Blind Tasting Competition day 13: Isle of Jura 1988, 51.2% – The Whiskyman for Sweden

Where yesterday saw me scoring for guessing the correct distillery, today saw me staying just clear of zero points based on a wild ABV guess.

Just for the sake of completeness. After 13 days, you can technically have 1300 points. The guy that’s in the lead has 629. That’s how ridiculously tough this is. Not surprising, with some 50000 options available, and everything being allowed (Balmenach single casks, and a random Ailsa Bay and such).

Technically, I’m glad I’m getting any points at all. And with me being somewhere around the 30th position, out of seventy-odd participants, I’m a happy camper. It does, however, make me doubt me ability to properly assess a whisky, and therefore the rights I have to rambling on about booze on this here blog.

Anyway, today’s dram turned out to be a properly aged Jura, without being heavily peated. Those are rare. Add to that that is was quite potable, and you can count those releases on one hand (per year, there’s more in total).

Image from Whiskybase

Image from Whiskybase

On the nose it’s rather comparable to yesterday’s Clynelish, albeit a bit lighter and sweeter. A bit more mint on the nose, and oak. Some resin, vanilla and a bit creamy. More like a creme brulee, with a hint of caramel.

The palate is dry with oak and caramel. Some vanilla and quite a fierce zing of chili pepper in there too. Some resin, and that creaminess is back too. Rather interesting.

The finish has that sharpness of the chili again, and that’s happening in a good way. Honey, caramel and a little more oak. Some honeycomb, maybe?

With all the gentle flavors of oak, honey and vanilla going on I immediately went for a Speyside dram. Backed up by statistics I was certain I would be getting some points. My surprise was bigger than I expected with it being a Jura whisky. Quite a-typical for that distillery, but a nice dram in itself. I can see why this was picked by The Whiskyman.

Anyway, it’s a nice dram, but in my opinion, it’s the hint of chili pepper that makes in interesting. The rest is nice and tasty and all, but a bit generic as well. I’m missing the funkiness of Jura, which is a risky thing to have in a whisky. A little goes a long way and a lot of Juras have way too much of it. But in this case I would have liked to find it.

So, I was 1.2% off in the ABV, which netted me 8 points, and that’s what I have to go with today. It doesn’t do much for me in the ranking, but it doesn’t hurt either. Not many people got lots of points here.

Isle of Jura 1988, 24yo, Bourbon cask, 51.2%, The Whiskyman, exclusively for Sweden. No longer available.


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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