Thursday, 12 September 2019

Eddu Silver & Gold (French Buckwheat whisky) Reviews

Hi everyone,

Two more quick reviews today, this time for some random French whisky I tried a couple of years ago now.
Eddu is a whisky made at Distillerie des Menhirs in Brittany and started making whisky in 1998. But not from barley, from Buckwheat.
Weirdly, Buckwheat isn’t anything like Wheat because it isn’t a grass and, if anything, looks more like a flower. Anyway, the stuff has seeds (which are classed as ‘pseudocereals’) which can be malted, mashed and distilled. It is then distilled in a double distillation on a direct-fired Alembic-style still.

Eddu 'Silver' Buckwheat Whisky 40%
Colour: Gold
Body: Light/Medium
Nose: Calvados, really. Loads of red and green apple.
Taste: Yep, really Calvados-esque, a sweet style of Calvados, apple juice, red apple, green apple.
Finish: Short length.
No harshness but youthful. Really not sure I’d be able to pick out a specific flavour the Buckwheat is bringing to the table. Really can’t give this an amazing score as a whisky though, partially because it tastes more like Calvados.
52/100

Eddu 'Gold' Buckwheat Whisky 43%
Colour: Gold
Body: Medium
Nose: Toffee, vanilla, apple, some oak. A little deeper than the Silver.
Taste: Toffee apples, soft spice, more mature than the silver but still not a huge amount of complexity.
Finish: Medium length. Some oak.
Very apple-y again, which perhaps is the style of the whisky or from the Buckwheat. Either way, if you like apples and/or Calvados you’ll likely enjoy these.
61/100

Thanks for reading!

French Whisky Reviews #3-#4
Whisky Network Reviews #931-#932

Network Average: 75.1
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 a 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.

Wednesday, 11 September 2019

Ardmore 2004 66.73 & 1998 66.82 Reviews

Hi everyone,

Picking back up where we left off, I was in Toronto and met up with the awesome people of the Toronto Whisky Society. They proceeded to ply me with a bunch of whiskies, particularly Ledaig.
I think u/Devoz had these two beasts. So, thank you sir.
Ardmore is awesome stuff and we just selected one for one of the r/scotch bottlings. But these two casks I have been very interested in because they are quite unusual. A white wine hogshead and a sherry Gorda. White wine casks are very rarely used for whisky and these SMWS bottlings have been some of the few. The sherry Gordas, on the other hand, have become a little legendary for their huge sulphury and strange flavours.

Ardmore 2004 66.73 SMWS 61.1%
Colour: Gold
Body: Full
Nose: Really cool. Kinda medicinal, bandages, sulphury fruit, white peach, oily machine parts,some dirty vanilla, more smoke coming out now. Great nose.
Taste: Sweet start, white grape, dry oak, really oily, clean medicinal notes, bandages and funk, some fun sulphur playing around.
Finish: Short/Medium length. Goes quite soft here, losing power but still great mouthfeel. Quite a dry finish.
10yo from a White Wine Hogshead. Very interesting, very delicious. A shame about the short finish, really wanted it to be longer and more powerful.
81/100
 
Ardmore 1998 66.82 SMWS 57.5%
Colour: Dark Amber
Body: Full
Nose: A real fruit bomb and not exactly what I was expecting, loads of stewed plum, very sulphurous smoke in a good way, fruit salad, more meaty as it opens up, sour cherry, black cherry. Nice contrast of light and dark.
Taste: Very soft arrival, building this great sweetness, dry oak backed perfectly by fruit salad and fruit pastilles, oily, very little smoke actually, great development of flavour to this.
Finish: Medium length. More sulphurous here, struck match, brimstone and hellfire.
17yo from a Sherry Gorda. So damn good, these Gordas have a sulphurous reputation but this was a bit lighter and fresher than I was expecting.
85/100

Thanks for reading!

Scotch Review #784-#785
Whisky Network Review #929-#930

Network Average: 75.1
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 a 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.

Thursday, 25 July 2019

Ledaigathon: 1994 G&M, 20 Cadenhead's, SMWS 42.22 & 42.21, 2008 Archives Reviews

Hi everyone,

A while back, um, at the beginning of May, I was in Canada for work and was able to meet up with the wonderful people of the Toronto whisky society. What follows are reviews that are their fault.
Knowing that I loved Ledaig, they’d secured as many as they could and greeting me on the table were a row of them. Of course, I felt obliged to review them (Its a hard life sometimes), although I didn’t get to them all because I wanted to try other stuff too.
Thanks to everyone for an amazing night!

