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My Handcrafted Opinions on Whiskies, Distilleries and Other Related Stuff

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Grangestone Sherry Cask Finish

The third expression in this series is, like the other two, bottled at 40% ABV.  The nose has lots of dried fruits, prunes, raisins, digestive biscuits and a slight farmyuard, vegatal funkiness.   The taste is more dried fruit, prunes, bitter dark chocolate and citrus peel.  The mouthfeel is quite creamy, chewy and even oily.  The finish is spicy with fresh cut jalepenos and black pepper.  Not massively complex... consider if Macallan had an off day.  However Macallan's bad days are still better than many distilleries good days.

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  • Sunday, 05 April 2020 17:32

    The Manhattan Project II - Update

    Written by

    My original idea for this blog project was to try 101 Manhattans (any similarity to 101 Whiskies To Try Before You Die is purely coincidental) from the various hotels, bars and restaurants around the world that my work took me too. The basic idea was that #101 would be the Manhattan finest I could make after all that research. Confined to home in April 2020 I thought I would make Experiment #50 my “best so far” and I have to say it was very good. The recipe I used was as follows:

    As I can’t seem to decide if I prefer Rye or Bourbon I went with Wild Turley Forgiven (which is a Bourbon / Rye blend), 1.5 oz and has enough alcohol at 45% ABV to push through the sweetness. Next were a couple of classic of ingredients, 1 oz Dolin Sweet Vermouth and a good dash of Angostura bitters. The now not-so-secret ingredient, courtesy of Mike Raymond at Reserve 101, is Luxardo Cherry liqueur (1 oz) which adds the classic cherry note and that lets me experiment with the garnish. I went with bitter note from a strip of lemon peel (that I scorched with cigar lighter to release the oils – a trick I saw at the Oak Room in Buenos Aires) to bring balance to the sweet liqueur. Shaken together and served on the rocks it was pretty good even if I say so myself.

    Manhattan 101 is going to be even better…

    What is this about? Check out  http://www.somanywhiskies.com/item/749-the-manhattan-project-ii

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    Random Whisky

    Very Old Barton

    I first tried this when I toured the Barton 1792 distillery and was very impressed.  I was even more impressed when I saw it retailed for under $15 a bottle.  I think the name needs a little work however ... Very Old in this case means aged for 6 years.  Still in bourbon years that is not young, but it's not very old either.  The nose shows some signs of age, a little vanilla and corn but not big or bold.  However the tell tale acetone note of young whisky not present so sometimes it is what you don't smell that is interesting. The taste is also integrated and sweet with caramel and some fruit and molasses (almost rum like).  The finish has a nice bite of oak spice and rye to balance the sweet, by no means a grand finale, more of a fond farewell.  I like it, it has some imperfections, but that just adds to the charm.  Perhaps a more appropriate name might be Very Good Barton.