The left over tasting is the same concept as yesterday’s bottoms up tasting, just named differently. This one was organized by a whisky shop/liquor store in IJmuiden, which is a bit closer to home, but just as far by public transport. Since I had the idea that it was going to be way past the bus schedule before I wanted to leave I went by bicycle.
The tasting was a fair bit larger, some 50 people instead of the 15 in Den Bosch, but that had everything to do with the size of the room in which the tasting was held.
St. George Chapter 6, 46%
This is a very young English whisky, from the only distillery in England. It never held much appeal to me, but since it is in Ian Buxton’s excellent “101 whiskies to try before you die”, I wanted to try it, just to check it off. The nose give away the fact that it is a young whisky right away. Some dry bread and other cereals. Not much wood influence. Rather bland. The taste and finish don’t add much to it.
Jack’s Pirate Whisky 11yo, 59.9%, Islay (Jack Wieber)
A pretty decent Islay whisky, albeit a little one dimensional. Some light smoke and bread crust in the nose and a little vanilla. The taste is a bit more full bodied and more smoky. Quite peppery as well.
Three Ships South African Whisky 5yo, 40%
Three Ships is a blended whisky consisting of South African and Scottish whiskies. There are also varieties that consist only of South African whiskies. The nose is rather full with a little wood. The taste is somewhat sweeter than expected but it displays all qualities of a well made, but rather simple dram. Far from unpleasant, though.
Fleeting, Michel Couvreur, 47%, Single Oloroso Cask, 1995
A very obscure bottler with some interesting cask choices for finishes. The one I tried didn’t give me much information about the distillery or the region. The nose reminded me of the sweet wine finishes that Bruichladdich produced. This winey sweetness gives a lot of fruit flavours but comes off as a bit strange.
Old Rip van Winkle 10yo, 45%
One of the few bourbons on the table, but a very good one. The sweet corn flavour is a little restrained, which gives the whiskey a Scotch like complexity. A little dry with some soft tobacco flavours and a lot of different spices.
Wild Turkey 12yo, 50.5%
This is more a bourbon as you get them. Lots of full bodied sweetness of the corn in there. Also some spicyness and chocolate in there. 12 years of ageing has given it some time to settle, all the flavours are very nicely woven together.
Glenmorangie Finealta, 46%
The newest addition to the Glenmorangie range and a peated one at that! I was a bit scared that this was only made because Glenmorangie wanted a piece of the peated whisky pie. It maybe is, but it is a rather nice expression at that. Some smoke and creme brulee on the nose. The taste is pretty malty. In the end it is a very typical Glenmorangie with a little peat added to it. Which is good.
Longrow Tokaji, 10yo, 55.6%
I was a bit hesitant to try it, since everybody warned me about this whisky. The Tokaji was supposed to be the worst Longrow ever, as I had been told. While it isn’t that bad, its not good either. It has the overly sweet character of a dessert wine, not unlike PX sherry. The bad thing is that it is cloyingly sweet with stale, old herbs in there. The mouth is quite dry and (no surprise) sweet with some light smoke. The finish is a tad bitter and the thing in its entirety is simple not good.
Jameson 18, 40%
Another whiskey for Buxton’s ’101′. Those nose is very soft. After tasting several whiskies I had the idea my glass was empty. The taste is rather surprising, with a lot of soft vanilla and some coconut. There are some other flavours in there too, but it is all very smooth and easy going. Despite that, it is a very well made whiskey that surprised my in a good way.
Same reason to taste it as above. If there is something as a typical Irish whiskey scent, its in here. Probably the unmalted barley. Some cereal, the taste is very gentle, too gentle, even after the Jameson. I ate a cube of cheese just before and it couldn’t even overcome that. The finish is the best part of this whiskey with a surprising sherry-like sweetness and taste.
Glencadam 15, 46%
This is a brand that i am rather unfamiliar with, but I remembered that the last time I tasted it, it kind of surprised me. In a good way. It displays a lot of vanilla and some citrus like notes. It must have been some very good bourbon casks. The whisky reminds me of Glenesk, but that might just be wishful thinking. The taste is rather dry and chalky, but I like that in this case.
Port Askaig 17, 45.8%
The precentage might tell you that it is a Talisker, since they bottle almost everything at that ABV. It is, as far as I know, a Caol Ila. It has some straight forward Caol Ila smokiness, maybe some smoked eel. An okay whisky, but I stopped taking notes at this point!
In the end I had to ride my cycle back home, with a rather sore ass. I think, since I had been just talking with some people for the last two hours and I had tasted only tiny drops of each one I could have driven back home. I didn’t like that idea when I was cycling past the docks of IJmuiden, with the wind ravaging me. The tasting was very good and I met some really nice people, some of who I already knew, some new ones. I hope to be invited next year as well!