Monday, 9 November 2020

Glen Ord 30 (2005) Review

Hi everyone,

In my opinion, Glen Ord is definitely one of those underrated distilleries. The clean, mineral style can make for some fantastic whisky and some of the old older bottlings were really well regarded. It is also the site of one of Diageo’s huge industrial maltings, so the malt is done in house too (technically).

So I’d always been on the lookout for this old CS version at 30 years old and was lucky enough to find a small bar in Chicago that had a happy hour on rare whisky! I was being shown around by Single Cask Nation’s Joshua Hatton and he also recommended this bottle.

I actually own a barrel of Glen Ord now and Having recently got a sample, I think it’s great stuff young too.

 


Glen Ord 30 58.7%

Colour: Gold

Body: Medium

Nose: Fresh and fruity, no way I would guess that this was 30yo, freshly cut citrus peels, orange, malty, malted milk biscuit, some white chocolate, more floral as it opens up with walking through an orchard with a load of flowers in bloom, just keeps on giving and developing. Stunning nose.

Taste: Soft and unctuous, super oily and fresh, those citrus peels again, orange, lime, great fruit, incredibly structured malt and oak tannin, amazing balance, poised and structure (Joshua said austere), slight mineral component developing more and more and continuing into the finish.

Finish: Long length. Great structure again, more mineral, still oily but drying with more of the oak here but not over the top at all.

Released 2005. Undoubtedly fantastic. It doesn’t quite reach emotional levels, though the nose is up there.

89/100

 

Thanks for reading!


Updated Distillery Rankings

Scotch Review #864

Whisky Network Review #1038


Network Average: 75.2

Best Score: 94

Worst Score: 12

0-49 Terrible

50-59 Bad

60-64 Just About OK

65-69 Ok to Good

70-74 Good

75-79 Very Good

80-84 Excellent

85-89 Superb

90+ Magnificent

 

Full Disclosure Disclaimer: I currently work as the Global Brand Ambassador for Penderyn Distillery. The views expressed here are purely my own and do not reflect the views of Penderyn Distillery or The Welsh Whisky Company. I try to maintain as much objectivity as I can but feel free to take my reviews with as big a pinch of salt as you like. Furthermore, my rating scale is NOT based on a Parker type wine scoring scale or a school/college/university % or A-F grade score. You can find more on my scoring here. I apologise for any seemly low or 'bad' scores given with my system and I am sorry I can't say only nice things. Please keep in mind that I am ethically compromised and I am unable to produce 100% unbiased reviews.

Why is this here?

Wednesday, 4 November 2020

Glengoyne 30 (2017 Release) Review

Hi everyone,

Another special whisky here. Glengoyne is one of those whiskies that I always think does pretty well in Sherry. And Bourbon actually. Usually with some age on it. A little like Macallan and similar in style. But it’s usually better than Macallan. And a lot cheaper.

This is anything but cheap. In fact, it’s expensive. But we’ll keep in mind that a 30yo Macallan would be a lot more, so there’s that.

Anyway, I was very lucky to get to try this courtesy of the Swiss importer for Glengoyne, Charles Hofer SA.


Glengoyne 30 (2017) 46.8%

Colour: Dark Amber

Body: Full

Nose: Glazed cherries, Maraschino cherries, 90% dark chocolate, espresso, a tiny touch of Glengoyne heathery malt but its pretty much covered over by the intense dark sherry. Manuka honey, maple syrup, woody vanilla, beef stock cube (meaty), stewed plums. Opens up very slowly.

Taste: Soft and almost lacking power at first, grows, monolithic darkness, stewed plum and dried fig, dark chocolate, coffee grounds, silky mouthfeel. Old spice box and leathery, tobacco, dark raisin. Not really sweet, more about the dark and bitter flavours. The oak doesn't feel too much and some of the distillery character might be in there somewhere. Dark chocolate covered cherries and a bit of heather.

Finish: Medium/Long length. Dark again with more 90% dark chocolate, bitter cherry. Very soft finish.

6000 bottles, 1/3 1st fill sherry, 2/3 2nd fill. A little too bitter and dark, but it is bloody good. I get the impression that if this had just held on a little more of the abv the spirit character might have had more of a chance against the intense intense dark sherry. As it is, the complexity on this is incredible but the balance is not quite there.

Better than the 25yo though IMO, so if you loved that, definitely try and get hold of this.

