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My Handcrafted Opinions on Whiskies, Distilleries and Other Related Stuff

Most Recent Whisky

Most Recent Whisky Review

Mortlach 12 year old

The nose on 43.4% expression is very floral with some wheaty breakfast biscuits and spicy notes.  The taste is very smooth with baked spiced apples (maybe even slightly burnt) caramel and honey.  The finish has some slow building heat along with some Bovril (salty / meaty) notes.  Reminded me of good Texas barbeque brisket with strong spice bark.  Overall a ittle too much burnt, salty and bitter notes with not enough sweetness to balance it for me. 

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  • Simon Seaton

    Simon Seaton

    Monday, 24 June 2019 17:46

    Bushmills Port Cask

    This is the third expression in the Bushmills Steamship Collection travel retail series and the most expensive.  There is lots of red fruits and wine in the nose.  The mouthfeel is smooth and the taste has dates, digestive biscuits, red grape skins, cinnamon and a little oak which carries into the finish.  With water it gets much sweeter and even smoother with an almost glassy mouthfeel and toffee.  Even at 40% ABV this needs a little water.   A very smooth, easy drinking Irish whiskey and maybe the first in this series I might order instead of my go to Bushmills product Black Bush (....unless I am paying).

    Monday, 29 April 2019 03:29

    Out of the Whisky Wilderness

    I am very happy to announce that I will returning to Houston Texas this summer after almost 4 years working overseas.   Most of that time has been spent in Dubai which has not been a great place to blog about whisky but once I am back in Texas I hope to refresh the website (which is well overdue) and promise to try and post more regular blogs and whisky reviews that everyone out there can then just ignore much more frequently.  In summary, everything will be just like it was before....

    Monday, 29 April 2019 03:10

    Bushmills #3 Char Bourbon Cask

    I always question "bourbon cask" finished as a feature of any whisky as most Scotch and Irish is matured in Bourbon casks.  It is like saying a "metal car" or a "terrible Brexit plan"; it's a  bit redundant.  Bushmills have highlghted the #3 char of oak casks used (meaning a few seconds less exposure to fire than the more common #4) as the USP of this expression.  The nose is malty with banana, vanilla and milk chocolate.  The taste also has malt and nuts, lemon citrus peel and sweet peanut brittle.  The finish is initially sugar coating on tongue with a spicy note of cinnamon and tamale hots candy at the end.  At end of the day it is another bourbon cask finished whisky and there is not much here that stands out so if you are in mood for no-age expression Bushmills (and why not) I would probably recommend Black Bush over this one.

     

    Saturday, 12 January 2019 09:06

    Seaton's Law of Whisky Investing Update

    Not long after I wrote the blog a few weeks ago the news was full, as I once predicted, of news around fake whisky (so actual fake news).  An example story from BBC is below but in summary twenty-one out of fifty five bottles of rare Scotch were proven to be outright fakes.  In short I felt this required me to update my prior blog to include my new, Fourth Law of Whisky Invesment as follows:

    Law 1 Investing: Allocate for investment in Whisky exactly the same amount of money you would be willing throw onto a fire and watch burn

    Law 2 Buying: If you are reading on the internet or in a magazine about a great investment, then it isn't.  Law 3 now applies.

    Law 3 Selling: Appear in a series of magazine articles and internet postings about how great whisky investing is.  Then sell your shit.

    Law 4 Owning: The "rare" whisky you own is quite possibly a fake and worthless.  For that reason do not under any circumtances allow it to be checked.  Law 3 still applies.

    https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-scotland-business-46566703

     

    Saturday, 12 January 2019 09:02

    London Distillery LV 1767 Edition

    Note: This was first attempt to limit my increasingly rare tasting notes to 280 characters so I can also tweet full review rather than link for all my millenial readers....

