Tastes

Generously_Paul

Like a fine woman, a fine whisky deserves your time and attention

Filter
Sort
  1. Ezra Brooks Kentucky Straight Bourbon 90 Proof

    Bourbon — Kentucky, USA

    Tasted
    2.75
    2.75 out of 5 stars
    Lately it seems I haven't wanted to do much contemplating or pondering of my whiskies, but rather to drink a cheap bourbon at about a 4:5 whiskey to Coke ratio. Well with all of the time off amid Covid-19 mania I've gotten just that opportunity. I picked up a 1.75L bottle of this Kentucky straight bourbon for a paltry $30. It's bottled at 45%ABV, chill filtered and a natural color of orange copper. Add in a 2 L of Coke and some ice and it's off to the races. Towards the end of the bottle I figured I better take a couple nights to give it the old glencairn treatment and see what's what. The nose begins with some dusty peanut shells, corn, rye and mint. There's lots of cinnamon, but more like cinnamon red hot candies, and butterscotch. Orange peel, a little brown sugar and vanilla. Charred oak and a bit of burnt marshmallows. A very faint banana pudding, almonds, cherries and peanut brittle. A fairly typical bourbon profile, but not really that of a quality one. The palate starts off as cinnamon, again more like the sugary red hots or even that of Fireball rather than the actual spice. Corn must and apples. Not like fresh apples, but more like apples that your kids have left out for a few hours and they're all brown and oxidized now. Charred oak, a touch spicy and dusty. At times there is an unpleasant acetone note, but thankfully this is not very often or long lasting. An artificial banana flavor, maraschino cherries and vanilla. A medium-light bodied mouthfeel that is on the thin side and mouthwatering. The finish is medium long with more of those dry apples, oak and vanilla. This is a very simple, young, and slightly rough bourbon, but that's kind of to be expected with a budget bourbon. Having said that, I would absolutely take the Evan Williams Black Label over this one in the budget bourbon category. It works fairly well when paired with Coke, but again, the EW does that even better, despite the lower ABV. The whiskey is worth a 2.5, maybe even a little lower, but the value will bump it to 2.75. Cheers
    30.0 USD per Bottle
  2. Highland Park Cask Strength Edition

    Single Malt — Islands, Scotland

    Tasted
    3.75
    3.75 out of 5 stars
    It's been a while since my last review. It's been nearly a month since Michigan put the Stay Home, Stay Safe order in place and you'd think that I would take this time to really dive into the reviews. This has not been the case. Instead I've been just making mixed drinks and relaxing. Well it's time to break that up a bit. I received this bottle of HP Cask Strength, which looks different from the bottle in the listing (the bottle creation function doesn't seem to be working at the moment). This one, from what information I can gather, is likely batch 3 of the cask strength expression and may or may not have been exclusive to the Swedish market. It comes in at a hefty 63% ABV, its non chill filtered and natural color of a dark amber with orange hues. I got this bottle from @LeeEvolved for Christmas 2019. The nose is potent, a lot of alcohol at first and very boozy. Quite closed off at first, but it comes around. Tangerines and a sweaty/earthy funk. Eucalyptus, light sherry, vanilla and green grapes.. Had to add some water. It becomes much fruitier with a touch of warmed sherry. The tangerines and vanilla are more pronounced, but also some raspberries and strawberries and grape skins. Buttery/fatty and waxy. Light toasted oak, walnuts, fudge and spicy chocolate. Roasted malt, caramel and honey with a light grassy note. Adding water is the way to go here. The palate neat is HOT. Intense tropical fruits like mango, papaya, oranges and pineapple. Too intense to enjoy past the first couple sips. Adding water really helps. It takes away most of the heat and the tropical fruits remain, however they are much more enjoyable. A slight smoky note and some barrel char. Sweet but not sugary sweet, more of a fruity sweet. Spicy oak, honey, a bit tannic and a hint of lemon/lime. A full bodied mouthfeel that is hot, thick, syrupy and mouth coating neat. Medium full bodied, oily, mouth coating and mouthwatering with water added. The finish is long with honey and sweet heat neat. Medium long with wood spice, fruity and honey with water added. While the flavors are very intense and concentrated at cask strength, it's just too intense to enjoy. Taking it down to around 46% (or thereabouts as I don't have a hydrometer) is the sweet spot for this guy. Even down past 46% into scotch mist territory beats straight out of the bottle for me. Overall it's young, a bit rough, but still delicious and enjoyable if you do some experimenting with water. Neat I would only give this a 3.25, but hitting the sweet spot bumps it up to a 3.75. Cheers. You can check this one out on the Dapper Drams YouTube channel at https://youtu.be/sQVsrfFLMv0
  3. Ardbeg Kelpie

