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My Handcrafted Opinions on Whiskies, Distilleries and Other Related Stuff

Most Recent Whisky

Most Recent Whisky Review

Fortnum and Mason London Dry Gin

As the more observant reader will have noticed as this is a slight departure from my usual whisky reviews but as it is made by The London Distillery Company (of which I am shareholder and as at time of writing in September 2017 a Director) I feel it's place is warranted on my website.  (Note: Key words in that sentence are "my website").  This bottle came from Batch 022 and was bottled at 47.1% ABV.  The nose has some citrus peel, herbs, fresh cut fruit and vegetal notes and after while some alcohol starts to come through as well.   The mouthfeel is great, chewy and sticky with honey sweetness along with classic gin notes.  The finish has white ppeer and the alcohol dries the mouth quite quickly.   The addition of tonic water cuts the thickness and sweetness so this works really well in classic G&T format.

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  • Monday, 26 March 2012 13:28

    The Final Four: Help Required

    Written by

    Sports fans in the United States are currently enjoying the phenomena known as March Madness (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NCAA_Men%27s_Division_I_Basketball_Championship ).  This is the 68 best college basketball teams competing in a tournament, mostly held during the month of March, to be one of the four teams who compete in the final weekend (or the Final Four as it is known) for the National Championship.    I also have my own final four, the four whiskies I have to yet to track down either a dram in a bar or a bottle somewhere in my search for all “101 Whiskies To Try Before You Die” (http://www.somanywhiskies.com/101-whiskies-to-try-before-you-die) .  While I am yet to post all 97 reviews, I have posted 85, I have a few more I have found (or even bought but I am yet to develop notes for) and I do have a plan to acquire or taste the others soon, but these final four elude me. 

    So I have decided to put out a request for help.  Any ideas where I can acquire a dram or bottle of these  whiskies (in person or online) would be appreciated and if you have a bottle perhaps an exchange of samples or a small donation in kind could be made?  If you have any contacts or know of any other whisky fanatic please feel free to pass this request on.

    Hibiki 30 year old

    Glen Breton Rare (lives up to the name in USA anyway)

    Highland Park 21 year old (seems to be very limited re-release and only in the UK)

    Hakushu 18 year old

    Just these four whiskies lie between and my goal of reviewing all 101 whiskies from the book 101 Whiskies To Try Before You Die.  If you can help please leave a comment or suggestion, email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or via twitter @somanywhiskies.

     

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    Random Whisky

    Balcones True Blue Cask Strength

    What better way could there be to celebrate my blog posting in August 2017 regarding cask strength whisky than to review one. So I did and regular readers (if such an animal exists) will know I have some strong opinions on Balcones and their products ranging from “great” to “get over yourself” and pretty much everything in between. I found this 61.4% ABV bottling of a 100% blue corn recipe to have a nose of caramel, sawdust, banana, vanilla and of course alcohol but in the nose at least the alcohol, while clearly present, did not overpower the elements. The taste was sharp and stringent, sweet with buttery corn but quickly lost in the heat. The finish was pure Johnny Cash whisky, because it just “burns burns burns”. With water it gets a little smoother drinkable and develops some oak and black tea notes. I noted that I may have added too much water but that is my problem with cask strength whisky; I don’t like to “guess” the right amount of water to make something more drinkable and after stripping the inside of my mouth of all living skin cells my palate was beaten into submission anyway.  As I have said Balcomes has the ability to produce great products but this is average at best and once again goes to show that classic recipes and grains (and ABVs) become classics for a reason, and that is they work.  This is average at best.