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PREMIUM WHISKEY

AT THE

WHISKEY TRAWLER

What Premium Whiskey will not fix, there is no cure for. With 60+ premium whiskeys, you’re sure to find a cure for whatever ails you, and when you do, celebrate it neat or on the rocks. Our collection of bourbons, ryes, single malt scotches, blended scotches, Japanese whiskies, and more will please even the most discerning palate.

Nose: First off there is definitely a sweetness, which is as to be expected from a sherry cask whisky. This is joined by a citrus aroma, orange zest with a hint of cinnamon and the impression of an open wood fire.

Palate: Again there is a distinct sweetness from that sherry cask; the overall taste is rich and indulgent, dried fruit, caramel and a warming oaky smoke.

Finish: With such rich bold flavour the finish is long with a fantastic spice that lingers.

Nose: Fruit salad, fresh herbs and exotic spice.

Palate: Bourbon oak is prominent on the palate, with citrus and soft spicy smoke.

Finish: Medium length, with chewy spiced oak.

There is an art to blending the whiskies here. Yes, this is a single malt distillery, but it is the variety of whiskies that are made here that make Yamazaki whisky special. It is the variety of shapes and sizes of the stills, the variety in the sizes and kind of barrels used and it is the different ages chosen to make this whisky. In this case, all are at least 18 years old, but some are much older. Roughly 80% of the whisky is aged in Sherry cask with American and Mizunara casks used for the remaining 20%.

NOSE
Rich fruit, soft warm pastries, buttery caramel, vanilla, malt, spice and a touch of oak and ash. This is a lovely aroma.

PALATE
The palate keeps the rich full theme moving along with notes of fruit, malt, char, dark sweets, vanilla, toasted grain, nuts and again a touch of oak but this time accompanied by some spice.

FINISH
Long fruity drawl interspersed with pockets of malt, nuts, spice and oak.

Yamazaki 12 Years was the flagship whisky from the Yamazaki distillery in Japan. At Suntory they use a unique aging process that involves Spanish, American (ex-Bourbon) and Japanese (Mizunara) oak. This gives the whisky a unique character all its own.

 

NOSE
Rich fruit, buttery graham, malty sweetness, hay and a bit of honeydew build an aroma that is quite pleasing to the senses.

PALATE
Fruit, buttery graham, malt, citrus peels, hay, spice and a candy sweetness towards the end that reminds me of those orange Circus Peanuts. Not a bad flavor all-in-all, a simple sipper for sure.

FINISH
Medium malty fade accompanied by notes of nuts, fruit and a bit of char.

The most commonly encountered offerings from Glenmorangie make up their Core Range of single malt Scotch whiskies. Included in this lineup are the 12-year-old Lasanta, which is finished in sherry casks; 12-year-old port cask finished Quinta Ruban; 12-year-old sauternes cask finished Nectar.

Nose: Soft and lightly floral (hibiscus) initially, soon opening up to release dark cocoa and spiced plum. The layers unfold slowly and intriguingly. One moment lemon meringue transitions into key lime before bread pudding followed by leather and tobacco leaves. Sweet, fruity, and finessed. No rough patches to be found whatsoever. I could spend quite some time with just the nose alone, and I have.

Palate: Full, round, and somewhat oily mouthfeel not unlike very well-crafted rum. To steal a word from the nose section: finessed. Absolutely classy presentation. Subtly sweet with notes of dark cocoa, tobacco, a hint of honey-roasted cashew at one point, orange zest, brown sugar, and a never-ending parade of baked goods with a variety of citrus icings. Again, no rough patches at all.

The transition into the finish is exquisite; there is a full-bodied burn that warms like the most stubborn coals of a dying bonfire while avoiding any hint of brassiness. The cocoa and tobacco bid a fond farewell before the sherry arrives very late to deliver a phenomenal and unexpected encore.

