I never had a Paul John whisky before. I know they’ve been making way for a couple of years now, and that they’ve won a lot of awards. But then again, which distillery isn’t marketing their asses off and which whisky does not win awards?
In my cynical perspective, all that rambling doesn’t mean all that much and by now it’s more rare for a whisky company to NOT win an award than the other way around.
But still, I wanted to expand my horizon a little bit further and when Steve Rush announced a Paul John twitter tasting I decided to apply. I was picked from the applicants and was sent the sample. A nice solo bottle of Paul John Bold. A peated dram to be released soon.
I was doubly happy since the tasting consisted of just one dram. I like twitter tastings, but not the ones that take too long. One to three drams is more than enough. Not because the whisky starts to bore me, but because twitter does. If it takes too long the tasting notes get more and more pretentious, and people make less sense. Also, such a barrage of info, in between all other info when you’re sitting at your computer is just too much after an hour or so.
Anyway, Paul John Bold is a to-be-released soon at a RRP of some £ 46 I believe. It’s a peated whisky without an age statement.
The peat is quite gentle, but thick. There’s big hints of barley too, and a milky scent. The sweetness is rather pronounced, in a rather big and weird way. Like compost. A slightly decaying kind of sweetness. There’s a lot going on on the nose. Also match heads after a while, and some farm yard scent. Vegetal, twigs, oak, autumn leaves and spiced pear. Also, honey but not the smooth Balvenie kind, more a slightly sharp style.
The palate is quite feisty with some black pepper and dry oakiness. The sweetness is more subtle. There’s aniseed and the bitterness you get from fresh pineapple. Not the pineapple fruitiness though. The mellows out after a couple of seconds, and then turns sweetly fruity. Papaya and mango. A hint of vanilla too.
The finish is slightly metallic and there’s some tannins. Lots of wood spices and oak. Dry in an enjoyable way. Some cinnamon and lots of toasted oak.
It’s a weird dram, this. The nose is really nice with a lot of highly enjoyable scents to discover. I love the combination of all things farmy. The earthy and vegetal notes, a hint of sulfur and peat. Really good.
Then the palate and finish happen. They are, unfortunately, not that good. The bar was set high by the nose and the palate and finish don’t live up to it. The finish tries a bit harder but it’s just not that good. A shame, really. Else they’d have a cracker on their hands.
So, a great whisky for nosing, but not one for drinking. Especially at 46 quid, I think it’s a bit overpriced of what you’re getting.
Paul John Bold, 46%. Available soon for some £ 46 (€ 65)