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My Handcrafted Opinions on Whiskies, Distilleries and Other Related Stuff

Most Recent Whisky

Most Recent Whisky Review

The Glenlivet Caribbean Reserve

I always find myself so drawn to rum influenced whisky that there is a part of me that thinks maybe I should just drink rum? Anyway this no age statement variation on the theme is bottled at 40% ABV and pretty good value at under $40 in bottle (in Texas anyway). The nose is sweet and fruity with perhaps the tell-tale Glenlivet pineapple notes lurking in the background. The taste starts sweet as well with toffee and brown sugars and I found quite oily. I don’t get fresh fruits but more candy fruit flavors, like Starburst or boiled sweets. The finish balances out the sweetness with bitter citrus oil and peel, essential oils and woody tannins. A little water turns the oily mouthfeel into something more creamy and brings out some banana notes. Really good value.

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  • Simon Seaton

    Simon Seaton

    Monday, 23 July 2018 18:01

    Red River

    This is a Texas bourbon finished in Pinot Noir red wine casks at the Western Son distillery in Pilot Point Texas.  If you haven't heard of Pilot Point, dont worry about it,  neither had I and I have lived and / or worked in Texas for over quarter of a century!  The nose has some red berry fruits and sweet port wine along with the usual suspects of corn and sawdust.  The taste is smooth on palate with some oak, brown sugar and cola.  The finish has white pepper, green oak and ends with drying wine notes.  It's good... but for me this 42.1% ABV expression misses the fruit from the nose in the taste and finish that would help balance out the bitter / oaky notes of the finish.

    Monday, 23 July 2018 17:56

    Manhattan Project: Experiment #43

    Location: Bottled barrel-aged Manhattan at 34% ABV

    Date: July 2018

    Price: Approx. $40.00 USD a bottle (or +/- $5 a 3 oz measure)

    Recipe: Described as Manhattan but a little reseach indicates it is a "Perfect" recipe with both dry and sweet vermouth

    Garnish: None

    Served: Rocks

    Comments:  Acceptable and at a good price point but I am not a fan of perfect Manhattans and usually prefer the sweeter versions.

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

    Monday, 23 July 2018 17:50

    Manhattan Project: Experiment #42

    Location: Black Hat Whiskey Room, Terminal E, Houston Intercontintal Airport

    Date: July 2018

    Price: 2220 United Airmiles (or $14.00 USD)

    Recipe: Same online system as #41 but this time with Knob Creek and I paid with United Airmiles.... cool.

    Garnish: Black Cherry

    Served: Up

    Comments:  Same as experiment #41, overall good but lacked bitters

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

    Monday, 23 July 2018 17:45

    Manhattan Project: Experiment #41

    Location: Texas Barbeque Q Smokehouse, Terminal E,Houston Intercontinental Airport

    Date: July 2018

    Price: $15.00 USD

    Recipe: Makers Mark, sweet vermouth and a few dashes of Angosturo bitters

    Garnish: Black Cherry

    Served: Up

    Comments:  Cool online ordering system and a good Manhattn, lacked some bitters for me.

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

    Monday, 28 May 2018 10:48

    Manhattan Project: Experiment #40

    Location: Pearson International Airport, Terminal 1, Toronto

    Date: May 2018

    Price: $10.50 CAD ($8.08 USD)

    Recipe: Described as "Rye whiskey balanced out with sweet vermouth and a few dashes of Angosturo bitters"

    Garnish: Cherry

    Served: Up

    Comments:  A very solid offering at a great price made with Crown Royal (*what else in Canada)