Glenmorangie has been an innovator in the industry for years, pioneering cask expressions and experimental bottlings of their exceptional Highland whisky. Often cited as the biggest-selling whisky in Scotland, Glenmorangie is also attracting a lot of international attention, winning awards left and right. Among their cask-aged expressions are the Nectar D’Or (matured in French Sauternes casks after 10 years minimum in bourbon barrels), Quinta Ruban (matured in port barrels), Lasanta (matured in oloroso sherry casks), and more. Glenmorangie sources its oak casks in the Ozark mountains and loans them for four years to the Jack Daniels distillery before using them for Scotch. Glenmorangie’s water flows from the Tarlogie Springs in the hills above the distillery, over sandstone (yielding hard water) and picks up flavor components from the clover and heather in the hills before entering the distillery, where 24 very long-necked stills called the “giraffes” make Glenmorangie’s classic Highland malt. Glenmorangie, like Ardbeg, is owned by luxury giant LVMH (Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy).

Nose: The port finish comes through as a bouquet of fruit aromas. While not specifically smelling like port, the malt has elements of fresh grapes, raisins, cherries, and so on. The fruit character is fresher and more tart than the sticky, dried-fruit profile of sherry aging. Some vanilla oak underlies – but does not compete with – the fruit. Well-balanced, refreshing, and thankfully not cloying.

Palate: Medium bodied, with initial aspects of caramel or nougat. A tad on the burny side. The fruit is fainter, but more reminiscent of ruby port.

Finish: Medium-long. Caramel again, and marshmallow. The fruit returns only as a faint candy coating as the whole fades into mild barrel char.

With Water: Water awakens some indistinct tart fruit on the nose.

Original is the core bottling in the Glenmorangie range, released to replace the old 10 year old. This really is a classic malt, so creamy and fruity.

Nose: Very fruity and thick. Rich notes of lemon, nectarine and apple. Spices.

Palate: Fresh and balanced, vanilla. Boiled sweets, very creamy, tiramisu, toffee.

Finish: Quite long, gentle, malty and very fruity.

Barrel finished whiskey seems to be all the rage with many distillers using it as a way to help launch new and unique products in the market. That said, barrel finished whiskeys aren’t anything new to the Woodford Master’s Collection. Sometimes it’s worked well and sometimes it hasn’t, as was the case with the 2014 Woodford Master’s Collection: Sonoma-Cutrer Finish. What makes this release more unique is the fact that they chose brandy barrels, a finishing type that is still rare to finish whiskey in.

Flavorwise, this year’s Brandy Cask Finish delivered a pleasant surprise. The flavor profile is one solidly rooted in the Woodford’s lineage, but enhanced to pull a more fruit forward flavor profile vs the more predominant grain found in standard Woodford Reserve. While Woodford Reserve is usually nothing to write home about, the brandy finishing ever so slightly enhances it into a more exciting product. It may not blow you away, but in a side by side comparison to standard Woodford Reserve, it’s definitely a more pleasant drinking experience.

NOSE

Lush fruits instantly jump out the moment I bring the glass to my nose. Warm spiced cherries mingle with berry filled cobbler topped with a hint of cranberry. Cinnamon bark, baking chocolate, and hints of light oak form the base. The nose is very warm and inviting and makes me wish standard Woodford smelled this way.

PALATE

It’s not as grain forward as standard Woodford Reserve, but instead has a quick burst of light berry sweetness that is followed by a drier oakier taste. It presents the usual thin mouthfeel I find in standard Woodford Reserve, however in this case, it’s an actual fault of this whiskey. It’s too delicate and in a way it feels like the whiskey is purposely trying to not coat my mouth. I feel I’m trying to wrestle this whiskey to even taste it, which is a bit of a shame since there are traces of good flavors here if only they could be pinned down easily.

FINISH

While the nose and palate do a good job of helping highlight the brandy finishing on the whiskey, the finish reminds me more of a standard Woodford Reserve finish. Gone is the berry sweetness found in the nose and palate. Instead, a lingering buttery finish is present that provides a quick hit of green apple, hay, grass, and dried raisins before slowly mellowing out to light oak. It peters out into a drier astringent note, which almost ruins the whole experience. Thankfully whiskeys aren’t determined after just one sip. After sitting with it for a while and getting acclimated to it, the astringent note becomes less and less overpowering and more a slight flaw rather than something that really takes away from the experience.

Nose:  Earthy with some salty play-dough.  More peat than expected, but not huge by any means.  Leather and horse blankets.  Slightly ashy.  Orange and pear.  Rather more farmy than expected.  Cinnamon and mint.  The peat influence is massive by no means, but pleasantly over-arching.

