Please refer to the press release below and best of luck to you!!
Discover A Rare Find!
Shielded from the world’s prying eyes deep in the Highlands of Scotland, quietly producing small, precious batches of Single Malt Whisky, Glen Garioch is a Rare Find indeed.
Now, we want to share this little hidden gem in Scotland’s northeast with one lucky winner!
We’re offering Glen Garioch enthusiasts the chance to experience Rare Finds across Aberdeenshire: a two day, all expenses paid trip to the Garioch, The Granary of Aberdeenshire.
On a VIP tour of our Glen Garioch distillery, our lucky winner will discover the time-honoured skills at work and hear from the master craftsmen involved.
After a private tasting held by our Master Blender, Rachel Barrie, the lucky winner will rest their head at Meldrum House: a luxury four star hotel situated in the beautiful countryside surrounding the market town of Oldmeldrum, the home of Glen Garioch.
The next morning, you’ll venture out into the wild to discover Rare Finds of the northeast. Guided by local experts, our winner will experience salmon fishing and gold panning at secret locations precious few will ever see.
Competition runners up will also receive their very own Rare Find: a special, Limited Edition Small Batch release of Glen Garioch Single Malt Whisky.
I could start off this post by exclaiming: “The British are coming! The British are coming!”
Or worse (and this would be really bad), I could wax on about the British Invasion and make references to Herman’s Hermits dramlaxing with ‘Enry the Eighth or The Kinks rocking out with The Village Dram Preservation Society or The Beatles Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Heart Club Dram…
Heck, if I wanted to I could post this Monty Python bit about Kamikaze Scotsman… if I wanted to:
However, I’m not going to do any of that. Wouldn’t even consider it!
There is a lot to cover in this post so I am going straight to the two whisky reviews.
Both whiskies are bottled at 46% ABV and non-chill filtered and can be found for around $69/bottle here in the USA.
Note that these bottlings are USA specific and have a slightly different make-up as compared to the UK or EU versions. These whiskies have both been matured in both new oak and ex-bourbon casks. The new wood cask usage is specific to the US market.
English Whisky Company “Classic” non-peated – 46% ABV
On the nose – A slightly pungent start on the nose however it’s balanced quite nicely with hints of pear drops and a slight spicy/spiced edge.
Damp dish towels are in here but it’s also bit like a banana split with, well, bananas, vanilla bean ice cream, the smell of nitrous from the whipped cream dispensing bottle and slight, distant notes of salted almond. A vegetal quality as well that reminds me of milk thistle.
On the mouth – Ab-fab mouthfeel. Attention whisky producers – this is the oily mouthfeel you want to target for your bottlings. For realz.
The spicy element really comes through. It’s a most welcome element that creates a nice frame for the fine and malty backbone. Some light fruits in here as well as hints of wild flowers. This is a really delicate and soft whisky.
Finish – A nice long and drying finish.
In sum – This whisky is nice, delicate and understated. However, there’s a spicy edge to it that is so very interesting…. Oddly enough, I see myself bundling up by a fire and drinking this one. So, I’d say this is a fine winter-time dram.
English Whisky Company Peated – 46% ABV
On the nose – Soft peat and again, floral, like I got with on the “Classic” version. An absolute joy that is somewhat reminiscent of the Octomore Comus when I nose it. Salty and oh, so biscuity on the nose. Anise seed or black licorice and touches of plums.
After a few minutes, the spice really shines through.
On the mouth – A nice mouthfeel but not as oily as the sample of the “Classic” I have. Very malty and salty with a good deal of smoke at the back of the tongue. Salty, spicy, subtle fruits and more flowers for you.
Amazing that behind all of the spice, salt and malt that the delicate character of the spirit shines through.
Finish– Soft, drying and hints of chocolate and chicory (unexpected).
In sum – If I had my choice, as nice as the peated is, the “Classic” is so well done that I’d reach for that. Actually, I’d reach for it anytime now that I think about it (and have a sip of it again). Dare I say, the “Classic” is an everyday dram? Yes, yes it is. Yum!
Special thanks to RS and Purple Valley Imports for the official samples!
In short, there have been 48 different Clan minis released into the US market and our friends over at ImpEx were kind enough to send me three minis. All from a different clan.
Thanks to ImpEx, SF and EK for the samples!
Being a New Englander and basically growing up knowing this and that person who knew or was related in some way to the Kennedy family (as in JFK, RFK and Teddy of the famous Chappaquiddick incident) and having a life-long crush on Jackie Kennedy Onnassis… I decided to open the Kennedy mini.
