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  1. Ledaig 10 Year

    Peated Single Malt — Islands, Scotland

    Tasted
    3.75
    3.75 out of 5 stars
    The nose has a very sharp brine and a harsh vegetal note like radishes or turnips. I get some cask wood as well, with a hint of caramel. It tastes like it smells. There is a sharp brine that tastes like a rough sea on a stormy day. The peat is vegetal and the smoke is ashy. It's like being in a seaside hut during a storm, warming yourself by a smoky fire. The malt flavor comes through the harsher elements, and hints of caramel emerge as well as shortbread. It has medicinal character character and has very strong phenol. The phenol dominates the palate. The flavors are not well balanced, but that's ok. They really battle for their place in this storm in a glass. The "lack" of balance actually makes it much more interesting. The peat phenol and brine dominate the finish. This is one of the most phenolic whiskeys I've had in recent memory - which seems odd for me to say because I love Islay whiskey, and this somehow seems more phenolic than many of those. Something savory like smoked fish emerges late. I am pleasantly surprised by this. This is a maritime whiskey even by maritime standards!
  2. The Botanist Gin

    Modern Gin — Islay, Scotland

    Tasted
    4.75
    4.75 out of 5 stars
    Probably one of the best gins that I've ever had... not surprising since it comes from Bruichladdich. This is definitely gin, but there is something undeniably Bruichladdich-ish about it. The botanicals seem coastal and windswept with fresh sea air. Something about the scent makes me think that "in 1,000 years, this would be peat" - it tastes like short, hardy shrubs, rain water, sea side. The botanicals are very earthy - I'm reminded of damp moss and clover. I get an apple scent as well, almost a hint of something like caramel or honey along with it. There is juniper, but it's well balanced by citrus, mint, and earth. This tastes like a rainy, spring day on Islay(minus the peat). As much as I love gin and tonic or a good martini, I'm not sure that I actually want to mix this... - I'd rather drink it straight like scotch.
  3. Aberlour 12 Year Double Cask Matured

    Single Malt — Highlands, Scotland

    Tasted
    4.25
    4.25 out of 5 stars
    This is just a fantastic expression of sherried Highland whiskey. This could easily become my go to. It's fantastic while not being prohibitively expensive. You aren't going to find many better whiskeys at the ~$50 price point.
  4. Old Grand-Dad Bonded Bourbon

    Bourbon — Kentucky, USA

    Tasted
    4.0
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    Good classic bourbon. I get apple and cinnamon on the nose. Perhaps some caramel. Taste has some barrel oak, corn sweetness, apple-cinnamon spice, rye spice, barrel char. Oaky, astringent finish with some peanut notes. Not the most sophisticated whiskey, but it's got a great flavor. What it does, it does well, and at the current price, you'd be hard pressed to find a better whiskey around $20. Pleasantly drinkable as is, strong enough, and currently cheap enough to make a great mixer. It's a budget gem and great daily drink!
  5. Hendrick's Midsummer Solstice

    Modern Gin — Scotland

    Tasted
    4.5
    4.5 out of 5 stars
    Very floral nose - roses maybe? Lavender. It has an oily, soapy quality as others have mentioned. Sweet, floral flavor, with a citrus, piney bite. I don't find the soapy character to be a negative in this case, it's more of an idiosyncrasy. Drank it straight- looking to use it in a gin and tonic as soon as my tonic is chilled.
  6. Aberlour 12 Year Double Cask Matured

    Single Malt — Highlands, Scotland

    Tasted
    4.0
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    This is definitely a sherry forward whiskey, and it's not subtle about it. I get barley malt on the nose mixed with sherry notes - some nuts, some raisins, some of the wine elements of sherry. Perhaps a bit grassy. This is a sweet whiskey, but not PX sweet. I can taste the malt and the sherry, but it has sort of a funky sherry flavor that is a mix of raisins, walnuts, with a slight winey/sherry sourness, almost like a fino. I get a blend of caramel, burnt brown sugar, and cocoa. There's also something very herbal and grassy in the mix. I also get a bit of barrel, perhaps a bit of char, and oak spice. The balance is not perfect, it could probably stand a few more years of aging, but that doesn't stop this from being highly enjoyable. The finish is a mix of the barrel spice, perhaps barrel char, sherry funk, and cocoa. The sherry is really a tension between sweet and dry sherry flavors. I don't know what kind of sherry barrels it's aged in, but it wouldn't surprise me if it's a mix of sweet and dry - I get something that reminds me of fino, despite it being sweet overall.
  7. Aberlour 12 Year Double Cask Matured

