Blind Tasting Competition 12: Glen Keith 20yo, 1992-2013, 49.2% – The Perfect Dram

So, trying again today. Hopefully I remember to actually save my post manually before closing my browser.

I got 20 points for region yesterday. I hope I get some more today. Not likely, but it would be nice. Somehow I knew it would be a highlands distillery, I just had no idea which one and by elimination I came to the wrong conclusion, although I eliminated a lot of correct ones.

With time the nose gets somewhat smoother even. Fudge and toffee.

Glen Keith 20. Image from Whiskybase

Glen Keith 20. Image from Whiskybase

The nose is massive with much more sherry than I expected by the color of it. Some minerals too, and slate. There’s also raisins behind it all, and their twigs for some bitterness. Dates too, and oak. It’s all rather bitter, but I love that. There is some alcohol in this, but it’s not overpowering. Some candied fruit and Christmas cake.

Half an hour in or so, I’m getting some salted caramel on the palate too.

The palate is a lot sharper than I expected. I’m still flushing some flavors from dinner, but the sherry is huge in an oaky, bitter way. Some dried fruits. All rather classic and Christmassy. Figs, dates, some date stones too. Plums, raisins. A lote more sherry notes than I’d have guessed initially.

The finish is more gentle than the palate made me expect, but the sherry is still big. The oak too, with an almost bourbon like flavor to it. The sweetness that hides behind the bitterness comes out as corn syrup here. Interesting. And good.

This is absolutely gorgeous and instantly fills the top three together with the Devil’s Casks and the SMWS Balmenach. Quite different again, but just as lovely. The finish isn’t overly long but the flavors are delicious. So much going on but all oak and sherry driven.

I’m considering Arran because of the slate on the nose and I have the idea there is something metallic on the palate. In a good way that is. I wasn’t sure about the age but I didn’t think it’d be very old. So the 12 year old Cask Strength fit, in my opinion.

Of course, I could not have been more wrong. Another zero-pointer. It turned out to be a Speyside Glen Keith, at 20 years old and my ABV was far off too. I’m starting to make an ass of myself here!

Fun thing is that I now know I should not spend a hundred bucks on a 20 year old Glen Keith but just buy the 45 euro Arran CS batches!

But still. Crap. I also have no clue on how to improve in this competition and blind tasting stuff. I try to be more analytical. Let myself be guided by my palate, but it’s not working out. On the other hand, I’ve already had 12 interesting drams of which some 6 were really good too. There have been worse weeks in my life than this!

Glen Keith 20yo, 1992-2013, 49.2%, The Perfect Dram.


About Sjoerd de Haan-Kramer

I'm very interested in booze, with a focus on whisky. I like to listen to loads of music and play lots of Magic: the Gathering, and board games too. I'm married to Anneke, have two daughters Ot and Cato, a son Moos and a cat called Kikker (which means Frog, in Dutch). I live in Krommenie, The Netherlands.
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1 Response to Blind Tasting Competition 12: Glen Keith 20yo, 1992-2013, 49.2% – The Perfect Dram

  1. Pingback: Wrapping up the Blind Tasting Competition of 2014 | Malt Fascination

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