Palate:  Ashy and smoky again.  All of those farmy notes coming through here too.  Flinty and mineral-rich.  Peppery.  Wet rock.  Some wine notes.  Lemon rind with orange influence.

Drink: Neat

Nose:  Vanilla, dried fruit and wood. All the classic aromas of a bourbon with a distinct top note of port.  Vanilla, caramel, custard, banana, maple syrup and saffron all stand out individually but also blend harmoniously to deliver a sweet, smooth and enticing aroma.

Palate:  

Caramel, vanilla, fruit and chocolate anchored around a smoky undertone. Angel’s Envy has a quite bold yet surprisingly sip-able profile that comes on hot initially, delivers sweet hints of vanilla and fruit over the palette and finishes with a delicate lingering aftertaste that only leaves you thirsty for more.

Drink: Straight

Nose: Quite pleasant with sweet corn bread, yeast, and a hint of black pepper spice. It’s full of raw corn aromas.

 

Palate: The corn again charges through and is offset by plenty of pepper, with gives a nice bite to the whiskey while still keeping things in check, heat wise. It finishes spicy and dry.

 

Drink: On the rocks

Nose: Aromatic oils with a touch of wood and spicy toffee.

 

Palate: Wonderfully mellow and smooth, a mouthful of complex flavor: fudge, toffee, spice, hints of wood and leather, vanilla, and a gentle sherry nuttiness. Dignified sherry in a malty embrace. Rich oak. A long and lingering finish carries the theme of wood, spice and toffee right through to the end.

 

Drink: Straight

Nose: The nose is clean and complex: crushed grain, grasses, sweet spice, and the bitter herbal note of rye.

Palate: It’s all there on the tongue with a light barrel character, moving to a neatly integrated finish.

The rye and malt work together in tandem for a smooth sip and a heavier, rich mouthfeel. The finish is short, with pepper, dried fruit and malt.

 

Drink: Straight or on the rocks

Nose: Exquisite delicacy of summer-like fragrances, with playful interlacing of floral and fruity aromas. A sensuous touch of exotic fruit, notably pineapple. Sweet creamy vanilla, honey, pineapple, vanilla, pressed apples and a little cinnamon.

 

Palate: Honeyed floral notes shine through. A silky feel, flowing on the tongue. Smooth and sweet fruit notes of white peaches and pears poached in vanilla syrup. Apple cores, fresh and fruity trifle and creamy citrus.

 

Drink: Neat

Nose: Hints of honey. Caramel and charred oak, a little orange blossom, manuka honey and vanilla.

 

Palate: Thick and creamy with notes of vanilla, toasty oak, honey again, a little apricot too.
Drink: On the rocks

Nose: Delicate floral notes are intertwined with a zesty citrus orange and soft fresh fruits. Hints of honey and spicy oak enveloped with a rich vanilla sweetness

 

Palate: Beautifully sweet and a rich vanilla flavour. Brown sugar and creamy toffee balanced with oak notes and just a hint of spice. Super smooth finish with lingering sweetness.

 

Drink: Neat

Nose: Very crisp and fresh on the nose, lots of creamy vanilla and warm, spicy flavour. Notes of oak, toffee, hints of smoke.

 

Palate: Very soft start, smooth and sweet with hints of berry and citrus. This finish is delicate and warm with a return of vanilla, cream and toast.

 

Drink: Neat

Nose: Corn bread, menthol, and dark fruit hit first on the nose, followed by figgy pudding, stewed plums, and cinnamon, highlighting a very slight pepper and punch. A spiced, minty, delicate nose to be sure.

 

Palate: Spicy, peppery, honey, light-bodied, gentle bite. A very soft, smooth mouthfeel is rounded out by cinnamon and golden raisin. Both complex and balanced, the bourbon’s high rye mash bill doesn’t overwhelm it, rather making for a nuanced flavor profile.

 

Drink: Neat

Nose: Blackcurrant, brown sugar, orange, plum and raisin aroma. A lot of sweetness including orange, vanilla and a nice honey-heather. The sherry finishing is pronounced here.

 

Palate: A very nice candied sweetness and some orange. The finish is fresh and fruity with long lasting oaky sweetness.

 

Drink: Neat

Nose: Complex aromas of toffee, hints of orange peel, herbs, honey, leather and oak

 

Palate: Bold, dry, oaky flavors with notes of candied almonds and very rich cocoa

 

Drink: Straight

 

Nose: Spicy with distinct notes of rye, black pepper, cedar and cassia bark sweetened with a dusting of marzipan. Hints of pear, apple and almond dance in its depths.

