The theme was relatively open to interpretation. Anything below 50%, for example, as some (snobs) would not consider it manly enough. Fruity whiskies, since clichés tell us men drink hard booze, while anyone drinking fruit juice is effeminate. You get the picture, hopefully. All that because, when this was planned, the date, in the middle of the summer, suggested high temperatures.
The suspects: adc, mpd, Psycho, ruckus, sonicvince, dom666, JS and myself.
|For real, yo!|
Irish Mist Honey Liqueur (35%, OB, ca 2014) (dom666): wow, this is as unmanly as it gets. It has all the subtlety of a Liberace outfit too. Nose: super sweet. Honey (no shit, Sherlock), some herbs, genepy, lemon (adc). Mouth: super sweet (again). Close to mead, extremely syrupy and flowery. Finish: this is like drinking cough syrup -- but good cough syrup. Pleasant, though not something to drink litres of. Recipe for a headache, this is. 5/10
|Can we start, already?|
|Team Glenglassaugh reprazent, yo!|
Knockando 25yo 1980/2005 (48.3%, Duncan Taylor Rare Auld, Oak Cask C#1908, 260b) (Psycho): another delicate and effeminate dram, this. We have not had it for a while. Nose: all sorts of flowers, cut pears and quince in a bath of hot milk, augmented with old brandy. Discreet, but oh! so nice. Mouth: milky, with woody tones (pine splinters) and a faint bitterness. Finish: long and fruity (peach), with also wood, vanilla and coconut. Wood-driven whisky, superbly made. Dram of the day for me, I think. 9/10
We move on to the next room for food: a ton of spaghetti al ragú. Marvellous. We all eat way too much. In fact, JS is close to illness. I do not feel too proud myself, but hey! it was worth it. :o)
Aberfeldy 1999/2014 (46%, GMP Connoisseurs Choice) (ruckus): nose: walnut husk, nuts, polished wood, dried peach, a chesterfield sofa with lacquered, wooden arms. This is rather manly, to some extent. We will drink it anyway! Mouth: powerful and creamy, close to custard in texture. Finish: soft and creamy, with custard, chocolate pudding and a few drops of peach juice, as well as super-dark cocoa beans. I cannot claim huge familiarity with Aberfeldy, but the few I have tried have been very nice indeed. 8/10
Tomatin 35yo 1978/2013 (44.1%, Cadenhead Small Batch, Bourbon Hogsheads, 594b) (me): this is low strength, fruity, and there is little of it left. Must share it. Nose: pepper (Psycho), flowers (ruckus), overripe fruit (dom666), marzipan-like -- but not marzipan (ruckus). It is strawberry bubblegum, you fools! A tiny scent of dunnage warehouse, maybe. Mouth: juicy fruit cascade. This is extraordinary. Finish: more juicy fruit, with wood shavings. What is it? A fleeting gasp of passion fruit! And peach pulp. Wunderbar! Had this been a surprise for me, it would likely be my dram of the day. But yeah, I know it quite well. 9/10
Invergordon 37yo 1972/2009 (46.6%, Càrn Mòr Celebration of the Cask, Bourbon Barrels C#60478+63675, 259b) (JS): a grain is precisely what we need to reset our palates, so the following have a chance to shine, after the Tomatin. Nose: bakery, with burnt caramel in the back. Mouth: creamy custard and light chocolate mousse. Finish: More bakery goodness, with a dash of that typical blackcurrant. Wonderful grain, this. 8/10
Balblair 1989 3rd release (46%, OB, ex-Bourbon Barrels) (sonicvince): another light and soft one. Nose: lemon juice, calamantsi. Quite straightforward, but good (provided you like lemon). Mouth: Acidic, as in: milk, peppered with lemon juice. Finish: long, Acidic, slightly drying, with lemon and green wood. Good, this. 8/10
|By this point, some see it like this.|
dom666: "J'aimais pas la poule de ma grand'mère. J'aime la poule de ma mère. Mais ma grand'mère cuisinait comme un pied."
me: "Regarde comme elle est fourbe!"
ruckus: "C'est un croisement entre 'fou' et 'tourbe'."
me: "C'est quelqu'un qui boit trop d'Ardbeg."
Bruichladdich XVII 17yo (46%, OB, ca 2002, 02-8143 2344) (dom666): nose: some sea air, but this one seems mostly spent -- there is barely enough left to fill everyone's glass. Mouth: more robust than the previous drams, this. Fortunately, it still retains some taste, mostly sea spray. Finish: yep, spent. Brine, sea spray and a bit of earth. The level in this one really has been too low for too long. It is mostly evaporated.
sonicvince wants to leg it. ruckus, who also has to be dropped at the station, wants to tag along. I had other plans, which now need rushing.
Firstly, I pour dom666 a Longmorn 1996/2008 (57.9%, BBR for la Maison du Whisky, C#56788), since he claimed earlier this week to never have had a bad Longmorn. He agrees this one is not good at all. And that, dear reader, is why I use it for cooking.
To give it a ridiculously strong opponent and put it out of its misery, we open this at the same time:
|I wish I was a fisherman|
Tumblin' on the seas
Far away from dry land
And its bitter memories
|The Cure - Disintegration|
Today is also the day www.whiskogs.com goes down forever, bringing an eight-year adventure to a close. Heartfelt thanks to all who contributed through the years. It was a hard decision to make, but I had to make it. Trying that Longmorn made it less sour.