    Single Malt — Highlands, Scotland

    Tasted
    4.0
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    A great standby for a sherried Highland. Nice sweet sherry with some pleasantly soft malt to back it up. I get a bit of barrel spice. It's got a sweet finish with a hint of raisins. I'll need to do a more thorough tasting - I had this with some rich chocolate cake, so it's hard to parse out all the notes in contrast with the chocolate. Though the chocolate and the whiskey make for delightful companions!
  8. Green Spot Single Pot Still

    Single Pot Still — Ireland

    Tasted
    3.5
    3.5 out of 5 stars
    The nose is toasted malt, and some fruit, banana and apple skin. Rubbing alcohol. On the palate, lots of caramel, strong cereal grain, burnt malt. Perhaps a little marshmallow? Definitely some mint. A slight hint of green apple. The dry cereal notes dominate the finish. It tastes like having a mouthful of grain. There is a lot going on here, but I feel like there is no balance- everything is just all over the place. It's better than any other Irish whiskey that I've had. I like it, but it's just ok. I have to confess, Irish whiskey has repeatedly failed to impress me. Every bottle I have bought, in every price range, really struggles to justify its place in my collection. For the price, I can probably think of a dozen bourbons, a dozen ryes, and 2 dozen single malt scotches that I'd enjoy more(some of which are even cheaper). It does add something different to my collection, which is ok, I guess.
  9. Stranahan's Diamond Peak (old recipe)

    American Single Malt — Colorado, USA

    Tasted
    4.0
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    The nose is barrel char and fruity notes - banana? Rubbing alcohol. On the palate this is very chocolatey, bitter dark chocolate, rubbing alcohol, char, dry oak. The finish is long with bitter chocolate, wood, and grass. Some of the more bitter flavors run a little too wild in the end for my taste, but I can appreciate this in that it's different. Edit: I normally don't add water to stuff below the mid 50s ABV, but I did in this case, and it makes a world of difference- the nose becomes very malty, with hints of spice, and a little bitter chocolate. The change in taste is even more dramatic. The barley malt really jumps forward, and the bitter chocolate notes take a back seat. It has a nice spice, somewhere between ground ginger and white pepper, and develops a sour apple character. The finish is spice, malt, oak, and just a hint of baking chocolate. I would not drink this again without water, but with it, it's almost a different spirit.
  10. Ardbeg Supernova 2019

    Peated Single Malt — Islay, Scotland

    Tasted
    5.0
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    The nose is much less smokey than I expected, but smoke is clearly there. It smells coastal, a bit like a pier. It has a sweet, phenolic character. On the palate I get salty smoke, with a tingly brine on the tip of my tongue. The salt evolves and lingers. The smoke is dry at first and becomes sweet. It has a savory flavor reminiscent of smoked fish. Dry herbs, sage, pine, thyme. A bit of pepper mingles with the salt. The finish is salt, smoke, and is very astringent. I was pretty unimpressed, dare I say dissapointed at the initial experience, so I added a drop of water, something I tend not to do even with cask strength whiskey. I think this needs it. The nose becomes much more pungent- assaulting - more salty than smokey, savory smoked pork, maybe a touch of apple. It seems saltier on the tongue, harsher, more raw, like surf breaking on rocks. The sweet phenol is still there, but it gives way to a savory flavor. I do get a hint of pineapple- I still get sage, pine needles on the forest floor. The finish is long, harsh salt spray, pineapple, lingering smoke, blackened charred firewood. At this price point, it's competing with the glorious beast that is Octomore, and that is a tough sell. This is great(with water), but I think Octomore edges it out.
Results 11-20 of 212 Tastes