 

Palate: Clove, rye, mint and honey mingle together with hints of apple and malt. Long and sweetly spiced finish.

 

Drink: Straight

Nose: Toffee sweetness and the sawdust from freshly cut wood. Has a very toasty aroma, with sweet spices and deep, thick caramel.

 

Palate: Creamy and very soft. Then it opens up, in fact it explodes with spiciness which concentrates on the tip of the tongue. It’s on nutmeg, mulled wine spices, allspice, cinnamon. Also a hint of hot apple juice. Oaky finish.

 

Drink: On the rocks

Nose: Coastal smoke and ash soon make way for bergamot, orange zest, lemon slices and some hay before becoming rather floral, heather smoke now competing with the ash.

 

Palate: Lovely and rounded, honeyed even, initially. Vanilla, perfumed smoke and coastal elements develop. Dark Peat. Blossom, oily sweetness. Smoky, fruity, coastal, delicious.

 

Drink: Straight

Nose: Classic, medicinal peat notes up front, supported by citrus-y, chocolate-y sweet notes and soft barley.

 

Palate: This full bodied whisky is initially sweet up front- matching the nose, then the classic dry, peaty, ashy flavours come bounding in followed by a lovely rich finish arising from the rich fruits of the European casks.

 

Drink: Neat

Nose: Orange peel and coriander. Heather blossoms, rose water, peach sherbet. Deeply honeyed, floral, and rich.  A touch of peat, in a pithy, green herbal note. A dash of water brings out a little green apple and mown grass, and heightens the very small amount of peat (in a mossy/earthy way, not smokey).

 

Palate: Viscous and honeyed. Full bodied if not creamy. Sweet baked goods (sugar cookies), raw local honey, red raspberries. Later, there is some jammy red fruits like pie filling. Very smooth, with nary a tongue burn. Water does this a dis-service, thinning the body with only a few drops, and stinging the tongue with alcohol.

 

Drink: Neat

Nose: Quite thick and full. There is a beautiful sweetness with notes of toasty oak, toffee, spicy stewed fruits, a touch of resin and a lovely crème anglaise character.

 

Palate: Full and sublimely smooth with notes if stewed Bramley apples, malmsey, a touch of aniseed and a hint of spice.

 

Drink: on the rocks

Nose: Spice comes charging out of the Glencairn Copita followed by caramel, cinnamon, cherry heavy dark fruit and wood. There is some butterscotch playing around in the background with a bit of acetone.

 

Palate: The wheat grain makes this bourbon sweet and a very pleasant sip. The vanilla and caramels really come through more as they hit the tongue. It’s not a very complex sip, but at least a pleasant one.

 

Drink: Neat

Nose: Slightly nutty with clear oak notes. You also get clear caramel, slight cinnamon, and very subtle rye.

 

Palette: Lush and sweet from the start with vanilla and caramel leading the pack. The sweet notes are mixed with the cinnamon. The transition to spice is delightful and the mid-palate is a welcome union of cinnamon, clove, rye and oak all together. There is a slight heat at the end of the mid-palate, which carries to a long finish

 

Drink:Neat

Nose: big heaps of cherries and vanilla, with subtle notes of leather and tobacco

 

Palette: Rather hot at first, the spices coming to the forefront. This is followed by peaches, more cherries and a bit of orange zest
Drink: Neat

Nose: a perfectly balanced blend of Scottish heather and honey with delicate notes of unripened pear and a hint of oak

 

Palette: a delightful blend of soft vanilla with honey and blooming heather; well rounded with a slight smoky sensation emerging
Drink: on the rocks

Nose:  Reeks of rye, and behind that are notes of caramel, pepper, leather, sweet tobacco, and vanilla with a touch of wood, dill and baking spices

 

Palette: That rye spice comes barreling out again with solid notes of caramel, cinnamon, pepper, nutmeg and leather. The tobacco notes have turned a bit bitter and the baking spices have taken on more of a nutmeg and clove feel

 

Drink: Neat

Nose: Grassy malt, caramel, butterscotch and a light fruit lazily make their way out of the glass followed by some nice lemony citrus and a touch of spice. There is a hint of wood and some coppery undertones from the single pot still.