    Peated Single Malt — Islay, Scotland

    Tasted
    4.5
    4.5 out of 5 stars
    I sat down to do a re-review of this Ardbeg that I tasted over 2 years ago, hoping that I would find something new, something previously undiscovered. The previous review was from a sample, this was not a bottle that has been open 2+ years. But no, it’s the same amazingness as before. The nose is incredible and unique for an Ardbeg in that the sweetness carries it almost as much as the smoke does. The palate, while not too complex is very satisfying. I will say that I did get a bit of a rubbery note this time that I did not get before, not that that’s a bad thing. Still amazing, still a 4.5 For further details, see my published works on this subject...just look up my last review lol. Cheers.
    110.0 USD per Bottle
  4. Dalwhinnie 15 Year

    Peated Single Malt — Highlands, Scotland

    Tasted
    3.5
    3.5 out of 5 stars
    So as many of you know, a while ago I took suggestions for bottles for a tasting party. This was the bottle that I landed on to represent the Highland region. There was plenty left after the tasting so I decided to review it. This will be a re-review, as I tasted this a little over 2 years ago. The stats are the same as before, 15 years old, bottled at 43% ABV, chill filtered and with colorant added making it a yellow gold. Let’s see if it’s the same as I remember it. The nose walks the line between delicate and robust, but leans delicate. Honestly it’s not all that dissimilar from some Japanese whiskies. Very floral and malty with plenty of honey. Notes of hay and grasses with some sweeter notes of grapes and lemon. Creamy vanilla and bourbony oak, orange peel and a generous dash of salt. Malty breakfast cereal like Grape-Nuts, red apples, cranberries, raisins and plums. A very light peat that reminds me of a heavily watered down Talisker, and a whiff of smoke. Pickled ginger, menthol and peppermint. Letting it sit in the glass brings more lemon, some apricots and green apples. The palate is somewhat sweet and somewhat bitter/tannic. Citrus forward with oranges, lemon and some grapefruit. Very malty, floral and lots of honey. Weak black tea and oak, vanilla and chamomile. A touch of pepper but no spice. Leather, somewhat earthy, a very light peat. A hint of dry sherry, green grape skins and faint blackberries. A light bodied mouthfeel that is lightly oily, mouth coating and dry. The finish is long with citrus peel, malt, honey, weak tea and dry. Well I have to say that based on my previous notes, this stuff hasn’t really changed at all. The only differences I see are the peat notes and that the previous review said I got much more bitter notes. This definitely lives up to its nickname “The Gentle Dram”, and while there is little to complain about, this whisky just didn’t do anything for me. There’s no pop. Rather boring, which is fine for when you want something just to mindlessly sip, but not something to come back to when you want to really enjoy a dram. I also want to point out that the price for this is way too high. $85 for a 750ml bottle is outrageous. Luckily I was able to snag a 1L bottle at duty free for only $64. That price is a little more palatable. Last time I gave a 3.75, this time I think a 3.5 is fair. Cheers And BTW, the tasting party was a big hit and you can see some picture and my tips for hosting your own party in the latest episode of Dapper Drams on YouTube. https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=poApcllGkGA
    85.0 USD per Bottle
  5. The Macallan Edition No. 5

    Single Malt — Highlands, Scotland

    Tasted
    3.25
    3.25 out of 5 stars
    Finishing up my reviews of the Macallan Edition series with this year’s release, Edition No. 5, courtesy of @LeeEvolved. This newest edition is bottled at 48.5% ABV and is non chill filtered and natural color of amber. This particular Macallan uses a high proportion of ex bourbon barrels, and it shows. Even though all of the casks were sherry seasoned, the first note I got on the nose was bourbon, and a lot of it. The American oak really stands out and delivers a ton of sweetness. Copious amounts of vanilla, caramel and brown sugar. The sherry starts to come through a little with golden raisins, chocolate and sweet grapes. There was something that kept me wondering for a while, and then all of a sudden it hit me...kettle corn. First time I’ve ever gotten that and it was very interesting. Donut glaze, powdered sugar. If smells could rot your teeth this would carry a warning from the American Dental Association. Peaches & cream, vanilla custard, sweet oaky notes. After it sits a good long while I started to get apples and pears as well. The palate had a somewhat sweet entry, followed by a surprisingly spicy arrival. Very oaky with lots of wood spice. Again, way more bourbon than sherry. Slightly astringent. Vanilla, a bit sour, and that odd kettle corn note from the nose. A little barrel char, aromatic, a touch floral and some hay. Little to no sherry presence, some orange peel, but nothing else in the way of fruits. A little salt and chocolate, but way too much oak. A medium to full bodied mouthfeel that is astringent, mouthwatering, then dry. The finish is medium long with oak, bourbony oak, tannic oak, clove and ginger. I really enjoyed the nose on this one for how oddly sweet it was and that unique kettle corn note, but the palate completely undermined that enjoyment. It’s as if they created this whisky solely on the nose alone, smelled the end result and said, that’s perfect, no need to taste it, I’m sure it’s fine. The palate was overly harsh and way over oaked. The worst of the Edition series I’ve had. It’s not even recognizable as a Macallan. I’d give the nose a 4, but the palate struggles to get past a 2.75 or 3 at best. So for that I will give it a 3.25. Cheers
  6. Cutty Sark

