marzipan. 
Mouthfeel: Heavy body, slippery, astringent, thickens. 
Tasting:  Sour salty. Red grapes, peat, leather, tamarind, lemon zest, hints of marzipan. 
Finish: Medium. Vanilla, lemon zest, leather, tamarind. 

Comments: 

I always feel maturing peated whisky in wine casks is hit and miss. There's experiments that go well, and experiments that don't, and this one is one that doesn't. A longer maturation, and perhaps the harsher edges of the peat and leather would have been ameliorated by the sweetness. But it's still a bit young for that. Oddly, water doesn't help.

Verdict:

Not bad.



Wednesday, 1 June 2016

Guillon Banyuls Cask Finish

Guillon Banyuls Cask Finish

Official bottling
Single malt - Champagne-Ardenne
Rose
43% ABV
Dram

Nose: Leather, red grapes, mint, honey, orange blossom, hints of sour plums. 
Mouthfeel: Light body, thickens slightly, slippery, slightly astringent. 
Tasting:  Sweet salty. Black tea, brown paper, raisins, red grapes, mint, hints of leather. 
Finish: Short. Chocolate, black tea, leather, sour plums. 

Comments: 

Very nice whisky! Bright and sweet, slight saltiness, reminds me very much of Chinese preserved sour plums. Hugely floral on the nose, this concentrates into something very tannic on the tongue. Banyuls and whisky - who knew they would be so good together?

Verdict:

I like this.




Monday, 30 May 2016

Smögen Primör 3 yo 2010/2013

Smögen Primör 3 yo 2010/2013

Official bottling
Single malt - Bohuslan
Amber rose
63.7% ABV
Dram

Nose: Peanuts, leather, pears, peat, peaches, smoke, hints of tamarind. With water, overripe peaches, tamarind, chocolate, lemon zest. 
Mouthfeel: Heavy body, astringent, burning, slippery. 
Tasting:  Sour salty . Peaches, pears, lemon zest, peat, smoke, tamarind, hints of mint. With water, more sour, lemon zest, peanuts, overripe fruit, peat. 
Finish: Short. Chocolate, peanuts, peat, tamarind. 

Comments: 

A new distillery on Sweden's west coast. This is very promising whisky, peaty, with huge fruit notes that show through that wreath of smoke and peat. Excellent nose, needs quite a bit of water, but opens up a lot. Still sour, more notes of peaches and other overripe fruit.

Verdict:

I like this.



Friday, 27 May 2016

Glen Scotia Victoriana

Glen Scotia Victoriana

Official bottling
Single malt - Campbeltown
Amber gold
51.5% ABV
Dram

Nose: Orange peel, black tea, peaches, pears, white grapes, hints of leather. 
Mouthfeel: Light body, loose, airy, slightly watery around the edges. 
Tasting:  Bitter sweet. Black tea, peaches, leather, peanuts, sandalwood, hints of violets. 
Finish: Short. Peanuts, peaches, lemon zest, white grapes. 

Comments: 

Old fashioned whisky, the bartender said, and old fashioned whisky it is. Quite sweet, slightly smoky, bitter notes, even savoury. Good fruit cut with peat and a slight hint of fragrant smoke. I guess the only way this could be more old fashioned is if it were matured in herring barrels, like Campbeltown whisky used to be...

Verdict:

I like this.




Midleton Very Rare 2014

Midleton Very Rare 2014

Official bottling
Single malt - Southern Ireland
Buttercups
40% ABV
Dram

Nose: Orange peel, apricots, milk, vanilla, lemon zest, hints of rich tea biscuits. 
Mouthfeel: Light body, loose, turns watery, slippery. 
Tasting:  Sweet sour. Orange peel, green tea, apricots, fresh baked bread, white grapes, hints of vanilla. 
Finish: Medium. Green tea, white grapes, apricots, plums. 

Comments: 

Light and delicious! I had the sister bottling to this, the 2006, and I remember it well. This one is a bit different, fruity and slightly tannic, plenty of cereally notes as well. Very good stuff, I always think I need to drink more Irish whisky.

Verdict:

I like this a lot.



 

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