 

Palette: Caramel, toffee, malt and a pronounced fruit work their way across the palate. Some nice warm woody notes pick up and the spice from the nose morphs into being more cinnamon driven with a tiny bit of vanilla and lemony citrus.
Drink: Old fashioned

Nose: Toffee popcorn wafts out of the glass, with some sweet spice from the oak and hint of candied orange peel. Some fresh lemon zestiness brightens things up, along with that classic Auchentoshan grassiness.

 

Palette: Soft and silky mouthfeel, with pronounced coconut and toffee notes. The sweet spice continues on to the palate, but no hard edges here. Very easy drinking.

 

Drink: Neat

Nose: The sherry is very prominent and is the first aroma to make it’s way out of the glass. Meandering out on their own time schedule are some notes of caramel, malt, strawberries, red licorice, sugar, light orchard fruit and a bit of vanilla.

 

Palette: The flavor does a 180 with the pears and fresh red apples coming up first. Malt leads the second wave with sherry, honey, dessert spice and just a bit of oak and burnt sugar.
Drink: w/ a bit of water

Nose: rich dried fruits from the European oak sherry casks, soft and complex with touches of toasted oak, honey, coconut and figs

 

Palette: hints of smooth creamy toffee linger on the tip of your tongue, spicy with a nice allspice note on top and caramel syrup sweetness

 

Drink: Neat

Nose: a big blast of sweetness immediately greets you with this one. Notes of vanilla, caramel, brown sugar, and even a bit of strawberry are present.

 

Palette: Less sweet than the nose alludes to, but still pleasant and unassuming. Notes of toffee, vanilla and oak are most prevalent with fainter hints of toasted nut and cinnamon. Overall has a thin but buttery mouthfeel that goes down smooth

 

Drink: Neat

Every bottle of Templeton Rye will now also have to feature the words “Distilled in Indiana” and must remove the words “Prohibition Era Recipe” and “Small Batch”. Thus, in spite of any merits the whiskey possesses, the lies it has built itself on inevitably hurt its credibility and reputation among whiskey drinkers

NOSE
Spiced orange candy, dill, rye spice, clove, some earthy underpinnings, a bit of wood and a spice that reminds me Moroccan food. I can’t pin down exactly which spices it’s reminding me of, but that could have been the chemist’s or Kerkhoff’s intent all along… who knows.

PALATE
Ambiguous sweetness, rye spice, dill, gummy orange slices candy, cinnamon, clove, touch of wood and raw grains. The dill in both the nose and the palate remind me of other MGP 95% rye whiskies like Bulleit rye, Dickel rye and some of the Willet rye releases which makes sense. Though I honestly don’t know what flavors come from the whiskey and which come from the added flavoring. There’s no way of knowing.

FINISH
Medium in length with notes of clove, cinnamon, dill, anise, wood, and rye which pops a bit as it fades out, or maybe that’s the flavoring chemicals popping on my tongue. Your guess is as good as mine.

BALANCE, BODY & FEEL
The overzealous spice shifts it a bit off balanced. It has more bite that an 80 proof should have and the medium body doesn’t really do much for it one way or the other. It’s drinkable neat, but the heavy spices and aggressive texture works better in cocktails.

NOSE
Cloying caramel, light fruit, light citrus and a light nuttiness create the initial aroma on this light whisky. Some light notes of raw grain, brown sugar and an ethereal vanilla bring up the rear. The whole thing gets topped off with a funky raw note that makes me wonder what the ratio of young to old whisky is in here.

PALATE
Cloying caramel, citrus, vanilla, fruit and a doughy caky quality mix and mingle with a watery sweetness and maple syrup while a brooding raw grain haunts the background.

FINISH
Caramel syrup, vanilla, candy corn, watery maple and raw grain bleed out in a long slow finish that turns cloying.

BALANCE, BODY & FEEL
Balance isn’t that great; feels like it’s lacking in the cohesion department. Medium body and a soft watery texture with only a minor burn.

Nose: chocolate and raspberry aromas, with rich brioche and stewed cherries. Sweet fruit and oloroso sherry notes, layered with honey and vanilla

 

Palette: smooth and mellow with beautifully combined flavors-butty and sweetness, cinnamon spiciness. Fresh red fruits combine with sponge-cake mix and cinnamon and a sprinkling of black pepper.

