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  1. #31
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    Re: Wednesday Tastings!

    I've always been a Springbank fan but recently I've been smitten by Longrow. I really enjoyed the 11yr CS and a few weeks back I got to try the cab finished 11yr CS. I'm not a huge fan of wine finished whisky, but it was a great pour. The smoke and fruit from the cab barrel were in great balance (sweet and smokey, with a light dry finish). I'm glad you enjoyed the sherry, Bruce.
    Justin

  2. #32
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    Re: Wednesday Tastings!

    Quote Originally Posted by AaronWF View Post
    That's quite a progression Bruce! Rum always makes me sleepy, so I call them out as the culprit here. Throwing the Campbeltown malts in after all the others sounds like it would be quite the curveball, but sounds like you managed to hang onto it. Love those Longrows and I'm not sure which one would be better to have first... Sounds like your way fit the bill though! Cheers!
    Always a bit tricky when you have a mix of things. But we have a lot of experience!

    Not knowing anymore than what you told me about the Longrows I thought I would try them what seemed lightest to heaviest in flavor rather than proof. Since the Longrow has the peat (which I think is more accurately described as you have, earthy, as compared to other styles of peated whisky). It seemed to work for us!
    That yella whiskey runnin' down my throat like honey dew vine water and I took another slash…

    Nullum Gratuitum Prandium
    Ne Illegitimi Carborundum

  3. #33
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    Re: Wednesday Tastings!

    Quote Originally Posted by Dolph Lundgren View Post
    I've always been a Springbank fan but recently I've been smitten by Longrow. I really enjoyed the 11yr CS and a few weeks back I got to try the cab finished 11yr CS. I'm not a huge fan of wine finished whisky, but it was a great pour. The smoke and fruit from the cab barrel were in great balance (sweet and smokey, with a light dry finish). I'm glad you enjoyed the sherry, Bruce.
    I do like the Sprinkbank 12 CS but didn't have a lot of other Springbank/Longrow experience prior to this. only other bottle I have had was a very nice but subtle Longrow CV NAS. I really did enjoy that Longrow 10yo with the wonderful balance of sherry and earthy peatiness.
    That yella whiskey runnin' down my throat like honey dew vine water and I took another slash…

    Nullum Gratuitum Prandium
    Ne Illegitimi Carborundum

  4. #34
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    Re: Wednesday Tastings!

    Ok, let's see if i can do this while I can still remember most of it and before the nap time bell rings...

    Our only June Wednesday tasting so we tried to make it a good one!

    Wednesday tasting 18JUN14 1.JPGWednesday tasting 18JUN14 2.JPGWednesday tasting 18JUN14 3.JPG

    Today it was an attempt to do some comparisons. We started off with the FR 2014 LESB compared to a FR gift shop bottle of OESF that I happened to have. It was also 11 yo and bottled in August 2013. If we are presuming the 2014 was bottled about April 2014 then it appears that these two whiskies that aged most likely very near to one another in the same warehouse Barrel 47-4R versus 47-4Q), possibly came from the same distillation and are perhaps at most a few months apart in age at most.

    Wednesday tasting 18JUN14 4.JPG

    These two were tasted blind. Initially they were very similar with the previously reported peppery spicy tones and some very nice fruit in the mid palate with a dry finish. With a touch of water the Limited Edition seemed to blossom with increased fruit flavor while the gift shop bottle did not seem to handle a bit of water as well and seemed to be a bit muted. Everyone correctly identified the LE bottle but no one felt it was worth the extra $40 or so to get it over the gift shop bottle if you could. Hmm...

    The first two were the only ones done blind. Next up was the just arrived store pick of SAOS at 8yo and 107.8 proof against a TPS barrel 362 pick at 10yo and and 111.6 pf. The local pick is the high rye mashbill (we think!). Everyone really liked barrel 666 and felt it had a solid nose and a good balance of rye spice and some nice caramel notes that worked well together. The 10yo seemed a bit muted by comparison and perhaps it was because it was the lower rye mashbill.