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

    Monday, 28 May 2018 08:28

    Mt. Logan 20 year old

    I don't recall seeing very many 15 - 20 year old Canadian whiskies so I was intrigued when I saw the 20 and 15 year old expressions of Mt Logan in the Liquor Depot in Alberta on a recent business trip.  The Mt. Logan brand is exclusive to the Liquor Depot retailer and the juice is made at the Highwood Distillery in Alberta and bottled as Canadian Rye whisky at 40% ABV.  The nose is sweet with vanilla, Werthers Candy and lemon peel.  The taste is very smooth and creamy with coffee, cocoa powder, butterscotch, vanilla toffee and Scottish tablet.  The finish shows some sign of 20 years in a cask with pepper and oak notes and black tea.  A little water thins out the creamy mouthfeel and the sweetness goes down (which some might find more balanced) but overall I would avoid water with this as it doesn't handle it very well, for my palate anyway, and would be easy to over dilute.  Of the two expressions of Mt. Logan Canadian Rye that I tried (15 year old and 20 year old) I preferred the 20 years old (neat) but both were good.

    Monday, 28 May 2018 08:22

    Mt. Logan 15 year old

    There was a little debate as to how to classify this as it is described as 40% ABV Canadian Rye whisky on the label but probably has a higher corn than rye content, and one online source suggested it was 100% corn.  The nose is fruity, baked apple crumble with vanilla custard and some lemon.  The taste  is sweet, with candied fruits, milk chocolate biscuits and balnced out with lemon peel.  The finish is also sweet and lingers with some pepper spice and charred oak notes.  A little brought up more milk chocolate and less grainy biscuit note.  I liked this one but prefered the Mt Logan 20 year old.

    Tuesday, 08 May 2018 10:44

    Kilchoman Sanaig

    I am a big fan of sherry cask aged and finished Islay whisky (Bowmore 15 The Darkest is still all time Top 10 for me) and so I was looking forward to this 46% ABV no age statement expression from Islay's youngest distillery (but not for much longer!). The nose is classic "bonfire on the beach" with some cooked fruits as well.  The taste is very sweet with caramel, vanilla toffee, green apples and of course some peat which then goes on to dominate the finish while some tannin Sherry notes also push through drying the mouthfeel.  With water the sweetness turns to brown sugar and the peat turns more smokey; hot and peppery on the palate.  It is good but the sherry feels held  back rather than forward on this one.

    Tuesday, 08 May 2018 10:37

    Spey River Sherry Cask Finish

    The label offers no clues as to the provenance of this bottling (other than Spey River) but that still leaves a lot of options for the distillery.  The nose has a familar, vegetal, even stale, farmyard malty note plus some dried fruits.  Reading my notes it is better than I probably made it sound.  The taste has lemon peel, pepper, cloves and oil.  Smooth and strongly flavoured btu not as balanced and integrated as I would like. The finish has more spice, including chilli, but quite short.  Wiuth water gets a little creamier and sweeter with marshmallow and more spice notes.  Overall a bit of a mixed bag, nothing "wrong" with it but doesn't quite come together for me.

    Since I moved from Texas in 2015 the one whisky I miss the most and find the hardest to source from other side of the world is Forty Creek.  It is very special and unique and honestly I miss it more than my family. If they are reading, then that is a joke.  But I do miss it a lot.  I picked up this while passing though Texas on business and my bottle was number 9132 from Lot 11 (... you are welcome whiskey pedants).   The nose has lots of familiar notes of vanilla and freshly sawn wood.  Quite mild and sweet like those cheap cigars that are sold in US Drugstores. The taste is also sweet, with caramel, chocolate, butterscotch balanced with some grass and pepper notes.  The finish does manage to muster a little spice and oaky resistance but still overall a typical Forty Creek "candy disguised as whiskey" (that I love).  Perhaps not their finest work... but to honest even their "OK stuff" is better than most.

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    Longrow CV

    The nose has lots of peat and is quite phenolic with an Islay seaweedy note and a hint of yeast.    The taste has lots of peaty tingle and spice, vanilla, sweet coconut and even some new make spirit notes.  The finish has more peat and spiciness.  If you like peated whisky this check all the boxes.  However both the nose and taste suggest there is some young spirit hiding behind all the peat.