83/100

 

Thanks for reading!


Updated Distillery Rankings

Scotch Review #863

Whisky Network Review #1037


Network Average: 75.2

Best Score: 94

Worst Score: 12

0-49 Terrible

50-59 Bad

60-64 Just About OK

65-69 Ok to Good

70-74 Good

75-79 Very Good

80-84 Excellent

85-89 Superb

90+ Magnificent

 

Full Disclosure Disclaimer: I currently work as the Global Brand Ambassador for Penderyn Distillery. The views expressed here are purely my own and do not reflect the views of Penderyn Distillery or The Welsh Whisky Company. I try to maintain as much objectivity as I can but feel free to take my reviews with as big a pinch of salt as you like. Furthermore, my rating scale is NOT based on a Parker type wine scoring scale or a school/college/university % or A-F grade score. You can find more on my scoring here. I apologise for any seemly low or 'bad' scores given with my system and I am sorry I can't say only nice things. Please keep in mind that I am ethically compromised and I am unable to produce 100% unbiased reviews.

Why is this here?

Tuesday, 20 October 2020

Banff 1975 Duncan Taylor Review

Hi everyone,

If you’re ever in D.C., do yourself a favour; dump the wife, dump the kids, dump your plans to go see the White House or Lincoln memorial, don’t bother with the museums or parks. Do one thing and one thing only, get your wallet and head on over to Jack Rose Dining Saloon.

Food is amazing. Atmosphere is great. And the whisky—oh, the whisky!

This one is my first Banff, a long closed distillery that we don’t see much of any more. Don’t know much about the distillery itself, other than it was blown up several times (by fires as well as bombs!).

 

Banff 1975 Duncan Taylor 45.4%

Colour: Gold

Body: Light

Nose: Old & soft, oaky, silky, floral tones, pressed flowers & homemade paper, kinda intoxicating, old Bowmore-esque, perfumes orange peel, antique furniture, super complex old nose.

Taste: Old and silky, not much power and feels a bit tired, big oak, floral here too, Wood and spice, slightly soapy lavender, Parma violets. It’s definitely over the hill though. Like an 80’s Bowmore without the smoke.

Finish: Short/Medium length. Soft and a bit flat here, loses its oomph.

My first Banff! 35yo, bottled 2011. Rarest of the Rare. Better as it opened up, though the taste and finish just remained a little lacking.

75/100


Thanks for reading! 


Scotch Review #862

Whisky Network Review #1036


Network Average: 75.2

Best Score: 94

Worst Score: 12

0-49 Terrible

50-59 Bad

60-64 Just About OK

65-69 Ok to Good

70-74 Good

75-79 Very Good

80-84 Excellent

85-89 Superb

90+ Magnificent

 

Full Disclosure Disclaimer: I currently work as the Global Brand Ambassador for Penderyn Distillery. The views expressed here are purely my own and do not reflect the views of Penderyn Distillery or The Welsh Whisky Company. I try to maintain as much objectivity as I can but feel free to take my reviews with as big a pinch of salt as you like. Furthermore, my rating scale is NOT based on a Parker type wine scoring scale or a school/college/university % or A-F grade score. You can find more on my scoring here. I apologise for any seemly low or 'bad' scores given with my system and I am sorry I can't say only nice things. Please keep in mind that I am ethically compromised and I am unable to produce 100% unbiased reviews.

Why is this here?

Friday, 9 October 2020

Ben Nevis 10 Review

Hi everyone,

Another review today, this time a more usual OB.

This is a much rarer bottling of an OB. You don’t see much Ben Nevis, but when you do, it tends to be independents. Ben Nevis is owned by Nikka, which means that a lot of it ends up being shipped to Japan, as single malt as well as being used in a bunch of Japanese blends (not much of a secret anymore).

Anyway, I’d kept my eye out for this one for a while. Thanks to Rowan for the sample.

 

Ben Nevis 10 46%

Colour: Gold

Body: Medium/Full

Nose: Sweet and malty, golden raisin, golden syrup, quite Macallan-like actually, quite oily smelling, thick and unctuous. Nice nose, though there are metallic hints at times.

Taste: Thick and oily, sweet with earthy malt backing the fruit coming through, golden raisin and golden syrup, some dried fig, slightly metallic- copper pennies.

Finish: Long length. A little harsher here with some ginger spice and the metallic note coming in stronger.