Note: all of the minis contain the same juice, I just wanted to drink a Kennedy under the table.
Here are my notes:
On the nose – Young yet pleasant. I know it says single malt but it almost has the vibrancy of a nicer high-malt-content blended Scotch whisky; orange creamsicle, pears, sherbet and the slightest hint of smoke. (The smoke could be my imagination playing tricks on me.)
A bit of pineapple cake in here as well and then some sugary angel food cake. This is quite the dessert-like dram so far.
All this fruit makes me think of Balblair a bit, to be honest.
On the mouth – As to be expected with 40% ABV, there’s very little attack upon entry which is just fine for the newbie whisky drinker as it’s quite fruity and very approachable (no burn).
That touch of smoke returns, yet the fruit doesn’t go away. But now there’s something sour in here that I can’t quite place my finger on. Not offensive, just sour-like.
Oat cakes lead us in to the finish…
Finish – Shortish finish with slight pepper and that sour element I caught on the palate.
In sum – While this is not really a “sit and ponder” sort of whisky, it holds it’s own well enough.
All I can picture is 200 Kennedys at a wedding or something like that and toasting to the husband and bride.
Kilchoman 4yo – first fill bourbon barrel, Single Cask, Cask Strength
Laphroaig 6yo – refill bourbon hogshead, Single Cask, Cask Strength
Details on the events (click the image to view/download a PDF of the event flyer):
Date:Sunday, June 30th Time:6:30pm – 9:30pm Address:1101 Camino Real, Redondo Beach, CA Modest cost for the event:$40 Contact for tickets:Lee Zaro or Aaron Krouse, firstname.lastname@example.org What else comes with the tasting event other than fantastic Scotch whisky from Single Cask Nation:Hors d’oeuvres, fun, education, raffles for Single Cask Nation membership (and more). Not party hats, sorry.
Special thanks to LZ and AK for setting up this great event and thanks, too, to Temple Menorah for having us!
I am about to lose my Glenlivet reviewing virginity.
I don’t know if I’m ready or what it will do to my relationship with The Glenlivet after we do it I review this whisky. I just know that I really-really like the Exclusive Malts range and, I think I’m ready to commit. I’m ready to take this shapely glass into my hands and…
You know, as I typed the above ridiculousness, I realize that it (and by extension I) is no where near as funny an innuendo as Baptize Me from the Book of Mormon Soundtrack. If you don’t know the piece, you should check it out below. Seriously, here it is (funny stuff):
I guess it’s time for me to do it. I’m finally going to review this Glenlivet. Please think well of me in the morning my sweet, sweet whisky…
On the nose – Upon initial sniff I am reminded of that type of woman that lies about her age. Yes, like Leslie Mann from the new movie “This is 40.” Sure she’s 40 but she tells everyone she’s 36 and, you know what, she looks it too.
Funny enough, this is a 36yo whisky but I’d never assume it as such. Sure there are elements of age in here such as wood spice and clean church pews however, there’s a delicate fruity quality and some clotted cream as well that makes it feel younger.
Let’s explore further…
A whiff of smoke in the background adds to notes of over ripe, browning pineapple and some nail polish remover. Model glue meets white sugar in a honey reduction.
So far, I’m impressed.
On the mouth – Presto-chango-alla-kazam, the flavor profile is quite the different animal from the initial nosing impression.
Step back, take a breath, dive in again, Hatton.
Here we go: An oily start but give it ¾ of a second and it starts dry the tongue. Popsicle sticks soaked in the aforementioned nail polish remover, wood spice and brown spice and wilting dandelion stems.
Some tart, white wine like elements here as well. As I try to think of the wine grape I am reminded that I am a whisky reviewer and not a wine reviewer. I will stop all attempts in guessing the wine grape.
And now I am noticing some pepper and hints of artificially flavored banana Laffy taffy. Better yet, banana chips.
Finish – A long finish with, guess what? Hints of wine! This time I *can* tell you that the wine is identifiable by myself and much more dessert like. I’d liken it to a Moscato.
In sum – A bit on the pricey side but also a rarity to find a single cask of Glenlivet (and a 36yo one at that, too).
Don’t let the nose fool you, this whisky will take you on a bit of a ride. What a great, great nose! The flavors were nice as well, I was just not expecting the change. While I’d not choose this as a celebratory whisky, I’d surely reach for it when I had some “me time” and wanted a bit of a change.
This is a fun whisky to drink when you want to really think about whisky and ponder life a bit.