    We then moved on to a bit of an oddity. This was a comparison of a Milroy private label of 14yo Dutch sherried single malt. The color was impressively dark but the bottle was quite familiar. It was a dead ringer for the Zuidam Millstone 100 rye bottle I happened to have suggesting it was sourced from Zuidam. I also happened to have a 12yo bottle of the Zuidam sherried single malt so I brought that along for comparison. Both were at 46 proof. The Milroy bottle had a strong PX sherry nose but the palate seemed a bit one dimensional and much drier than the nose suggested. The 12yo did not have as strong a nose but seemed a bit more balanced with much better weight and mouthfeel. Neither was bad but the 12yo was the better one here.

    Then it was on to the Nikka Whisky from the barrel. A delightfully balanced whisky with really just a hint of smoke that seems to show that a blend should not be dismissed out of hand, at least if it is from Japan! The Nikka really reminded me of the Springbank 12 CS so I need to compare that one with it next time. It was compared to the last bit of a G&M Caol Ila finished in Madiera wood. This was much more classically Islay in style and not really a good comparison to the Nikka but an excellent whisky in its own right. The remnants of this bottle were gifted to me following the recent GBS Dark Side event in May and I certainly wouldn't mind getting another bottle or two of this one! The classic Caol Ila smoke was tempered with a delightful fruit rancio note that I happen to really enjoy presumably coming from the Madeira aging.

    Finally we finished with the surprising Westland Cask 29 American Single malt. This would have been a good comparison to the Nikka but instead it was compared to another young peated whisky, the Kilchoman 2010 Summer Release. The Westland, while young, did not taste overly young to me but the smoke was really more in the background. Perhaps the Caol Ila had beaten up the palate a bit but this wasn't overly smokey and was instead a quite pleasant whisky in its own right. The Kilchoman on the other hand was an in your face peat bomb like many in that line and while very good it was not a particularly good comparison to the Westland.

    And now it is time for my na...
    That yella whiskey runnin' down my throat like honey dew vine water and I took another slash…

    Nullum Gratuitum Prandium
    Ne Illegitimi Carborundum

  5. #35
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    Re: Wednesday Tastings!

    The 4Roses deal was pretty amazing. How often do you run into bottles that literally aged together? Those 2 had to have touched one another. I checked my 4RSBLE and its 47-1J @ 54.6%, so likely close, but not as close as those 2. Thanks again for the taste of your 4RLE.

  6. #36
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    Re: Wednesday Tastings!

    I just recently discovered your thread and thank you for all your wonderful comparisons. I had no idea that Bookers had a roundtable batch released. I typically always have a bottle of Bookers around for making my Old Fashioneds, and the current bottle I have is a 2013-7. I did notice it was better than the last couple of Bookers but just attributed to a lucky batch. Now I'm purposely going to look for another 2013-7 or 2013-6.

    I also did a side by side comparison between a store select OESF to this year's LE. Unfortunately my store select is probably not quite as good as yours. Both of my bottle is a lower proof and my LE doesn't take water as well as the store select.

  7. #37
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    Re: Wednesday Tastings!

    Quote Originally Posted by HD 335 View Post
    I just recently discovered your thread and thank you for all your wonderful comparisons. I had no idea that Bookers had a roundtable batch released. I typically always have a bottle of Bookers around for making my Old Fashioneds, and the current bottle I have is a 2013-7. I did notice it was better than the last couple of Bookers but just attributed to a lucky batch. Now I'm purposely going to look for another 2013-7 or 2013-6.

    I also did a side by side comparison between a store select OESF to this year's LE. Unfortunately my store select is probably not quite as good as yours. Both of my bottle is a lower proof and my LE doesn't take water as well as the store select.
    Useful to note that the SBLE is obviously a collection of individual barrels and so will still likely have some variation from bottle to bottle as evidence by the fairly wide range of proofs. We were just fortunate to happen to have a gift store selection that appeared to be right next to an LE bottle for comparison. I would love to try a couple of different versions, especially proof levels, of the 2014 SBLE but they are hard to find of course and I just don't have the desire to chase them. If one happens to fall in my lap, well that's a whole nuther barrel o' bourbon!

