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My Handcrafted Opinions on Whiskies, Distilleries and Other Related Stuff

Most Recent Whisky

Most Recent Whisky Review

Elijah Craig Small Batch

This "no age statement" expression replaced the 12 year old Elijah Craig in 2016.  The nose has vanilla, popcorn and toasted oak.  Oily and peppery on palate, a little honey but not as sweet as nose suggests. Not as balanced as I would like but a little water helped and brought up some caramel sweetness and apple tartness.

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  • Am I the only person more than a little surprised by the recent Whisky Advocate article on summer cocktails?   I was really excited about finding new ways to drink whisky during the incredibly long and hot summers we "enjoy" in Texas because I was seriously considering taking my summer drinking business back to simple, cold beer.   Dave Broom did contribute a very nice piece on ice, water and soda with whisky and I will certainly try some of his recommendations, but the piece I was really anticipating on whisky summer cocktails was frustrating to put it mildly.  I am guessing the average whisky enthusiast has a well-stocked bar and could rustle up most common cocktail ingredients and even find a bottle of Angostura bitters in the back of cupboard somewhere.  However there was not one cocktail in the nine recipes offered I could make that did not require a visit to a specialty store to acquire a spirit, liqueur or mixer so obscure that when typed into Google would simply generate "?" as a reply.  In addition all the recipes required me to formulate some syrup or other "pre-drink" concoction (Rosemary-chamomile syrup or fresh peach juice anyone?) before I could even begin to assemble the actual cocktail.

     

    The list of ingredients included the following:

    Mathidle Peche liqueur

    Lapsang Souchong tea syrup

    Aperol

    Fruitlab Hibiscus liqueur

    Bitter Truth aromatic bitters

    Rocky Mountain peach whiskey

    Rosemary-chamomile syrup

    My whisky budget is strained to beyond its intended breaking point and I can't be alone in refusing to buy a bottle of hibiscus liqueur even if I could find it in Texas , which I doubt, and if I did I would probably become the target of an state government observation program.  The subscribers and readers of Whisky Advocate are, I suspect, like me.  They are whisky drinkers not mixologists  and  I am guessing the numbers of actual subscribers who have actually made one of recipes in the magazine would be far less than 1% on a good day.   Was that really your intent?

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    Random Whisky

    Talisker 59’ North

    This “ageless” expression from Talisker is bottled at 57% ABV. The nose is classic sea spray and salty aromas. Some peat and sweet caramel in the background. The taste is stringent with alcohol at first, then toffee and peat. High intensity and very flavorful, some fruity notes also appear with time. In the finish the alcohol dries and the smoke lingers along with toffee on the palate. With water it gets a little smoother and definitely fruitier, even orange marmalade. Wood starts to come through in finish as well but I suspect this is a younger dram and spirit led rather than cask, but I think there may be some sherry casks in this expression.