 

Drink: straight

Nose: An aromatic infusion of wild herbs, heather, honey and orchard fruits.

 

Palate: Round and creamy with a full, rich taste of honey and ripe apples, with vanilla, hazelnut and butterscotch notes.

 

Drink: Neat

Nose: Bright green fruit, some green grape skins, and acidic apple. White sugar, and raw cane juice. Some interesting (but mild) spices, cinnamon and nutmeg from the French oak.

Palate: Light. Some mild wood. A bit raw on the alcohol (like the 12), and perhaps somewhat watery. Golden raisins.

Finish: A twist here: maybe dried raspberries? Some nice dry tannins. Medium long, with a surprising touch of lime oil at the tail end.

Nose 
Sherry,  Oranges.  Spices, peat and Marlboro smoke.  Interesting and inviting a sip.

Palate 
Orange marmalade, slight vanilla, a transition to summer savory, and other herbal notes before the arrival of some oak.

Finish 

Orange peel.  Mint and a little ginger/cinnamon before fading to heavy lashes of sea salt.

White Rye Whiskey is made from 100% American rye grain. Fresh from the still to your glass, it starts with sweetness and hints of dried cacao, followed by a smooth, dry, and spicy finish. Enjoy on the rocks or spice up your favorite cocktail.

Laphroaig 10 Review

 

Laphroaig 10 Review

When the flagship product tastes this good, you know you’re dealing with a quality brand. The distillery got it’s start in 1815 by Donald and Alexander Johnston and was run by the family till 1954 (139 years) when the last member of the family died without an heir. This lead to it brand changing hands several times over the years and is Currently owned by Suntory, who now owns Beam. Beam has owned Laphroaig since 2005 when it was called Fortune Brands. Though through all of this one thing has remained the same and that is quality.

In addition to being almost 200 years old (I’m expecting big things from them next year) It’s also the only whisky to carry the Royal Warrant of the Prince of Wales. A Royal Warrant means that they supply a good or service to a royal court or a certain royal personage and has no significance beyond lending prestige and quality, via-association, to the brand. They received this honor after the prince visited his favorite distillery in 1994 and they’ve included it on their packaging ever since. Basically the royal stamp of approval because they make tasty whisky.

Laphroaig 10 Review

ABV: 43%
Age: 10 years
Price: $43
Distiller: D. Johnston & Co.

EYE
Light golden straw

NOSE
Warm peat comes out first followed by some nice salty briny notes and accompanied with some caramel, iodine, smoke and char. These big heavy oily notes get cut with hints of citrus, light fruit, malt, honey and a slightly vegetal underpinning. A wonderfully complex nose with layer after layer of enticing aromas.

TASTE
That campfire smokiness comes tearing across the palate like a bat out of hell with vanilla, butterscotch, malt, Novocain and graham in the sidecar. A mild peat and citrus bring up the rear along with some notes of cocoa, fruit and honey. It’s a fantastically deep and rich flavor that’s a bit like eating a s’more, campfire and all.

BALANCE, BODY & FEEL
Very well balanced with a medium body and a light smooth texture that makes it incredibly easy to sip.

FINISH
Smoke, malt, graham, an ambiguous sugary sweetness and a medicinal note play out with a hint of wood on a long and pleasant finish.

NOSE
A wafting of grain alcohol is the first thing that meets the nostrils followed by honey, pear and an ambiguous over ripe orchard fruit. A bit of malt and citrus are wandering around in there with a strange dusty quality running throughout.

TASTE
A light and clean tasting beverage that starts out with malt, vanilla and under ripe citrus. Included in this flavor package are some grassy notes, cocoa and an ambiguous fruit that borders on banana with the alcohol making a strong statement, especially in the back end, with just a touch of caramel sliding around.

FEEL
Light, smooth and easy to drink.

FINISH
Malt and alcohol with a touch of oak and earth. It has a very short finish which I don’t really mind in this case.

NOSE
The second you’re sniffing Jack you know you’re sniffing Jack. There is a very strong astringent Jack spice that comes up first and foremost. Under that strong ambiguous spice are hints of oily charcoal, maple, brown sugar, wood, some soft sweet grains and overripe citrus.