    Blended — Scotland

    Tasted
    2.0
    2.0 out of 5 stars
    After hearing good things about this blend I decided to give it a try. It’s a cheap blend from Edrington Group (even though they sold it recently I think this bottle is still from that era), but so is Famous Grouse and I really enjoyed that one, so why not drop the $20 and give it a go? Bottled at 40% ABV and chill filtered, but is a natural color of pale straw. The nose is intensely sweet up front. It’s almost completely dominated by ripe green pears, very sugary sweet. Also some white grape/peach juice and a very light coconut and pineapple. A floral note, perhaps apple blossoms. Salty, slightly biscuity with a very light lemon and honey. Ashy and wood smoke, but not your typical peaty profile. The palate is intense for 40%, but most of that is a young peppery grain harshness. More of those ripe pears...piles of them. Peach, apricot, salty and sour. Not much after that. Light to medium bodied, thin but creamy, mouthwatering. The finish is short with grain alcohol, pears and salt. I have to admit, I had a hard time trying to pull nosing notes out of this one. The pears were so dominant for me that I missed a lot. I had to check other reviews to get my bearings. The palate was a little more straightforward. Either way, this is not a whisky for sipping neat. It does, however, get masked by cola very well. I mixed Pepsi with this (about 3:1 pop to whisky) and there was hardly any alcoholic presence. For the money, which is forgivably low, I’d rather buy a bottle of Famous Grouse. At least with that you get a hint of Macallan and Highland Park. Will not buy again unless it’s to be specifically used as a mixer. Cheers
  7. The Macallan Edition No. 4

    Single Malt — Highlands, Scotland

    Tasted
    3.75
    3.75 out of 5 stars
    Continuing on with the Macallan Edition series of annual releases, we come to Edition No. 4, again courtesy of @LeeEvolved. Bottled at 48.4% ABV and is non chill filtered and natural color of dark amber/copper. A slight nip of alcohol on the nose, followed by strong oak, honey and floral notes. Raisins, plums, cranberries, oranges and red apples. Fairly fruity, but all with a light sherry backbone. Tobacco, caramel, vanilla and a bit of allspice. Butter toffee, maple syrup and light mint chocolate. The palate is rich but not overtly sweet. Strong raisins, figs and oak. Walnuts, clove and nutmeg, along with a rather unpleasant acetone note that came and went not quickly enough. Plums, prunes, chocolate and orange zest. Sugary syrup, more peppery oak and a touch of cherry cough syrup. A light to medium bodied mouthfeel that is thin, watery and mouthwatering. The finish is long with oak, spice, sherry, light citrus and chocolate and black cherries. Compared to the last two (Editions 2 and 3), this one is the worst so far. Not to say it’s bad, but it just has less to offer. The nose is pretty good, a classic Macallan, but the palate was a bit harsh and lacked complexity a little. If the nose wasn’t as good as it was (which was nothing earth shattering) I would have scored this a 3.5, but I’m going with 3.75. Cheers
    95.0 USD per Bottle
  8. New Holland Beer Barrel Rye

    Rye — Michigan , USA

    Tasted
    1.0
    1.0 out of 5 stars
    Just a quick tasting note here. Had this at a friends house tonight. Didn’t really get a chance to nose this one but the palate was something incredibly different, and not in a good way. Basically it tasted like menthol cigarettes with some dill. Pine resin and various herbs. Don’t buy this, it’s gross
    35.0 USD per Bottle
  9. The Macallan Edition No. 3

