Aye, you can tell I’m pleased with this review and it’s not just the Tasting notes, the Conclusion and the note from the Ed(itor) but also Joe’s fantastic “rant about attitude towards blends” that is so incredibly appropriate.
I, of course, fully agree with Joe as it is a prejudice that raises itself regularly at whisky festivals. You know it is almost unbelievable but we have even had people walk past our stand turning down free whisky saying “uh no its a blend” – eh naw… its free whisky! However we have had self confessed Malt whisky only drinks reservedly accept a wee free dram of Tweeddale and exclaim “well if I hadn’t have know it was a blend I would have sworn it was a Malt”. Which is why I am a great advocate of blind tastings and quality Scotch whisky!
I can’t say too much without being hypocritical as when I was a younger, less knowledge man I too suffered from the superb marketing behind some single malts. It IS about the wood, the type of cask, the ageing and how you bring that whisky together for bottling.
Anyway that’s my rant over with…
I urge you to read Joe’s second review on the Whisky Lounge website blog, just click on the link above or read the selected extracts below.
The nose reminds me of trifle with honey and toffee sauce drizzled over the top, served in a coal scuttle with just the slightest hint of some peat helping to balance the sweet dessert tones and suggesting a well rounded flavour.
The palate gives me a big lovely wedge of honey dew melon with a slight lemon sherbet quality in flavour and feel. It’s quite tingly, but then mellows out, becomes soft and creamy and descends into an oaky, malty, biscuit free-for-all with a mellowed-out old peaty referee keeping it all in check.
The Finish. Really clean, incredibly well rounded with a lovely citrusy biscuit flavour and the slightest trail of coal smoke”.
Overall I think this is a real winner. A very good, well rounded, well-balanced blend that at around £30 for 70cl is a good buy. You can really feel good grain whisky raising its head amongst those more hefty malts and that for me is key, and is where a lot of blends can struggle to deliver.
An old lesson in great whisky-making, blending and overflowing in provenance which should have those die-hard, ‘never drink a blend’ types looking for another glass full. A cracking dram!
Now any of you at the Newcastle fest that’s coming up will be able to meet Alasdair. He’ll be there along with his whisky and obviously will be able to tell his whiskies story far better, and do it more justice than I ever could.
Cheers and thanks for reading,
“Note from the Ed(itor);
I sit here reading and editing this report as I enjoy my first sample of this little beauty. It is quite the dark horse. Extremely dark, spicy and intriguing. More than a little peat and very morish. For those of you who like the BNJ (Bailie Nicol Jarvie), this is almost a Director’s Cut of that excellent whisky… Might have to have a little more… Night, night”.