Tastes

1901

A little from column A; a little from column B

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  1. Yellow Spot 12 Year Single Pot Still

    Single Pot Still — Ireland

    Tasted
    3.0
    3.0 out of 5 stars
    1901 - Hey, sorry to interrupt. You smell nice. Yellow Spot - Eh, thanks [laughs nervously] 1901 - Yeah, very fragrant. I just know you are my type: sweet and rich. Yellow Spot - Uh-huh, riiiight [eyes dart left and right] 1901 - [licks lips slowly] Yellow Spot - O-kaaay, riiiight. Oh my God, I uhm totally forgot to ehm, I just gotta go over...[backs away] 1901 - Hey? [louder] HEY? Your younger sister. Is she around?
  2. Gran Duque d'Alba Solera Gran Reserva

    Spanish — Jerez, Spain

    Tasted
    1.5
    1.5 out of 5 stars
    First off, I’m not a brandy drinker. I have very limited experience save for an occasional celebratory glass of Hennessy with a Hamlet cigar at faculty balls, graduation ceremonies and such like during my college years. Oh, how we thought we represented the very definition of cultured sophistication despite our poor facial hair and ill-fitting, rented tuxes. While in Spain I picked up a sample of this Brandy de Jerez, as I had seen it recommended by @The_Rev. With apologies to that knowledgeable gentleman I could not find within my glass the array of pleasures he chanced upon. The nose was very amiable: prunes, raspberry, musty leather and oak. Initially, I found the taste smooth with little heat at all. Then, as I continued to sip, it became cloying with sickly syrupy flavours of brown sugar, prunes, soaked raisins (like for a Christmas cake), sticky toffee pudding and an off-putting hint of anise (a personal aversion). Altogether it was overly sweet. I wouldn't rule out whiskey based on one dram so I’m not writing off brandy just yet. I just need to get more acquainted and I'll happily take any brandy recommendations for the whisk(e)y lover....
  3. Johnnie Walker Black Label

    Peated Blend — Scotland

    Tasted
    2.0
    2.0 out of 5 stars
    For some time now, I've belonged to a clandestine clique of whiskey drinkers who don’t really appreciate Johnnie Walker Black. We use shadowy hand signals and asinine passphrases because we cannot express our views in public without risking our whiskey credibility. In a dank and dusty den, we meet on a bi-monthly basis and drink unchallenging masterworks like Green Spot and The Balvenie Doublewood. It’s a heavy burden and we suffer in silence, but we welcome new members if you can uncover our hideaway hangout. On the other hand, if you want to cast your lot with an opposing faction that includes Robert Mugabe and Colonel Gaddafi that’s your call.
  4. Glenglassaugh Torfa

    Peated Single Malt — Highlands, Scotland

    Tasted
    3.75
    3.75 out of 5 stars
    Torfa is apparently the Old Norse for turf. Bit of hard work there for the etymologists. This is Glenglassaugh's first foray (since its reopening I guess) into a peated malt and at 20ppm it is on the lighter end of the bog band. That might give the impression that it is a little restrained or muted. Not so. It is a sprightly young NAS, matured solely in ex-bourbon barrels and, with 50% abv, it delivers a nice kick. The nose is of light, sweet peat smoke mingled with citrus; a youngish waft but not an off-putting ethanol or acetone smell. Just an airy manner of freshness and youth. The taste delivers a pepper smack and a playful alcohol jab initially. Enough to widen the eyes and waken the senses. A sweet orange develops with supporting salty, oaky notes. The peat smoke is most prominent at the finish and it is fairly strong - probably another indicator of its youth. The lingering finish is a salty, sweet peat that is mmm-mm-mmm. That's the way to do it. In your face Ledaig 10!
  5. Ledaig 10 Year

    Peated Single Malt — Islands, Scotland

    Tasted
    2.0
    2.0 out of 5 stars
    Ledaig you salty dog! I don't mean it in a good way. I had a hard time with this dram. The best of it is on the nose. A medium-light peat smoke and ocean spray are dominant and are supported by faint red wine notes and Orange Pekoe tea. There was also something that brought an image to mind of a shed of old farm machinery on my grandparents' farm. I couldn't put my finger on it until the third or fourth tasting - a not unpleasant creosote smell. The palate holds some pear, grape skin, black pepper, lemon with cloves, paracetemol tablets and enough salt to pay a Roman legion. The finish was not one to beckon me back: a dry tannic aftertaste like putting a cold wet teabag on your tongue. And lingering salt like a french kiss from Lot's wife. For me this was a real disappointment as I had high hopes and it is well rated. But to my tastes it's as salty as a swearing pirate and not one I would relish returning to.
  6. Green Spot Single Pot Still