    Single Malt — Highlands, Scotland

    Tasted
    4.0
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    Next in line for the Macallan Edition series is Edition No. 3. Sample from Mr. @LeeEvolved. I’ll skip all of the marketing nonsense and get right down to brass tacks. Bottled at 48.3% ABV and is non chill filtered and natural color of amber honey. Very respectable on paper so far. The nose is very oaky and nutty up front like roasted walnuts. A lot of nutmeg and allspice. Savory notes of brown sugar, toffee, and caramel come in. A very muted sherry, more of just a raisin or date note than your typical Macallan sherry. Rich vanilla and chocolate. Slightly fruity like baked pears, a little pineapple and underripe banana. Green oak but very light, red apple skins and slightly waxy. A bit more sherry now and some pancake syrup. Grapes and light leather. Overall sweet and savory, but not intense in either respect. The palate has a solid, yet not overpowering oaky presence. Plenty of vanilla, a bit musty and some semisweet chocolate. Very easy on the palate given the higher ABV. Bananas, spice cake, honey and toffee. Grapes and a hint of maraschino cherries. A bit leathery and the sherry that was almost nonexistent on the nose shows up, but is fairly restrained and has a hint of ginger. Light to medium bodied mouthfeel that is creamy and mouthwatering. The finish is medium long to long with honey, weak black tea, light sherry, light oak and blackberry jam. While this is not your typical Macallan profile, it’s still really well put together. I’m still surprised how little sherry there was, but it’s quite complex regardless. Really light for the ABV too. Not quite as good as Edition No. 2, but still a worthy Macallan. A solid 4. Cheers
    95.0 USD per Bottle
  10. Tamdhu 13 Year Old Madeira Finish - Dun Bheagan 1994

    Single Malt — Speyside , Scotland

    Tasted
    4.0
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    So I decided to open an official Tamdhu distillery bottle, and a Tamdhu from an independent bottler to see how the two stacked up. Would they be completely different or share much of the same characteristics? This is a 13 year old Tamdhu from the Dun Bheagan label from William Maxwell & Co. I couldn’t find much information on this bottler, except that they are now Ian Macleod Distillers, which is the same group that owns the Tamdhu distillery today. So it kinda comes full circle. Anyways this single malt was distilled in February of 1994, matured 13 years in cask #90341 with a Madeira finish and became one of 756 bottles in 2007. There is no info as to what type of cask was used for the primary maturation, or the length of the Madeira finishing. Pure speculation here, but I would guess 12 years more or less in a refill bourbon barrel and 12 months more or less in a first fill Madeira cask. Lots of honey and barley sugar on the nose with a strong sweetness, both of the fruity and savory varieties. A ton of oranges along with apricots, peaches and clementines. Salted caramels, brown sugar and molasses. Cinnamon apples, apple pie, pears and green grapes. Honey Nut Cheerios, oak, a very light almond and nutmeg with a touch of pistachio. Black tea leaves, green grass and fresh fennel root at times. A somewhat damp earthiness. Chocolate licorice and vanilla at the bottom of the glass. Oranges and apple pie are the dominant notes here, a very fruity and confectionary nose. Incredibly strong orange/orange peel notes on the palate. Honey, malt and a very light peat (more earthy than any sort of smoke), slightly vegetal. Tannic oak and dry white wine, it ranges from sweet to somewhat bitter to a little too bitter. Salty, lightly spiced, almonds and pistachios. The bitterness becomes more apparent the more you drink, but the fruitiness is never lost. Underripe pears, green apples, overcooked (but not burnt) pie crust and some pickled ginger. A medium bodied mouthfeel that is creamy and lightly oily, tongue coating and dry. The finish is medium long to long with oranges, apple pie, almonds, oak, honey, slightly sweet and slightly bitter. This has to be the most heavily orange influenced whisky I’ve ever had. Now I’ve never had anything else that was Madeira finished, so I can only assume it’s from that. So very different than any other Tamdhu I’ve tried. The nose is quite good and I would say it edges out the 12, but the palate is too inconsistent. On some nights it was great, others it started off pretty good but ended in nothing but bitterness. On a good night, like tonight, I would rate this a 4.25, but on a bad night I wouldn’t go any higher than a 3.5. Since there were more good drams than bad, I’ll give it a 4, but still choose the official 12 year old over this one because even though it was a step behind on the nose, the palate was consistently better than this 13 year old. The two share much in common if you just look at individual notes, but the dominance of each note side by side could easily give the impression that these are from two different distilleries. Cheers
    100.0 USD per Bottle
Results 1-10 of 372 Tastes