    SBLE can be interesting but the SmBLE I find more consistently enjoyable to just sit and drink for being a blend that is generally the same from bottle to bottle.
    That yella whiskey runnin' down my throat like honey dew vine water and I took another slash…

    Nullum Gratuitum Prandium
    Ne Illegitimi Carborundum

  8. #38
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    Re: Wednesday Tastings!

    Nap time got the better of me this week so I will have to post based on my recollections from yesterday!

    This week we had hoped to have some rums provided by a local distributors but that fell through at the last minute so I scraped together a few odds and ends for tasting. Unfortunately the picture tools seems to be on the fritz again so as I can't seem to load them directly from my computer today.

    We started this time a bit differently with a newly arrived beer, La Socarrada. This was a Spanish beer brewed with rosemary and rosemary honey. Pretty tasty and a nice summer option with clear hints of rosemary and a sweet finish from the honey. Clearly unfiltered as it had bits of lovely flotsam and jetsam throughout. Also picked up the new Love Child #4 from Boulevard which had just arrived.

    A recent barrel pick of a Maestro Dobel tequila that I had the opportunity to help pick arrived this week so I brought a couple of tequilas to compare it to. Dobel is aged tequila from a blend of reposado, anejo and extra anejo that is then filtered to remove most of the color. We chose the sample finished in French oak barrels. I must say this turned out quite well. The Centinela simply didn't hold up well and was in fact a bit disappointing in general. The El Mayor is a nice low priced option and I enjoy both the reposado and this anejo that I brought. It was quite good but still came in second behind the Dobel. I presume the color of the Dobel is to reach out to the vodka crowd but this had a lovely balance of agave and wood with a nice spicy undercurrent throughout the palate. A bit of a surprise that it was such a crowd pleaser.

    From here we moved on to a Bushmills single malt that may or may not be about 19yo (Bushmills couldn't or wouldn't give me any details on this bottle which seemed odd) "mellowed" in a rum cask. This was not what I expected. It had some pretty significant rancio tropical fruit notes overlying the relatively light whiskey. This might need a little air time to open up so I won't pass judgment yet.

    I had recently acquired the Dos Maderas 5+3 sherry finished rum so this was another opportunity to compare it to the Dos Maderas 5+5 and one of my favorites, the Navazos Palazzi rum which is a "5+10" rum that is aged 5 years and then finished for 10 years in Oloroso sherry casks (I like this so much I just splurged on getting another bottle!). The 5+3 is drier as expected than the 5+5 which has 2 years of PX sherry aging. I like them both, the 5+5 maybe a bit more than the 5+3 (but then I have a sweet tooth and love PX sherry) but neither can stand up to the Navazos Palazzi for me.

    This was followed by a new bottle of Goslings Old Rum compared to my dark rum standard bearer, the El Dorado 15. The Goslings may have been the biggest disappointment of the day as it was simply unremarkable to me and didn't come close to the classic ED15.

    The plan was to finish off the day with several IB whisky options but by then we were beginning to run out of steam so we decided to put those aside for another day. They included a port finished whisky from Imperial from G&M, a 22yo Glencadam from Exclusive Malts and a 13yo Murray McDavid Bunnahabhain finished in Chateau Lafite casks. I confess I could not wait to try the Bunnahabhain so I took a little taste of that to finish the day. It had been on the shelf a while and wine cask finishes can be a bit of a gamble but I got a bit of a discount on it and I think I will be glad I did! It will return with the others for another Wednesday tasting.
    That yella whiskey runnin' down my throat like honey dew vine water and I took another slash…

    Nullum Gratuitum Prandium
    Ne Illegitimi Carborundum

  9. #39
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    Re: Wednesday Tastings!

    Another Wednesday, another tasting! This week we started with bourbon and finished with scotch (and a couple of ryes thrown in for good measure!).

    Today featured the "Orphan" barrels. It included a bottle that had been open since it first appeared here in late March/early April and had only a few ounces left in the bottle against a fresh unopened bottle of Barterhouse. That was followed by an unopened bottle of Rhetoric and a bottle of Old Blowhard that had been open for a while but only had a small amount gone.

