Tastes

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  1. Clontarf 1014 Blended Irish Whiskey

    Blended — Ireland

    Tasted
    2.75
    2.75 out of 5 stars
    Clontarf is a nice and full consistent blended whiskey. In order to generalize its taste, one is in a right to say that Clontarf is something between Tullamore DEW and Bushmills (if we take both in their original versions), though it has some mild distinct notes and its own certain elegant style (probably due to its low occurrence). The aroma is vibrant, nicely formed, though it lacks this noble vibe, however the balance is strictly considerable. It has some simple grain, malt and alcohol notes, a little bit of citrus, slight honey and vanilla hints along with some oaten or hay-ish tone. The palate is a bit less pronounced. Vanilla, some nutty flavors, spices, unripe apricots, much of a citrus or, to be more precise, a citrus peel, and the alcohol is slightly marked here again. The finish is lightly sweet and spiced. The aftertaste is about the burnt wood, honey and also the bitter herbals.
    24.0 EUR per Bottle
  2. Compass Box Asyla

    Blended — Scotland

    Tasted
    4.0
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    Fancy, elegant and gentle. Pure example of how all the blended whiskies should be done. To the nose: peanut or even a peanut butter, nutshell, vanilla, light and sweet cream, anise, apples, halva and fudge. Perfume-alike. On a palate: very rich and very sweet, “tasty”, vanilla again, honey or a honey cake, some nuts, coconut, a little bit of tropical fruits on the background. It’s light and gentle with a clear note of a creamy strudel cake with a castor sugar as a topping. Finish is really smooth, delicate, evenly broadening in all directions. A bit watery and sweet with a spicy note. Some tropical fruits again along with a fresh floral/grassy theme. If judging by the first impression it might not seem extraordinary. It’s not blazing all the guns all over right from the start but it evenly expresses its unique form in right proportion during the further exploring. It seems to be kinda modest or tense at first sight but then it reveals its rich, creamy and elegant nature in an intelligent way maintaining the balance all the way through with dignity. Asyla is precisely acknowledged with its strong sides and it is able to impress you in various ways. This is what makes it so special.
    53.0 EUR per Bottle
  3. Loch Lomond Inchmurrin 18 Year

    Single Malt — Highlands, Scotland

    Tasted
    3.75
    3.75 out of 5 stars
    It’s the second time when the Loch Lomond distillery was close to impress me since not only this 18 years old Inchmurrin satisfied my curiosity but also brought a joy. The aroma is thick and rich, full of sour berries like arrowwood berries or cowberries with some dusty and stale notes. It also has much sweetness and spiciness in it, something like a sweet chili bubblegum, with just a hint of maple syrup, vanilla, cardamom, a handful of raisins, a bit of cinnamon and milk chocolate. The taste resembles of sherried whiskies though the label doesn’t say much about the cask. There’s a rich distinct taste of milk chocolate infused with raisins and spices, dates, almond, apricots, licorice, barberry and Diet Coke. The aftertaste is fiery spiced, even peppery with notes of honey and cinnamon. It might seem to be rough at some point but it’s just a bad first impression. Inchmurrin 18, unlike the 12yo or the Original, shows a greater potential in balance and possesses its own taste profile what consequently leads to a higher appreciation point although it hasn’t got rid of those unpleasant damp, dusty notes. In overall this whisky is far from being called a masterpiece, but it’s a lovely, fairly complex, well-set whisky with a value consistent to its price.
    64.0 EUR per Bottle
  4. High Commissioner Blended Scotch

    Blended — Scotland

    Tasted
    2.75
    2.75 out of 5 stars
    Well, that’s one more nice blend from Loch Lomond distillery that I would definitely prefer to their basic single malts. Aroma is very-very light, sweet, honeyed, a bit spiritous and full of apples. Surprisingly it contains almost none of the grain notes to the nose so in a case if you’re drunk enough you can easily confuse it with a single malt. The taste is almost the same - very sweet, even sugary, creamy, light and gentle and full of brown sugar. Some apples again, also some butterscotch, creme-brûlée and dried apricots. It might seem quite plain, rushing through your tongue, but it’s pleasant. The aftertaste unveils its grain nature as it’s rather harsh and bitterish. High Commissioner differs a lot from the LL range but it’s to the better cause it has removed all the unpleasant damp and bitter notes that are typical to the core range.
    9.5 EUR per Bottle
  5. Loch Lomond 12 Year

    Single Malt — Highlands , Scotland

    Tasted
    3.0
    3.0 out of 5 stars
    This one seems to be a logical follow-up to Loch Lomond Original single malt. Through the extra maturation it has evolved into something more adorable than its younger brother which is obvious as the changes that whisky had undergone in the barrel led to a better taste and smell. Although the core of the whisky stays the same, 12 years in oak result in a better balance and the absence of some prominent harsh notes. To the nose - a light peat, some medicinal notes (which as I believe are transformed from this insecticidal smell of LL Original), again some dampness, alcohol, some varnish and paint and something that I would most likely describe as a slightly burned tires like when the traffic light suddenly turns red and you just quickly hit the brakes and burn your tires. Yeah, like that. Shit description but anyway. What is more important is that the smell is not that shitty. The taste is pleasant and sweet, peppery, with vanilla notes spiked with peat, a bit of smoke, pine needles, coconut and plum. But in overall it seems pretty heavy and chemical. The finish is oaky, spirituous and more like sweeted than really sweet.
    39.0 EUR per Bottle
  6. Mortlach 12 Year "The Wee Witchie"