    Single Pot Still — Ireland

    Tasted
    5.0
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    After a couple of years on Distiller, I feel obliged to finally share my own personal rating system. A consideration I have noticed others doing in their bios. ⭐️ - Ostentatiously completing the crossword on a crowded commuter train, but with mostly incorrect answers that somehow fit ⭐️⭐️ - A busker playing Wonderwall ⭐️⭐️⭐️ - “...and he said: Pretentious, moi?” ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ - The Pyramids, Newgrange, and ziplock bags ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ - The boxing scene from City Lights Green Spot is a great whiskey. A nose of green apple, pear, vanilla, porridge and light new wood shavings. A creamy taste of cereal, shortbread and citrus rind with a medium finish of honey and ginger. A great, solid, spirit-lifting, pot still whiskey. One of the best. I’d give it 19 stars. Maybe more.
  7. Talisker 18 Year

    Peated Single Malt — Islands, Scotland

    Tasted
    4.5
    4.5 out of 5 stars
    Call out your order to your snooty waiter in a swish restaurant and you'll more than likely hear him say: "Ahhh, exquisite taste, Sir". If I was a barman and someone asked for a Talisker 18, I'd say the same thing. Only I’d mean it. I’d really mean it. The nose is more muted than I expected. It is beautifully briny, with some gentle, sweet smoke, ice cream (vanilla), and some light wood as the Glencairn empties. The taste is where this dram excels. I think @Reverend357 put it best: "The nose is rather humble, no hint at what's about to happen". Humble though the nose may be, the palate has the full-on charm, poise and purpose of Roger Livesey as Torquil MacNeil, Laird of Kiloran. Oily in the mouth, the flavours are orange, peat smoke, salty sweet, developing into strong black pepper - chillies even - really fiery I thought. The sweetness, long pepper, and tinge of smoke continues into the finish and are joined by some oak and particularly a lovely medicinal taste at the very, very end. I'm not a completist by any means, but with this dram I think Talisker may be my favourite distillery. Whether you're a woman, a man, or a single-celled organism; at some time or another, every living entity on this planet has to try a Talisker.
  8. Teeling Small Batch Irish Whiskey

    Blended — Ireland

    Tasted
    3.0
    3.0 out of 5 stars
    A shamrock stamped on your passport as you enter a place nicknamed "The Emerald Isle"; a population that joyously celebrates St. Patrick's Day as a national holiday; an island with a beautiful rugged coastline .... in the Caribbean. Montserrat. That's what comes to mind with this rum-finished Irish whiskey. The nose is somewhat faint with cereal, honey, floral, apple/pear notes showing through, with some treacle too. Cereal is repeated on the palate, with some strong sugar sweetness and baking spice on arrival. It develops more to tea and oak at the end, and has a medium-long, dry finish of tea and citrus rind. Altogether a very solid dram, and probably my favourite rum finished whiskey over others that I recall tasting, such as The Balvenie Caribbean Cask and Tullamore D.E.W. XO Caribbean Rum finish. Enough scribbling. Back to my daydream of a pasty white Irishman lounging and sipping by the white sand of a Caribbean beach.
  9. Dunville’s Three Crowns Peated

    Blended — Ireland

    Tasted
    4.0
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    WhiskeyLive Dublin 2018 This sourced spirit is made up of a single grain whiskey, a 10yo single malt and a 15yo Oloroso sherry finished single malt; all of which have been married together in a peated cask. Jim Murray gave it 94.5 points in his 2018 Edition and said of it: "Even people purporting not to like peated whiskey will have a problem finding fault with this. This is a rare treat of an Irish.” This was my 28th (and final) tasting before being ushered to the exit at last year's WhiskeyLive. My notes from the night are equally as glowing: "Actually nice. Hard to know if drunk contributes"
    Dublin Castle
  10. Hazelburn 12 Year

    Single Malt — Campbeltown, Scotland

    Tasted
    3.75
    3.75 out of 5 stars
    This is listed as un-peated but on the nose I certainly get a light puff of peat that mingles with sea spray, new rubber (like a bicycle inner tube), and a core of some sherried fruits including orange and pineapple. I found the fruits are nudged to the edge during the arrival with tingly pepper and salt to the fore. It develops into tart lemon, blood orange and grapefruit and a sherry dryness at the end. The grapefruit continues to round out in the finish which is also is a little peaty and spicy. The empty glass smells of tobacco and sawdust. In summary, it was a very interesting 5cl miniature and my first Hazelburn. But not in the same league as the Springbank I have tried and not enough for me to consider getting a full bottle. However, I would like to try the Hazelburn 10 at some stage.
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