Mystery-Tasting 1

In this series I will be reviewing three Whiskys from different regions at a time. A little unorthodox, agreed, but very educational and fun. This is the first of six parts of an exiting journey with fellow Malt-Heads.

So here come the Malts!

First up we have from the Lowlands, the only Vatted Malt in the bunch, Douglas Laings “The Epicurian”. Glen Scotia 15 year old will represent Campeltown this time and from Islay we have the “Sanaig” from my beloved Kilchoman Distillery.

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“The Epicurean”, Douglas Laing,  46.2% vol., 2016
S:3  G:4  P:1  / Color: white whine / Score:73 
Fresh nose with some zesty lime, some zwetschgen (ohne lutz), also williams-schnapps and hints of bergamot. Pear drops and a little maltiness. Lemon cake with “Glasur”(yes this is important) and also a floral note, resembling citrus flowers. On the palate its rather thin and a little fizzy (that would be the oak). Quite simple really and semi-sec. The pears are back followed by the lemon cake, this time no “Glasur” 🙂 After adding a few drops of water It looses the freshness. The pears are getting really ripe, there is also some wet hay, some malt and a floral touch. Tastewise there is really no point in adding Water (it’s only 46% anyway). The alcohol shows more now, there are obviously some young Whiskys in there (NAS). Not a good swimmer… A tiny hint of dunnage warehouse (I love that!). The finish is short with some oak.

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Glen Scotia 15 year old, 46% vol., 2016
S:6  G:5  P:2  / Color: light amber / Score:81 
Mucho more presente! Vanilla, honey, apricots, peaches, Parma ham (the good stuff), some boullion and maggikraut (a Herb). Also a salty breeze from the sea. On the palate: This has got some volume, spicy, a little sweet and some oak coats the inside of the cheeks. Fruit compote with cloves. Not quite as complex as the nose suggests. With water some fruits get lost but there is some caramel appearing. A floral note and some green bananas have been found. The taste has changed too, it’s lighter, looses volume and spiciness. More oak which makes it quite astringent. I would not advise adding water here. The finish is medium and on the dry side. A recommendable Whisky.

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Kilchoman “Sanaig” NAS, 43% vol., 2016
S:5  G:4  P:7  / Color: light amber / Score:88               Welcome to the farm!!! Huge nose with many things you would find in the country side. Horses, tack, leather saddles, wet gravel and very intense cold bonfire. Also smoked bacon, warm fruit compote and rock candy in there. After the first sip I get smoked figs (should try that) and some raisins. Taste: Eating an ashtray (yum;), a tad oily, sweet and a little oak. Malt porridge, brine and menthol cigarettes (in Whisky that’s ok). After adding water the whole is a lot more toned down. Just a hint of smoke and the horses have run away. All that’s left is the saddles in a far corner. A little bacon is left over as well. The ashtray is just half full this time and the oiliness  and the oak are gone. Nevertheless, the best swimmer so far. Finishes long and warming with an aftertaste of old cask and, you guessed it, smoke. Love this!!!

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