    London Distillery LV 1767 Edition

    54.3% ABV, 100% Rye and aged for 1400 days

    Nose: Black cherry, plum, Cadbury Fruit and Nut with biscuit

    Taste: Sweet, chocolate, coffee and more fruit

    Finish: Peppermint and oak bitterness. Slight grain note indicative of youth

    Saturday, 12 January 2019 08:38

    Manhattan Project: Experiment #45

    Location: Xian Bar, Bossa Nova Mall, Rio De Janeiro, Brazil

    Date: December 2018

    Price: 80 rials ($21.53 USD)

    Recipe: Requested Makers Mark

    Garnish: Cherry

    Served: Up

    Comments: For this price it had to be good... and it was.  Much better than previous visit to Rio (Experiment #27)

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

    Saturday, 12 January 2019 08:34

    Manhattan Project: Experiment #44

    Location: The Chart Room, QE2, Dubai, UAE

    Date: December 2018

    Price: 75 AED  ($20.42 USD)

    Recipe: Described as Bourbon whisky (no e) and Martini Rosso

    Garnish: Cherry

    Served: Up

    Comments: As you might expect for the iconic QE2 it was excellent, balanced sweet and woody but perhaps missed the bitters

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

    Tuesday, 28 August 2018 05:29

    Maker's Mark Private Select

    This was picked by Mike Raymond of Houston's Reserve 101 as their 10th anniversary bottling. As the regular readers (both of them) know by now I love Maker's Mark, I love Houston, I love Reserve101 and I have very strong feelings for Mike.  But for some reason this one did not quite work for me, but give it a try as it might for you.   The nose is oaky with some fruity wine notes as well.  Some heat from the 55.65% ABV along with classic vanilla, corn and cola notes.  The taste is hot and a little sharp at first with some black cherry, dark chocolate, jalepeno, burnt caramel and oak char.  The finish is pepper and even a little sour.  With water it gets creamier with some brown sugar and more vanilla. It definately needs a little water (or ice or time) to open it up.

    Tuesday, 28 August 2018 05:19

    Balvenie Triple Cask 12 year old

    To be honest this name slightly annoys me and I was expecting that to influence how I liked / disliked the liquid but the truth is that this 40% abv travel expression was good enough to overcome this obstacle.  The name refers to first fill bourbon casks, sherry casks and what the label describes as "traditional whisky casks" which means I assume re-used bourbon or sherry casks.  So to call this a "triple cask' is sort of like saying Brexit is "the will of the people" when less than 50% of the country actually voted to Leave.  The nose is fruity with green apples and polished wood.  The taste has toffee sweetness, vanilla, barley sugar, marmalade and hints of oak that build into a bitter sweet but balanced finish.  Drink neat as water does nothing for this, it just gets thin in mouth feel.  Still don't like the name but a great product.

    Wednesday, 15 August 2018 06:49

    Seaton's Laws of Whisky Investing

    Although the image I chose for this blog is of Einsten I don't try to pretend that this is rocket science.  In fact I think Whisky investing is really so simple that I have summarized it in my Three Laws of Whisky Investing below. I can condense this further in just two words and in any future publication on the subject I would suggest they take their cue from The Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy and print on the cover, in large friendly letters, the same two words:  "Don't Bother".

    Law 1 Investing: Allocate for investment in Whisky exactly the same amount of money you would be willing throw onto a fire and watch burn

    Law 2 Buying: If you are reading on the internet or in a magazine about a great investment, then it isn't.  Law 3 now applies.

    Law 3 Selling: Appear in a series of magazine articles and internet postings about how great whisky investing is.  Then sell your shit.

    Whiskies Tried...

    Total to Date: 692

    Distilleries

    Visited to Date: 66

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    Random Whisky

    Ballechin #4 The Oloroso Sherry Casks

    Unusual highland whisky from the Edradour distillery, heavily peated at 50 ppm phenol. The color is rich due to the maturation in sherry casks.  The nose is peaty.  That's about all I could get from the nose.   The taste is peaty as well, very powerful and at 46% ABV its mouth coating and full bodied.  Did I mention the peat?  Interestingly it doesn't have quite the same the medicinal qualities found in the many of the heavily peated Islay or maritime whiskies.  With a little water is possible to get past the peat and a few sweet notes can be detected like marshmallow, brown sugar and the sherry from the cask is also there.  But to paraphrase the Fast Show "mostly I have been drinking peat". The good news is if you like peat, you will love this.