logo

My Handcrafted Opinions on Whiskies, Distilleries and Other Related Stuff

Most Recent Whisky

Most Recent Whisky Review

Glenfiddich Fire and Cane

This release is part of the Glenfiddich Experimental series and bottled at 43% ABV (which is quite unusual from Glenfiddich).   It is a peated malt that is finished in rum casks, hence the Fire and Cane (as in sugarcane)  name.  The nose is smokey, but more camp fire rather than strong peat.  Fire before the Cane.  The taste is spicy and nutty, chocolate, pepper, brown sugar and some honey and a hint of the phenol from peat.  The finish is a little hot, like eating burnt cake batter off a wooden spoon.  Water brings up more brown sugar and some lemon peel.  Very nicely done but not sure I would pair peat and rum casks, personnally I prefer peat and sherry casks.

Read More
  • Sunday, 27 January 2013 17:31

    Old Friends and Jet Bags

    Written by

    I am writing this entry whilst in the middle of a long business trip. I am very fortunate because these trips always provide some opportunities to find and try new whiskies. This can take many forms including airline lounges, duty free shops, whisky shops and bars, hotel bars and even hotel mini bars (See my Cardhu review). It rare that I come home from a trip without making a new friend or two along the way and this trip, so far, is no different. I was delighted to find behind the bar of anonymous city center chain hotel a bottle of the recently reproduced Mackinlay’s Rare Old Highland Malt. Even better they were down to last dram and when he went to pour my double (50 ml to exact; don’t get me started in standard UK measure of 25 ml!) the barman rather than put back an almost empty bottle (I don’t think was a big seller for him) generously topped my glass up.  

    However I have to say such finds are becoming rarer for me now, it is getting harder to find whiskies that I haven’t tried and make these new liquid friends. So instead on this trip I took the time to reintroduce myself to some old friends; Glenfiddich 12 year old and Dalwhinnie 15 year old. I am glad I did. I have a real soft spot for Glenfiddich and have always felt it was overlooked and underrated in the whisky community. I know it isn’t trendy but, I tell you what, it is bloody good. If you don’t believe me PLEASE go back and try it again. As for the Dalwhinnie, I spent a lovely evening at the house of an old friend, in snowy Scotland catching up and doing severe damage to his only bottle of single malt. Context is of course everything, but at that moment, in that place, the Dalwhinnie was the perfect dram.

    Just before I left for this trip I found myself in the Container Store in Houston and spotted the JetBag™ in the photo. What I love about this bottle protector (apart from fact it pretty cheap at just $3.99) is that not only does it protect the bottle but it also contains an interior that will absorb the full 750 ml of fluid if bottle does break. Touch wood, I have never had a bottle break in my luggage but I can travel with a little more confidence because one day I know it will happen! So I guess that makes JetBag my first official www.somanywhiskies.com product endorsement. Right now, as I write this, it is protecting the bottle of Longmorn 16 year old I bought in Scotland, another one of the 101 World Whiskies To Try Before You Die and so I need to get on with posting that review (and the Mackinlay’s).

    Whiskies Tried...

    Total to Date: 660

    Distilleries

    Visited to Date: 58

    Follow Me on Twitter!

    Random Whisky

    Whisky Castle Edition Kaser

    There is a little story behind my acquisition of this very interesting bottle of single malt from a small Swiss distillery. I first learned of it in the book 101 World Whiskies to Try Before You Die. Unavailable in USA I found their website and attempted to order a bottle (or sample) online. As they only delivered in Europe I tried to get a bottle delivered to my father in the UK. However website was in German, no credit card details were requested or taken, no confirmation or follow up email was ever received (I think it went straight to Junk Mail) and so I put it out of my mind, assuming failure, and vowed to come up with another plan. That was August 2013. In January 2014 my father travelled to USA to visit me and in his bag was a bottle of Whisky Castle Edition Kaser. They had shipped it to UK and included an invoice with shipment. As I was not expecting the shipment and had not seen the invoice I had basically ignored their fine whisky (and their invoice) for over 4 months! I felt bad and can assure all readers that I have since dispatched payment along with an apology. The nose is quite rich and rather good with dark fruits, and a light yeasty, even cheesy note (Kaser = cheese). The taste is blast of spice and alcohol, citrus peel and cayenne pepper. Finish is spicy, malty and a touch of tobacco. Plenty going on and what it lacks in complexity and subtlety it makes up in overall flavor and overall punch!  I spent a little time trying to come up with a line about Swiss whisky, like Swiss cheese, being full of holes.... but it isn't.