TASTE
The nose is altogether not too unpleasant. All tied together it’s not bad, but for me the taste is where it all falls apart. It starts with a strong medicinal caramel followed by some soot and burnt toffee. Swimming around in that glass are also some notes of imitation vanilla, burnt cherry pie and a slight yeastiness to it that reminds me a bit of Jim Beam white. Overall there is a strange chemically taste that runs through the whole thing. On the rocks it tightens up and brings out a bit more of the caramel.

FEEL
Oily with some burn and surprisingly dry considering it’s low proof.

FINISH
Caramel syrup fades to corn and oily wood. The aftertaste sticks around for quite a while giving it a very long finish.

NOSE
Caramel and maple with some floral notes at first. After a second brown sugar, toffee, vanilla, citrus light oak and corn notes appear.

TASTE
Caramel, cocoa and maple were the first flavors that came across my palate. Accompanying these guys were pepper, cinnamon, vanilla, smoky char and some wood. I didn’t smell much rye, but on the palate the rye comes through a bit heavier.

FEEL
Very round and smooth. Obscenely easy to drink neat.

FINISH
Caramel, vanilla and light citrus slowly fade to corn and maple wood for a long finish.

NOSE
Caramel syrup, rye spice, citrus, sour cherry candy, oak, clove, raisiny dried fruit and a bit of caramel and vanilla. Light bits of cocoa and mint come and go as the whiskey sits and opens.

PALATE
Rye spice, red fruit (berries and cherries), citrus peels, oak, peanuts, caramel and a bit of nutmeg and vanilla with some lighter notes of pepper, leather and menthol.

FINISH
Long spice, caramel, oak and vanilla.

BALANCE, BODY & FEEL
Good sense of balance, round full body and a heavy smooth feel.

NOSE
Bourbon spice, wood, caramel, ripe dark fruit and hints of citrus build up and mix with notes of toasted grains and vanilla. It’s a powerful and full nose that erupts with a splash of water. Baking spices like cinnamon, nutmeg and clove mix with rolling notes of butterscotch, rock candy and a lurking bit of peanut butter fudge.

TASTE
Caramel, toasted nuts, wood, citrus, dark fruit, toffee and molasses create a very appealing flavor that unfolds like reverse origami with a splash of water. Vanilla, corn, butter scotch, bruleed pastry, olde fashioned rock candy, cinnamon, nutmeg, white pepper, leather and toasted nuts nearly explode across the palate.

FINISH
Long and winding with notes of caramel, wood, citrus peel, raw grains, vanilla and corn that doesn’t change a whole lot with a splash of water.

BALANCE, BODY & FEEL
Excellent balance of sweet, savory and earthy that’s perfectly complimented by a thick full body and a rich oily texture. For being 113.2 proof it has surprisingly little burn and is dangerously easy to drink.

NOSE
Weak malt, fruit, strawberry Necco, oxidized chocolate (liked after melting and putting in the fridge) and cantaloupe skin with a light floral touch and a bit of wood that’s reminiscent of a box of tooth picks. Light and just sort of… “meh”.

PALATE
Fruit, malt, spice and dried fruit with that same light floral touch and tooth-pick-like wood. The nose is a bit more complex than the palate where the whisky seems to flatline.

FINISH
Short and watery with light notes of malt, fruit and a bit of earth.

BALANCE, BODY & FEEL
Ok balance, medium body and light watery feel.

NOSE
A cinnamon heavy spice rack comes up front followed by notes of caramel, rye, citrus, rich vanilla, oak and dark fruit. Leather and a fudge quality (think bourbon flavored fudge), round out a nice clean and inviting aroma.

PALATE
A deep and delicious amount of oak, spice, caramel and citrus come out first followed by dark fruit, leather, molasses and coca. Complex and hearty it drinks like a meal.

FINISH
Long and filled with oak, caramel, rye spice, vanilla, dark fruit, cocoa and a hint of gingersnaps.

BALANCE, BODY & FEEL
Very well balanced with a rich full body and a thick oily texture.

NOSE
Caramel, spice, corn, vanilla, a complex dark fruit and oak combine with butterscotch, citrus and a haunting bit of acetone to create a nose that is sweet without being cloying and fun to sit and sniff.