Interesting whisky! I am learning that Ben Nevis make some good stuff. There's definitely some good sherry casks in here with the quite robust spirit.

74/100

 

Thanks for reading!


Updated Distillery Rankings

Scotch Review #861

Whisky Network Review #1035


Network Average: 75.2

Best Score: 94

Worst Score: 12

0-49 Terrible

50-59 Bad

60-64 Just About OK

65-69 Ok to Good

70-74 Good

75-79 Very Good

80-84 Excellent

85-89 Superb

90+ Magnificent

 

Full Disclosure Disclaimer: I currently work as the Global Brand Ambassador for Penderyn Distillery. The views expressed here are purely my own and do not reflect the views of Penderyn Distillery or The Welsh Whisky Company. I try to maintain as much objectivity as I can but feel free to take my reviews with as big a pinch of salt as you like. Furthermore, my rating scale is NOT based on a Parker type wine scoring scale or a school/college/university % or A-F grade score. You can find more on my scoring here. I apologise for any seemly low or 'bad' scores given with my system and I am sorry I can't say only nice things. Please keep in mind that I am ethically compromised and I am unable to produce 100% unbiased reviews.

Why is this here?

Monday, 5 October 2020

Clynelish 2010 Single Cask Nation Review

Hi everyone,

You may have noticed a particular pinned post on r/Scotch today… We are doing an AMA! The first one in a while I think.

In honour of my friends from Single Cask Nation coming to join us and answer our questions, I have a review of a special whisky. This bottle of Clynelish was a birthday present from Joshua himself and he signed it too!

These guys bottle some fantastic whisky and I’ve been lucky enough to be on their podcast, One Nation Under Whisky, which was super fun. See you on Tuesday at 3pm EST for the AMA!!

 

Clynelish 2010 Single Cask Nation 58.1%

Colour: Light Gold

Body: Light/Medium

Nose: Light, ethereal and oily. Perfumed and candle waxy, marshmallow, creamy nose, white florals- Lily, Ylang Ylang, some orange blossom, chewy sweets like the white undersides of Haribo eggs.

Water: Instantly creamier, white chocolate truffles with the gooey white chocolate insides, melting marshmallow, dried banana chips, foam banana sweets.

Taste: Ethereal but full flavoured, plenty of creamy oils and perfumed white florals, some malt in there too, a little spice (white pepper) balancing nicely with a touch of dry oak. Really lovely young whisky with interesting notes and an excellent development and mouthfeel.

Water: Softer, less power, more malt, almost slightly earthy, excellent minerality coming out, clean as a blade. Lovely.

Finish: Short/Medium length. Fizzy tingling spices and oak leaving some of the oils. Not quite as excellent here.

Bottled at 9yo from a Bourbon barrel. The lightness and delicacy combined with the fullness and power is really interesting and well done.

80/100

 

Thanks for reading!


Updated Distillery Rankings

Scotch Review #860

Whisky Network Review #1034


Network Average: 75.2

Best Score: 94

Worst Score: 12

0-49 Terrible

50-59 Bad

60-64 Just About OK

65-69 Ok to Good

70-74 Good

75-79 Very Good

80-84 Excellent

85-89 Superb

90+ Magnificent

 

Full Disclosure Disclaimer: I currently work as the Global Brand Ambassador for Penderyn Distillery. The views expressed here are purely my own and do not reflect the views of Penderyn Distillery or The Welsh Whisky Company. I try to maintain as much objectivity as I can but feel free to take my reviews with as big a pinch of salt as you like. Furthermore, my rating scale is NOT based on a Parker type wine scoring scale or a school/college/university % or A-F grade score. You can find more on my scoring here. I apologise for any seemly low or 'bad' scores given with my system and I am sorry I can't say only nice things. Please keep in mind that I am ethically compromised and I am unable to produce 100% unbiased reviews.

Why is this here?

Sunday, 13 September 2020

Octomore 8.1 & 10.4 Reviews

Hi everyone,

Got two Octomore’s today. I was pretty excited about the 10.4, being the youngest and least peated Octomore that we’ve seen in a while.

Been pretty impressed by Octomore generally, though some would put them down as gimmicks that are far too expensive for what they are. I would probably agree that they are but some of the stuff is just so stunning that I don’t really mind. 8.3 and OBA Concept come to mind. And a particular cask sample I tasted at Bruichladdich a few years back.