Ledaig 1994 Gordon & MacPhail 53.9%
Colour: Straw
Body: Medium
Nose: Ah yes, clearly not Ledaig just as we expected after the other 1994 G&M. Clean with ozone, salt, green apple and a little cheese, some seaweed, light on the complexity.
Taste: Soft then spicy, ginger and black pepper, salt coming in, dried seaweed, losing power into the finish.
Finish: Short length. Lacking power here, very soft salt, ill fitting dry oak. Doesn't really work.
Bottled 2012. Mislabelled Tobermory again. The second time I've had this from G&M which makes me distrust all early 90's Ledaig.
71/100
 
Ledaig 1997 Cadenhead's 52.8%
Colour: Gold
Body: Medium/Full
Nose: Lovely complexity of lemon, aged smoke, epically oily, buttery but also salt crusted sailing ropes, leather and a little green grape.
Taste: So so oily, salt and smoke building up, spicy black pepper, white pepper, great leather and chocolate coming in.
Finish: Long length. Power, white pepper, mineral smoke, a white wine thing going on which is cool.
Gold label, 20yo. Very similar to the 19yo that I have a bottle of, but I prefer that one by a point I think.
85/100
 
Ledaig 2006 42.22 SMWS 59.3%
Colour: Straw
Body: Full
Nose: Very clean nose, a little abv, pure salt and white pepper, lemon juice, not a huge amount there but very pure and clean.
Taste: Soft, then a great balance of pure salt and white pepper, lemon juice and stem ginger. Again, compelxity isn't massive but the balance and purity is super impressive.
Finish: Medium/Long length. Salty and spicy, stem ginger and white pepper.
9yo.
78/100
 
Ledaig 2006 42.21 SMWS 59.4%
Colour: Light Straw
Body: Medium/Full
Nose: Even cleaner and lighter... As in water. A tiny bit of green apple, a tiny bit of salt, Tequila.
Taste: Soft arrival, great saltiness, great balance again with the smoke, minerality, raw ginger and white pepper.
Finish: Medium length. Clean again, a little ginger and white pepper left.
I prefer the nose on this actually than the 42.22, but the taste isn't as good.
77/100
 
Ledaig 2008 Archives 60.9%
Colour: Gold
Body: Full
Nose: Dirty AF, burnt bacon, creamy vanilla, not a huge amount of smoke but a great balance, white german sausage, smoked sausage. Lots of sausage. Very savoury nose.
Taste: Clean arrival, great balance, salty, the Sherry comes through with dirty raisin, unami, bacon, so oily, mouthfeel for days.
Finish: Medium length. Creamy, sweet raisin and more overt peat.
Bottled 2016 I think, from a Sherry cask. Fan-fucking-tastic young Ledaig. Love it. Should have bought one when I had the chance.
84/100

Thanks for reading!

Scotch Reviews #779-#783
Whisky Network Reviews #924-#928

Network Average: 75.1
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 a 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.

Wednesday, 24 July 2019

Ledaig 12 Present Future & 19 PX Finish Reviews

Hi everyone,

Sorry for the lack of activity on my front, just being lazy I’m afraid. But today we are back with two awesome Ledaig’s. Yes, more Ledaig. I’ve got loads and I’m always trying more!
Both of these have used Sherry in the maturation, which we know works well with Ledaig but we have an indie and official. Let’s see how they compare…

Ledaig 12 Present Future The Whisky Exchange Show 58.4%
Colour: Amber
Body: Full
Nose: WAHH! That's what we love! Big dirty Ledaig. Red fruit and red meat, black pepper, beautifully balanced nose, complex and sexy. Fresh cherry and black cherry lifting the whole.
Taste: Full but with a soft arrival, red fruit, big spice, dirty, malt and black pepper, ash and soot, complex, cherry coming in. Oily for days.
Finish: Medium/Long length. Black pepper, red meat, really oily. Like REALLY! AMAZING.
Nose is the star here but its all great of course. For TWE Show's 10th anniversary. I think this is Signatory stock that whisky exchange have bought. I bought a bottle of this, which doesn’t happen often these days. Also… HOLOGRAM LABEL!
86/100
 
Ledaig 19 PX Finish 55.7%
Colour: Amber
Body: Full
Nose: Meaty, creamy, cherry, pomegranate, fragrant orange peel. Raw steak and green peppercorns. Not as complex as the full sherry matured stuff.
Taste: Dry start, mineral, pomegranate, Mezcal into the finish. Not nearly as sweet as I had expected.
Finish: Long length. More spices here, ginger, black pepper.
On the expensive side for Ledaig at £150. A little dry for my tastes although specs looked like exactly the whisky I love.
84/100

Thanks for reading!

Scotch Reviews #777-#778
Whisky Network Reviews #922-#923

Network Average: 75.1
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 a 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.

