As I’ve said plenty of times before, Master of Malt is not only a shop but also a bottler. Although, between the stuff they produce, have produced and bottle under one of their labels, you’d start to think it’s the other way around.
Of course, with their sights on also selling their stuff they’ve put some of their brands out there through a subsidiary, like Maverick Drinks and The Blended Whisky Company. But, who are they kidding, right?
Anyway, when they won their millionth award recently (congrats), this time for the Lost Distilleries Blend, they also sent out samples. Yours truly was among the happy recipients. Ridiculous buzy-ness and me trying to cut down on blogging and drinking made me stash this sample for a short while. Now is the time to post the review.
The whisky consists of Rosebank, Littlemill, Imperial, Mosstowie, Glen Keith and Port Ellen. This would make a Blended Malt, but I believe there is also some Port Dundas in there.
I’m not sure what’s going on at Master of Malt, but on the nose I find that fennel-like smell again. It does, however, fade quickly to show hints of virgin oak. Strange, for a whisky made up of whiskies that are all over 20 years old! It starts showing barley, strong malt and some butteriness after that.
This is where this baby really starts pleasing. The nose didn’t do much for me but the palate sure makes up for that. It’s very sharp, but in a good way. It still leaves room for flavours of white pepper, new oak, cane sugar. It’s drying with a malty quality to it. After a while of it ‘swimming’ I started getting strong hints of various fruits. Plums, pineapple, orange. Very nice!
The finish has oak too, but much more mature. Grains, sub tropical fruits as above. It’s not too long but very yummy.
I have to excuse myself for generally not being a huge fan of blended whiskies. That might be unjust, and come off snobby, but it’s not in that way. I usually find the mix of various distilleries to produce an overly complex flavour palate in which none of the whiskies involved really get to shine.
In this case, I’m not sure that’s happening. I do find the nose only so-so, but the palate and finish more than make up for that. But, I still can’t fathom what’s going on with Master of Malt and fennel. Maybe that Cold Distilled Absinthe tainted some of their equipment? I guess that’s not possible.
After reading up on Port Dundas, I understand that was closed only in 2010. There might be some very young whisky in this one to explain the fennel and virgin oak flavours. I often mistake ‘virgin oak flavours’ for new whisky. And the other way around.
Anyway, I do like this whisky. I can see it winning awards, but to come to a proper conclusion I would need to taste all the contestants separately, and blind. That’d be awesome, wouldn’t it?
I think I still haven’t given a proper ‘comment’ on the whisky like on most whisky blogs including my own. That’s because I’m not entirely convinced. The fruits and oakiness on the palate and finish were awesome. I just can’t shake the new oak feeling on the nose that reminds me of under age whisky, or that Old Potrero I recently finished.
Add to that that this baby will set you back over € 400…
Then again, people who do understand Blended Whisky said this was great…
The Lost Distilleries Blend, Batch 4, 50.9%, The Blended Whisky Company/Master of Malt. Of course, it’s available there.
Thanks to Master of Malt for the sample!