    In the Barthouse v. Barterhouse showdown the open bottle was the preferred bourbon with a nice caramel component and lightly dry finish while the new bottle seemed a bit closed with more alcohol, less caramel and a drier less pleasant finish. Hopefully it too will improve with time.

    The Rhetoric was drier and more woody than the Barterhouse but did a have a bit creamier mouth feel (none of them were as dense and oily as I might have liked for bourbon this age. Presumably it is all chill filtered and perhaps that makes a difference? and had a nice fruit note undertone that helped it a bit. Still, I think I liked the long open bottle of Barterhouse better.

    The Old Blowhard was the real surprise here though as it had a little fuller mouth feel and more of that fruit flavor the Rhetoric was trying to show. That flavor came through into the finish and while it was dry and moderately woody it was not unpleasantly so. Probably the best of the bourbons.

    Next we worked in a couple of SAOS ryes. One was a store pick from a neighboring store that was 8yo and 121.8pf (Barrel #186). This had an explosion of fruit up front that was very nice but not necessarily what we expected from a rye. Little or no spice to speak of and then sadly it finished with a slightly sour bitter note on the finish that really detracted from the overall experience. But easy to drink even at 120 pf. We compared it to a 7yo 99pf off the shelf bottle and this was much more like a rye with a bit of spice that coated the palate nicely. Only shortcoming here was a bit of a bland finish. The off the shelf bottle was definitely the preferred whiskey.

    After a bit of a break we moved on to Scotland where we started with a 22yo Glencadam from Exclusive Malts which is a Highland bottling with no particular finish as best we could tell. This was at cask strength of 100.8pf but a bit pricey. A very pleasant pour with a real creamy sweet fruit character but it didn't really grab you attention. Would make a lovely summer pour but not something I would seek out again.

    Next up was an Imperial from the G&M "Private Collection" that was finished in Port wood. Imperial is currently closed (since 1998) but not torn down at present. It had been reopened in 1991 which is when this bottle hade been distilled and was 15yo. Not much detail on the port finishing but it must have been a pretty fresh barrel as it has tons of fruit that dominate the whiskey. A bit one dimensional but very pleasant.

    Next we checked out the newest Ardbeg, the Auriverdes, and compared it to an Uigeadail from probably last year. There really was no comparison as the oogie was the superior whisky and the newest Ardbeg proves to be another disappointment. Not quite down to Ardbog level but I think you might find the lovely balance of peat, smoke and sherry to be far better in the Uigeadail. I know I did!

    Last but by no means least was another taste of the Murray McDavid heavily peated Bunnahabhain that was finished in Chateau Lafite casks. Still the best of the bunch!

    Still having trouble with pictures but it seems to be at work so I blame it on that.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    That yella whiskey runnin' down my throat like honey dew vine water and I took another slash…

    Nullum Gratuitum Prandium
    Ne Illegitimi Carborundum

  10. #40
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    Re: Wednesday Tastings!

    Many thanks for your notes. I also agree that nose for Barterhouse is actually very pleasant, nice sweet long caramel but the taste and finish leaves something to be desired. It lacked complexity and seemed bland. Rhetoric has a similar nose, but a bit more alcohol. I like the mouth feel and the clove spice, with a dry and oaky finish. I haven't tried OB yet, as I just can't bring myself to spend $160 + taxes where I'm located. However I get a feeling that maybe my favorite among the three.

    Interesting notes for SAOS 8 year rye. I just posted notes on mine on another thread, but did come away feeling slightly disappointed. It's not a bad rye by any means, but I'm starting to realized there is very few LDI ryes I really like. WFE 4 year is nice, but I primarily enjoy WT101 rye. I hated the Bulliet Rye and the Angels Envy rye has been sitting on my bar for months untouched up until recently when I felt that I needed to start clearing out some bottles.

    I think you may have squashed my curiosity for the Auriverdes. It isn't on my short list, but after reading your comparison to Uigeadail, I'll just seek it out in a bar.

 

 

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