Octomore 8.1 58%

Colour: Gold

Body: Full

Nose: Earthy, mineral, granite, rocks of various kinds. It’s funny, with Octomore I don’t tend to get a huge amount of obvious smoke but more minerality and earthy notes instead. Very typical of that here.

Taste: Soft arrival, really well balanced arrival, mineral, frying pork fat, smoke smoke smoke. Pretty delicious.

Finish: Long length. The minerals and rocks are back.

167ppm. Raw and powerful.

80/100

 

Octomore 10.4 63.5%

Colour: Bronze

Body: Full

Nose: Pure Mezcal, Agave, Tequila and cigarettes, wet rocks, driftwood, the smell of clothes after a night out clubbing with smokers, quite sexy IMO.

Water: More funk and Octomoreishness.

Taste: Sharp and intense, big wood component but a bit flat then the huge Octomore minerality and full on vanilla and yet more wood, big salt too.

Water: Still sharp, less of the wood at first then it comes in strong. Almost Bourbon-like.

Finish: Medium/Long length. Softer and fruitier, goes a bit flaccid (haha), very dry.

3yo, 88ppm and full virgin oak matured. Absolutely lovely nose, the taste and finish not so much.

75/100

 

Thanks for reading!


Updated Distillery Rankings

Scotch Review #858-#859

Whisky Network Review #1032-#1033


Network Average: 75.2

Best Score: 94

Worst Score: 12

0-49 Terrible

50-59 Bad

60-64 Just About OK

65-69 Ok to Good

70-74 Good

75-79 Very Good

80-84 Excellent

85-89 Superb

90+ Magnificent

 

Full Disclosure Disclaimer: I currently work as the Global Brand Ambassador for Penderyn Distillery. The views expressed here are purely my own and do not reflect the views of Penderyn Distillery or The Welsh Whisky Company. I try to maintain as much objectivity as I can but feel free to take my reviews with as big a pinch of salt as you like. Furthermore, my rating scale is NOT based on a Parker type wine scoring scale or a school/college/university % or A-F grade score. You can find more on my scoring here. I apologise for any seemly low or 'bad' scores given with my system and I am sorry I can't say only nice things. Please keep in mind that I am ethically compromised and I am unable to produce 100% unbiased reviews.

Why is this here?

Sunday, 6 September 2020

Yoichi 15 Review

Hi everyone,

Yes, Japanese whisky has gone nuts. Some nice standard releases from Yoichi and Miyagikyo disappeared very, very quickly, including this one. For those that don’t know, Yoichi and Miyagikyo are two of Nikka’s actual Japanese distilleries (I.e. not Ben Nevis with Japanese water added).

I was fortunate to try this in Germany last year, courtesy of my friend Michael.

 

Yoichi 15 45%

Colour: Gold

Body: Medium/Full

Nose: Fragrant and fruity, full and oily, reminiscent of Springbank, a heaviness of the malt, vanilla pod, slightly dirty smoke, light chocolate and milky coffee. A very little grassy.

Taste: Soft then oily, great oils, some spices coming in, dry oak, vanilla pod, orange, some dirty smoke.

Finish: Medium length. More fruity with lemon and orange, drying oak.

Quite complex for 15, more smoke than the 10. Should you add it to your Japanese whisky investment portfolio? Probably not at today’s prices.

77/100

 

Thanks for reading!


Updated Distillery Rankings

Japanese Review #27

Whisky Network Review #1031


Network Average: 75.2

Best Score: 94

Worst Score: 12

0-49 Terrible

50-59 Bad

60-64 Just About OK

65-69 Ok to Good

70-74 Good

75-79 Very Good

80-84 Excellent

85-89 Superb

90+ Magnificent

 

Full Disclosure Disclaimer: I currently work as the Global Brand Ambassador for Penderyn Distillery. The views expressed here are purely my own and do not reflect the views of Penderyn Distillery or The Welsh Whisky Company. I try to maintain as much objectivity as I can but feel free to take my reviews with as big a pinch of salt as you like. Furthermore, my rating scale is NOT based on a Parker type wine scoring scale or a school/college/university % or A-F grade score. You can find more on my scoring here. I apologise for any seemly low or 'bad' scores given with my system and I am sorry I can't say only nice things. Please keep in mind that I am ethically compromised and I am unable to produce 100% unbiased reviews.

Why is this here?

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