Springbank 18 Year
Peated Single Malt — Campbeltown, ScotlandTasted October 16, 2021I might need to raise this score upon further reflection. It smells and tastes divine: springbank barnyard funk rested for 18 years in bourbon and sherry casks. It tastes old. Musty. Ripe red fruits. Juicy and long aftertaste. The price for this is all over the place which is the only qualifier in my review. If you can get this at retail anywhere less than $200 it’s a steal. But if you are thinking of paying more, I’d buy 2 12yr cask strengths or 3-4 10yrs instead. It’s a big step up from the 15 but the price is getting ahead of itself in the US at least.
Tobermory carn mor 12yr
Single Malt — Highland, ScotlandTasted September 30, 2021Nose: salt, orchard fruits and a hint of citrus (lime). Buttery popcorn. Palate: apples, malt, acidic citrus. Mild curdled yoghurt funk comes out in the development. Medium finish, mild alcohol burn due to the proof. May need to open this up a bit and/or add a few drops of water to let more tastes surface.
Peated Single Malt — Islay, ScotlandTasted September 26, 2021Disappointed by this. I’ve come to enjoy if not love the annual special releases as they allow Ardbeg an opportunity to showcase a different take on their ashy, smoky base spirit. I was very excited when they announced this release as I’d never had alligator but heard plenty of good things about it. It falls flat right out of the gate. Not a lot going on with the nose, you get some of the Ardbeg smoke with a hint of sweet bbq char. The arrival on the tongue is thin and muted when I was expecting perhaps an overly rowdy dram. It sits on the tongue a bit but fades quickly. Sweet bbq continues through the finish but it’s mild. They say happiness is reality minus expectations. And mine were set too high. I’ve come around a little on this since my first few disappointing tastes, and see some of the merits. The committee release was better IMO. I’ll be reviewing that separately but this is the rare case where I think the CR is clearly superior to the GR.
Colonel E.H. Taylor, Jr. Small Batch Bottled in Bond Bourbon
Bourbon — Kentucky, USATasted September 26, 2021A very good, balanced bourbon. Getting a lot of spearmint on the nose and finish which made me wonder how much rye Might be in the mash bill. Consensus seems to be: not much. Less than 10%. Huh. Well that’s what I’m getting anyway. Lots of it. Also getting some peanuts on the palate. This one is more wood and rye spice than sweetness which is probably why I like it so much
Bowmore 15 Year Golden & Elegant
Peated Single Malt — Islay, ScotlandTasted September 21, 2021Where’s the peat? The smoke? The islay? Perhaps mellowed by the 15 years in the barrel…yes, there’s wood spice and tannin in there to be sure. That’s quite nice actually. Perhaps it’s been filtered and colored and watered away…unfortunately true on all counts. This initially tastes more like bourbon than scotch, all vanilla and caramel with a slight bit of salt and smoke on the finish to remind you that you are in fact in the Hebrides. For me and probably many others Bowmore is the forgotten islay stepchild and they don’t do themselves any favors with this product.
Talisker Distillers Edition
Peated Single Malt — Islands, ScotlandTasted September 18, 2021Sherry blunts the usual smoke and salt of the base 10yr but in a pleasant way. Candied apples, sea salt, and dark fruits. Great dram you could drink all day. Nose: glazed bbq meats and pineapple on the nose, like a Hawaiian luau. Palate: see above.
St. George Baller Single Malt Whisky
American Single Malt — California, USATasted September 14, 2021I’m coming back to this as I’m sure my thoughts will change over the bottle. I’ll probably change the score a few times. I have to admit I’m not sure I want to drink the entire bottle. But it’s extremely unique. There’s a rose water and perfumed taste that lingers with you for awhile. Nose: plum and pepper. Get some licorice on the finish. More notes to come.
Compass Box Great King St Glasgow Blend Ex-Sherry Marrying Cask Selected By Prestige-Ledroit
Blended — ScotlandTasted September 11, 2021Lovely peated sherry. Top notch for the price. This edition takes a nice blend up a notch with the extra abv and time in the marrying cask. I’m on my second bottle and might get a third. It’s a daily drinker I always seem to come back to.
GlenAllachie 12 Year
Single Malt — Speyside, ScotlandTasted September 7, 2021Opens with an intensely spicy, dark fruit and apple aroma. You can smell the malt beneath the spice and fruit. Apple and cinnamon hit the tongue first, and are replaced by a spicy red fruit which seems to be steeped in potpourri. The finish is medium length with wood and baking spices and a bitterness that isn’t unpleasant. A few drops of Water mellow out the wood and cinnamon spice and allow the bread-y malt and stewed dark fruits to shine. The original biting finish transforms to a pleasant mouth coating warmth. Definitely interested in more from this distillery - it’s an interesting base offering. Update: really mellows as the bottle opens up. Definitely no water required, the spiciness and bitterness have been squished. Upped to 4.0. I’m thinking about replacing the bottle.
Longmorn Carn Mor 11year
Single Malt — Speyside , ScotlandTasted September 5, 2021Very clean, crisp malt. Cereal, mild vanilla and light fruits on the nose. Earthy, floral bouquet is really pleasant. Mild burn accompanies the malt into the tongue. Medium finish is clean and a sweetness lingers to provide a nice finish to the evening. This made me want to seek out some more Longmorn IBs. They’re a little pricey but the quality of this spirit and malt is evident.