Friday, 5 July 2019

Carsebridge 1974 Exclusive Malts Review

Hi everyone,

Old single grains can be stunning. But unlike some people, I prefer them at around the 30 year mark, rather than 40. What we can agree on is that these grains do tend to age well over longer periods of time, giving them more complexity as long as the oak doesn’t take over too much.
Do I know much about the Carsebridge distillery. No, I don’t. I just remember that they closed in that terrible endgame year; 1983.

Carsebridge 1974 Exclusive Malts 42.3%
Colour: Gold
Body: Light
Nose: Kind of ghostly, old oak and light spirit, some fruit, some corn actually (apparently they used corn back then!), some carpenter's workshop and airing out old rooms...
Taste: Soft and very light start then fruit and oak, dry, some orange and lemon, slightly grassy, a little flat and tired in the mid-palate.
Finish: Short length. A little tropical fruit but a little flat here too.
Bottled at 44yo. Cool to try but quite over the hill IMO. The nose is nice and interesting but the palate lets it down. Not bad stuff, of course, just expected more.
71/100

Thanks for reading!

Scotch Review #776
Whisky Network Review #921

Network Average: 75.1
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 a 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.

Wednesday, 3 July 2019

Ben Nevis 8 Single Cask Nation & 19yo Highland Malt Chapter 7 Reviews

Hi everyone,
Got some Ben Nevis for y’all today.
I’ve heard rumours that the land lease is up on the land that Ben Nevis is built on, so maybe they’ll have to find somewhere else to get all those Japanese blended whiskies, eh? (So, apparently this rumour is bogus and the lease has another 30 years on it, which they are in negotiations at the moment)
Anyway, the stuff is normally very good, particularly from Sherry casks and I’ve got two of ‘em.


Ben Nevis 8 Single Cask Nation 64.8%
Colour: Amber
Body: Full
Nose: A meaty and thick style with a lot of power and some abv at first nosing, marzipan, almond, prune and walnut, malt and orange, a dusting of cinnamon.
Water: Better, more malt and ethereal fruit.
Taste: Thick and oily, really dense and well beyond its years, blackcurrant and prune, date, some fairly plain oak coming in towards the end.
Water: Loads softer, more malt, orange, heather but does still have that plain oak.
Finish: Long length. Quite dominated by this flat plain oak note, a little floral.
2009 from a Sherry cask. Really great arrival at full strength, love the power. The finish drags it back through.
76/100
 
Chapter 7 Undisclosed Highland 19 55.8%
Colour: Gold
Body: Medium/Full
Nose: Quite dense and oily, heavy malt, orange, chocolate, heather, there's a fresh mango lifting it up too, some vanilla.
Taste: Oily mouthfeel, nice orange, chocolate, malt and heather, some leather, green grape and soft lemon, more sour into the finish.
Finish: Long length. Lovely chocolate orange, some grape and lemon.
Two Sherry casks of Ben Nevis. A nice one but not overly impressive, especially for Ben Nevis.
75/100

Thanks for reading!

Scotch Reviews #774-#775
Whisky Network reviews #919-#920

Network Average: 75.1
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 a 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.

Friday, 28 June 2019

Balblair 12 & 15 Reviews

Hi everyone,

I am starting to believe that Inver House changed more than the packaging when they did their revamp of the Old Pulteney and Balblair ranges recently.
I’ve really liked the Balblair range I had tried so far, and I was a fan of the vintages, although I can understand why they would swap to age statements. Still, the stuff still has age statements and is still at 46%, so how bad could it be?
Well…

Balblair 12 46%
Colour: Light Gold
Body: Medium
Nose: Cheesy? What? Some spice, some oak, a little of that hessian character, dry nose, not hugely complex either. Very little of what I enjoyed about Balblair in the past…
Taste: More Balblair here thankfully, soft arrival, spicy and oaky actually, ginger, shortbread. Tastes older than 12 years with the amount of oak but, again, doesn’t have the complexity.
Finish: Medium/Long length. Kinda harsh, oak and spice, rubber?
Well below par from Balblair.
59/100

Balblair 15 46%
Colour: Light Amber
Body: Medium
Nose: Much better. Sherry, light raisin, honey, orange + peel, milky coffee, stewed cherries and a very light earthiness. Sweet nose.
Taste: Dry arrival with a little harsh spice up front then creamy with vanilla, dry oak then taking over, then more juicy, develops well. Raisin, chocolate, some hessian and bright cherry at the end.
Finish: Medium length. more cherry, some orange, fruity and juicy here.
I think this is a Sherry finish rather than fully matured. Much better than the 12, though I think I would still be disappointed if I was buying a bottle.
72/100

Thanks for reading!

Scotch reviews #772-#773
Whisky Network Reviews #917-#918

Network Average: 75.1
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 a 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.

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