I always thing it’s funny when a brand like ‘Malts of Scotland’ releases a whisky that’s neither a malt, nor from Scotland. Of course, with all the Irish stuff and American releases that are coming out from bottlers, this happens quite a bit more than it used to, but I still think it’s funny.
This Heaven Hill comes from German bottler ‘Malts of Scotland’, and surprisingly, it’s from a regular bourbon barrel. I’ve not done a full count, but Malts of Scotland released quite a few Heaven Hills from sherry casks, port pipes and even ex-peated-whisky casks.
Some of those were pretty good, but especially the fortified wine casks were far too sweet in my opinion. That shouldn’t be too surprising since bourbon tends to be on the sweet side anyway, and then you add more sweetness to it…
Anyway, this one then. A regular one. Let’s see how it fairs.
Really solid bourbon, with lots of corn, sweetness and rich oak. It’s light with a hint of menthol. Cherries and blackberries.
The palate has a lot of osky dryness, with some sweetness to back it up. Cherries and blackberries again. Cigars and autumn leaves. Proper bourbon.
The finish gentle, with some sweetness and warmth lingering. Some oak towards the end.
I can see this working well on a summer night, on the porch, in a rocking chair. ‘Uncle Jesse’ style. Not that I have a porch, or that summer was particularly sunny this year, but still.
I’m chucking this one in as a bonus, since I only had a sample and I can’t find a picture of the bottle anywhere.
Heaven Hill 5yo, bottled in 2000, 63% – Cadenhead
Very fiery bourbon, no pun intended. Lots of chili heat with lots of sweet corn and typical American white oak. Quite light, with some rather crisp spices. Sage and basil.
Sharp, but in such a way that it takes a few seconds before you realize it. Very dry because of the high ABV, with lots of weight and richness. Cola, corn syrup, sage. A very interesting way and a flavor combination that makes me want to eat barbecue.
After about 20 to 30 seconds the heat becomes rather unbearable.
And then we continue straight on towards the rich finish, with more of the flavors from before. Cola, barbecue, marinade, corn syrup, brown sugar, maple syrup. A lot of things that work very well in a bourbon, all combined.
Interestingly the massive sharpness takes it down a notch, but enough notches were earned that it still is quite ‘up there’. The hints of cola and barbecue were very nice! It’s this one, on Whiskybase, but it doesn’t have a picture…