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My Handcrafted Opinions on Whiskies, Distilleries and Other Related Stuff

Most Recent Whisky

Most Recent Whisky Review

Jameson Black Barrel

The name of this 40% expression comes from heavily charred oak barrels used in the process.   The nose is fruity and sweet, with toasted pineapple and vanilla.  The mouth feel is very smooth and sweet with notes of butterscotch, floral honey, vanilla custard and toasted nut notes.    The finish has some chilli peppers and bitter lemon peel and dries out.  With some water it thins out and mouthfeel gets a little less creamy.   Lots of classic bourbon and oak notes which is what they were going for.

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  • Simon Seaton

    Simon Seaton

    Wednesday, 25 March 2020 17:14

    Kilbrin

    It appears to be Total Wines and More in-house Irish brand, bottled at 40% abv but with no indication of provenance.   It must be special because it says “handcrafted” on the label as opposed to the usual stuff made by Irish Cyborg-Robot distillers. The nose is floral and light, some fruit and hints of oak. The taste is creamy and smooth with toffee, vanilla and even hints of peach. The finish gets spicier with some heat, chilli and tobacco. With a little water there is a sweet Juicy Fruit gum note as well.

    Overall a nicely balanced – spicier than your average – Irish whiskey.

    Sunday, 22 March 2020 13:56

    Manhattan Project: Experiment #49

    Location: Georgia James, Houston, TX

    Date: March 2020

    Price: $11.00 USD (22 x 2)

    Recipe: Menu says "Rye whiskey, sweet vermouth, angostura"

    Garnish: None

    Served: Rocks

    Comments: First "to go" Manhattan under relaxed TX laws due to COVID 19 was great one

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

    Saturday, 21 March 2020 20:07

    Wild Turkey Forgiven

    According to most sources… an accident. The story goes that Wild Turkey mistakenly blended small batch bourbon with high proof rye whiskey. Bottled at 45.5% ABV and this bottle came from Batch 303. The nose has a nutty, corn sweetness and grassy herbal notes. The taste is corn, sawdust and caramel. Very chewy, complex and good. Rye spice and cinnamon notes begin to push through and stay in the slightly hot finish along with peppermint.

    It tastes exactly like you might expect a bourbon and rye blend to taste. Funny that. Must try in a Manhattan.

    Saturday, 21 March 2020 19:58

    Bowmore 15 year old

    Avid readers of my blog (that means me, and to be honest I don’t even read this shit) will know that I loved the Bowmore 15 year Darkest expression and it often made my “must have” list. This is the replacement and bottled at same ABV%. The nose is sweet and malty with lemon peel. The taste is dried fruit cake, black treacle, chilli dark chocolate and sherry. The finish has black pepper, a light smokiness and damp oak wood. With water some more sugary notes and lemon marmalade.

    Still a very good example of smoke and sherry – maybe nostalgia - but I think I preferred the Darkest.

    Saturday, 21 March 2020 19:51

    Skrewball Peanut Butter Whiskey

    At 35% ABV and sweeter than your grandmother (not mine, yours) this is a liqueur and not a whiskey but is getting some traction in market the way Fireball did. The nose has ballpark crackerjacks, cough syrup, the inside of a candy store. The taste is sweet with more syrup and marshmallow notes. The peanut butter shows up a bit late but strong in finish along with barley sugar and finally some grainy alcohol notes.

    This is not whiskey. You may like it.

    Saturday, 21 March 2020 19:41

    Glenmorangie Bacalta

    In a distant galaxy, long long ago I wrote about Madeira finished Glenmorganie and it has become a unicorn whisky for me.  So I was delighted to see this release of a Malmsey Madeira cask finished Private Edition release at 46% ABV.

    The nose is sweet with raisins, fresh cut grass and citrus. The taste is brown sugar, maple syrup, plums. Milk chocolate and some spice that continues into finish with stewed black tea, ginger and oak. With water it becomes a little smoother and sweeter, even creamy. Overall this is complex, sweet, rich and a little bit awesome.

    In all honesty probably not a Unicorn, but definately a donkey with a horn on its head.  You would pay to see that right? Of course you would.

    Wednesday, 18 March 2020 18:49

    There's Life in the Old Blog Yet

    Like so many people around the world I am stuck in the house and working from home for at least 4 weeks (and probably more) so I am going to take this opportunity to catch up on my long neglected blog and post some whisky notes and reviews over the next month.  I tried to write a few tasting notes last night as a warm up and was shocked how out of shape my "tasting muscles" have become.  My notes looked as barren and empty as the toilet paper shelves in my local supermarket.  Much work to be done....

    Sunday, 15 March 2020 23:38

    Manhattan Project: Experiment #48

    Location: Oyster Bar, NY, NY

    Date: March 2020

    Price: $14.00 USD

    Recipe: Makers Mark, Sweet Vermouth, Angostora Bitters

    Garnish: 1 orange peel

    Served: Rocks

    Comments: Classic components to make excellent Manhattan in Manhattan at reasonable price

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

    Sunday, 15 March 2020 23:29

    Manhattan Project: Experiment #47

    Location: Le Bernadin, NY, NY

    Date: March 2020

    Price: $21.00 USD

    Recipe: Michter's Rye, Montanaro Dry Vermouth, Amaro Averna, Bendictine, Angostora Bitters

    Garnish: 1 black cherry

    Served: Up

    Comments: Complex and expensive but not sure about the Dry Vermouth, lacked sweetness.

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

    Monday, 28 October 2019 19:19

    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.

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    Random Whisky

    Russell's Reserve Rye 6 year old

    I first tried this at the Wild Turkey distillery and was impressed.  Very similar in style (and age) to one of my favorite whiskies, Sazerac Rye.  The nose is very complex some wood and spirit notes.  I recently heard someone describe a rye whisky nose like a building site with the smell of wood and fresh paint and this one has that same quality.  With time I also got a baked bread note.  The taste is floral and slightly perfumed, like turkish delight or rose water.  Smooth and sweet at first and then dries out.  The finish is classic rye, herbal, minty and even menthol.