    Single Malt — Speyside, Scotland

    Tasted
    4.0
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    Finally got my hands on something really really nice and I’m astonished with the way the Mortlach 12 impressed me. The aroma basis is classic sweet and warm with toffee, butterscotch, rich caramel and probably a drop of a sweet musk. It also has a rather unusual notes of toasted chestnuts, citron sweets, subtle cigar smoke (like in perfume) and even pine needles, what makes the smell a little bitter. The taste is a logical follow-up to the aroma as it’s powerful, warm, spicy and it’s like saturated with the sweetness of raisins, dried apricots, caramel, nuts, butterscotch and it reveals some oriental delights in the background. It just knocked me down for a few seconds so I wouldn’t probably call this whisky smooth. Hence it leaves me in a position where it’s hard to gauge the balance of the whisky as it has this overwhelming sweet power though it delivers some bitter notes in the end. Finish is really bitter and hart-hitting. The aftertaste lingers for a while with that bitter sweet flavor of a honey mixed with a tar. And, well, caramel. Sorry for not mentioning it once again. It has its own style and this special heavily sweet mood which is might be more typical to armagnacs. Does it live up to its name of “The Beast of Dufftown”? I doubt it not.
    66.0 EUR per Bottle
  7. Loch Lomond Original

    Peated Single Malt — Highlands, Scotland

    Tasted
    2.75
    2.75 out of 5 stars
    A tender golden olive colour. A striking chemical aroma of insecticides with bright tones of stinky hard swiss cheese. Also something wet like a dump fabric plus some coconut (lol) and a little of peat. Well, it does not differ much from Loch Lomond Reserve blend as concerns its fundamnetal structure. But as far as it is single malt the typical grain/spiritous notes are absent here. The taste contains a subtle smokiness and peat, some citruses (oranges mainly or even orange juice) and apples + some spices. It's sweet and bitter in equal measure what makes the taste remarkable but not very pleasant. Aftertaste is bitter with some medicinal notes, but again sweet on the edges of the tongue. Looking at the Loch Lomond distillery it makes me wonder whether these guys are either underrated or overrated as, on the one hand, guys do an amazing job in reestablishing the brand and offer a highly diverse range of whiskies, however and, broadly speaking, therefore we get a problem of a materialistic kind - are they able to evolve through the experiments and create something truly epic despite the fact that the production capacities are very high what makes it possible to stop right there and right now and not evolve at all.
    25.0 EUR per Bottle
  8. Loch Lomond Single Grain

    Single Grain — Highlands, Scotland

    Tasted
    3.0
    3.0 out of 5 stars
    I've recently put myself in an inconvenient position of being unable to mentally pass on from one distillery to another leaving the most of its off-the-shelf range whiskies untried, so here's yet one another review about the lot offered by the newly reformed Loch Lomond distillery. Due to the scotch whisky regulation issues LL Single Grain cannot be considered to be a single malt though they use only malted barley during the production. The reason is simple and it lies beyond all the adequate measures - at Loch Lomond they use way too many different techniques so it's hard to tell if the malted barley that has undergone the continuous distillation in a Coffey still can still be considered a single malt at the end of the process. Well, off we go to the whisky itself. It definitely has much from both single malt and single grain types of whisky and still it remains a whisky from Loch Lomond what becomes obvious as soon as you open the bottle. Aroma is full of bright vanilla, even Vanilla Coke as vanilla here is massive, heavy and biting. Also there are some ripe peppery-sweet yellow apples and pears. It lacks of a certain complexity relevant to all the single malts but still is a better piece of a whisky-art then Girvan for example (no matter how many years this bloody Girvan has been matured in oak casks). The taste is bold and aggressive with sour notes, fresh herbs, vanilla and some oriental delights such as baklava and rahat-lokum. The finish is nice, short and warming and it also delivers a vodka style so familiar from the Girvan tasting. LL Single Grain is nice in overall and I place it higher than LL Original Single Malt but that's only because the Original was a bit of a disappointment. As I see it, the single grain whiskies have already lost a war against single malts over the market no matter how much some of the big companies try to start this "matured single grains are no worse than classic single malts" trend.
    25.0 EUR per Bottle
  9. Girvan No. 4 Apps Single Grain

    Single Grain — Lowlands, Scotland

    Tasted
    2.75
    2.75 out of 5 stars
    Light golden wheat-y colour. Butter cream, rich vanilla, wood and true white wine-ish aroma to the nose. It also has some distinct grain spirit aroma. Same to the tongue at the start. Creamy, mouthfilling, candied and blanket taste with a true “vodka” finish at the edge of the tongue and on the palate. Aftertaste is short and satisfying. A bit bitter on a palate. Some vanilla, wood and grain too. It seems to really diverse to single malts or blended whiskies mostly by its ultimately different grain nature which gives something of a distinctive (again somewhat a candied) vodka style. In second tasting it reveals even some steak meat tones to the nose.
    43.0 EUR per Bottle
  10. Old Ballantruan The 'Peated Malt'

    Peated Single Malt — Speyside, Scotland

    Tasted
    4.0
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    A little less passionate compared to the extraordinary 10 y.o. version. To the nose: heavy peat, many fresh notes and orange peel. The taste is same - very peated; pleasantly sweet on the edges of the tongue, some citrus, deep smoked barley; but somewhat pale relatively to the 10 years version. Finish is decent - smoky, mouthfilling, “oily”; there is some barley too. It seemed to be very likely to Ledaig 10 y.o. The second tasting reveals much more mature and sweeter nature (same bottle, after 2 months since opening - does not seem to deteriorate). Cool. With a touch of water it gives you some more citrus and cream. Well-deserved 4.
    64.0 EUR per Bottle
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