PALATE
Caramel, butterscotch, brown sugar, toasted nuts, oak and that same complex dark fruit work together to create a dark sweet flavor that is everything you want in a bourbon and then it gives you more by adding some great notes of pepper and leather.

FINISH
Rich velvety caramel gives way to oak, vanilla and a dark heavy sweetness that fades on a long, slow and trailing finish.

BALANCE, BODY & FEEL
A bit oak heavy, but not enough to throw it off and maintains a good balance. Thick and heavy with an overall smooth character that screams sipping bourbon.

NOSE
Caramel and peat arrive at the scene first and threaten to take over but stop just short of domination. Orange zest, smoked meat, iodine, brine and some crisp red apples orbit the dense caramel and peat core. Overall there is a slight medicinal / novocain quality to the whole aroma that is more intriguing than it is off putting.

TASTE
Peaty upfront with that same iodine meets novocain quality hanging around. Burnt orange glaze, ash malt, subtle toffee, coffee cake, cinnamon and something a little hard to explain swims in the murky orange caramel depths. It’s like a vanilla mint pepper combo that adds a punchy sweetness.

FEEL
Oily and coating it’s a smooth and relaxing dram.

FINISH
Smoky malt fades to smoky oak fades to smoke for a long and savory finish.

Aged exclusively in first-fill casks (60% of it sherry cask), and its oak intensity shows. Sweet, but with a steady dose of dried spice oak resin, and teasing tobacco to back it up. Silky texture and lush, with fallen orchard fruit, tangerine, chocolate covered orange, and lemon meringue. A firm dried spice finish rounds it all out. Sort of like The Dalmore 12 yr. old pumped up on steroids.

NOSE

As expected, there’s zero smokiness to be found in the nose – it’s all deep, sweet scents. The Dalmore literature says I should smell orange marmalade in here … but I don’t. What I do get is quite a bit of maple syrup and raisin, with a general spiciness and a distinct hint of milk chocolate at the back. There’s a distinct alcohol note, and I suspect their 15 year and older offerings are a bit more subtle in that department.

Once you’ve enjoyed the scent of your scotch for a while, it’s time to move on to the taste. I’ve tried several preparations. Here’s what I found.

PALATE

The Dalmore 12 Year greets you with an aggressive sweetness up front as it hits your tongue. This spreads out into a long, pronounced alcohol burn that spreads to coat your entire mouth. There’s a touch of spiciness here, and a decent hit of citrus, followed by a little caramel. The long, lingering finish has some coffee notes and lots of oak character – it gives that tannic sensation of your mouth drying out that you find with many red wines.

Adding a bit of filtered water or spring water often helps whiskies “open up” or bloom, and The Dalmore is no exception. The water tones down the aggressive sweetness and helps cut some of the alcohol burn, though the latter is still present and accounted for. The notes of citrus are still very prominent, but I’m having a hard time finding the “sweet vanilla pod” their literature suggests. I was hoping some of the milk chocolate from the nose would be present in the taste, but if it’s there, my palate can’t discern it.

 

NOSE
Dill, rye and spice dominate the nose which is typical amongst young MGP ryes. Orange candy, brulee and notes of grain, raw sugar and touches of fruit and caramel hang out in the background.

PALATE
Dill, rye and a sharp spice again dominate but this time bring notes of citrus zest, caramel, vanilla and a box of warm baking spices with them. Light fruit and a touch of astringency float lightly over the palate and blend into the background.

FINISH
Long and driven by notes of rye, spice, dill, vanilla, caramel and a slightly herbalness. Not like gin herbs, more earthy and leafy than that.

BALANCE, BODY & FEEL
Good balance with a medium body and a smooth mild texture that makes it very easy to drink.

NOSE
Dill, rye and spice dominate the nose which is typical amongst young MGP ryes. Orange candy, brulee and notes of grain, raw sugar and touches of fruit and caramel hang out in the background.

PALATE
Dill, rye and a sharp spice again dominate but this time bring notes of citrus zest, caramel, vanilla and a box of warm baking spices with them. Light fruit and a touch of astringency float lightly over the palate and blend into the background.

FINISH
Long and driven by notes of rye, spice, dill, vanilla, caramel and a slightly herbalness. Not like gin herbs, more earthy and leafy than that.

BALANCE, BODY & FEEL
Good balance with a medium body and a smooth mild texture that makes it very easy to drink.

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