Monthly Archives: September 2013

Dalmore 12 Year Old

Distillery: Dalmore
Region: Highland
Age: 12
Chill-filtered: ?
Strength: 40%
Batch No.: N/A
Colour: Amber
Nose: Sherry, spicy, oak
Taste: Thin, light, earthy
Finish: Short, dry
Rating: 4/10
Dalmore 12 year old

The Dalmore 12yo is matured in American white oak, ex-bourbon casks for 9 years, before a quarter of it is separated and placed into 30yo oloroso sherry casks, or so it says on the box. This makes for an interesting, reasonably complex nose, but without being too rich or complex. There is a subtle sherry sweetness present on the nose, nothing to powerful though, it is a good balance between that, the spiciness and the earthy, oaky notes; maybe just a little too much on the oak and earthiness for me, slightly overpowers the other aromas.

Surprisingly thin and light for a sherry cask, most probably because only a quarter is placed into the sherry cask. You do get some of the complexities coming through though, with the oak and earthy flavours coming through towards the end of the palate. There is not really any sweetness that comes through which is usually commonplace in sherry casks, it does in fact lead to quite a dry and short finish.

For me the earthy and oaky notes that are present throughout let it down, they are just a little too overpowering and I find myself concentrating on those aromas and flavours, more than the others that are hidden in there. At around £38, I would not personally purchase another bottle, it is overpriced for what you get in my eyes. Packaging is impressive though.

Glenallachie 15 year old

Distillery: Glenallachie
Region: Speyside
Age: 15
Chill-filtered: No
Strength: 58%
Batch No.: GA 15 001
Colour: Copper
Nose: Rich, sherry
Taste: Rich, sweet and powerful
Finish: Long, warm, spicy and dry
Rating: 9/10
Glenallachie 15 year old

Beautiful colour to this one, rich, dark copper from the first-fill sherry cask. Masses of flavour comes through as soon as you take that first sip, and there is no doubt that it cask strength either. A little water is needed for this one that for sure. With the addition of the water the nose becomes a little lighter and easier to pick out the aromas. Taste is not affected much by a little water, you have to dilute it quite a bit for that, it has to be the most powerful whisky I have tasted. Even heavily diluted though you still get the warm and spicy finish, just a little less dry.

I’ve had this one for a number of years now and to be honest, I’m not sure if you can get it anymore, I got it from The Glenlivet distillery so maybe it is still available there. From memory it was around £35 for a 50cl and I have to say, it’s worth every penny.

St. George’s Chapter 11

Distillery: St. George’s
Name: Chapter 11
Region: Norfolk
Age: Minimum 3 years
Chill-filtered: No
Strength: 46%
Batch No.: 639, 640, 641, 642
Colour: Light
Nose: Lightly peaty, light fruits, crisp
Taste: Lightly peaty, light, crisp, clean
Finish: Short, dry
Rating: 6/10
St George's Chapter 11

Well I had idea what to expect of the Chapter 11 from St. George’s distillery, branded as The English Whisky Co. After all it is a very young whisky with the statement made of a minimum of 3 years old, no maximum age stated though. Being so young and coming from ex American Bourbon casks, it is very light in colour as you may expect. St. George’s have the peated and non-peated range, Chapter 11 falls into their peated range, which is accomplished by the use of heavily smoked barley.

It is nice to see that the whiskies are released at a healthy 46%, non chill-filtered and at natural colour, no attempts to cover the youth of the whisky. Speaking of which, surprise would be a good description of my first impression; I have to be honest I was expecting something a little on the rough side, but was pleasantly surprised to find that it is in fact fairly smooth, it even carries the 46% very well, only really noticeable on the finish.

It is not a complex whisky but it is a very light, crisp and easy drinking one that would be good for cleaning the palate after a greasy meal such as a Chinese. The addition of a small amount of water opens the nose up a little, bringing out those light fruity notes, making it a little sweeter on the nose. The palate is not really affected by the water, nor is the finish apart from smoothing it a little. It is sold as heavily peated / smokey; as a fan of heavily peaty whiskies I would not say heavy, peaty yes, so if you really dislike peaty whiskies then it is probably not for you, but don’t expect a Laphroaig or Ardbeg.

The Chapter 11 was not what I would class as cheap for such a young whisky, costing £41, so if you are on a budget then there are better out there. The reason I bought a bottle though was to help to support the up and coming English whisky industry. It can’t be an easy task starting a new distillery and competing against the big boys, so they need all the help they can get. Expensive yes, I would say something around the £30 mark would get a lot more people trying it, but I see why they price it as they do, you still get a very nice whisky at the end of the day.

Notes

Distilled by David Fitt
Cask Type ASB (if anyone knows what this means please let me know)
Distilled March 2008
Bottled November 2011

Fettercairn Fasque

Distillery: Fettercairn
Name: Fasque
Region: Highland
Age: N/A
Chill-filtered: ?
Strength: 42%
Batch No.:
Colour: Dark Amber
Nose: Pleasant, slight fruitiness
Taste: Well-rounded, rich, creamy, some sweetness
Finish: Spice, medium length
Rating: 6/10
Fettercairn Fasque

Fettercairn is not a distillery I am really familiar with, so I did not know what to expect from the Fasque, the introductory whisky in their range from what I can gather. At first I was unsure, the nose is pleasant enough but nothing really jumps out, other than a slight fruitiness once it has been left a little while, and had chance to oxygenate. The palate however was a different story and recovered it from the realms of the low score. It’s smooth, which is aided by the slight creaminess, well-balanced with some richer flavours coming through, and a slight sweetness towards the end moving onto a little spice on the finish, that lasts just long enough.

I was turned around with this one, an enjoyable dram that will be a good addition to the winter, drinking whisky collection. I managed to get this on offer at £25, though it is usually about £30 I think, but it is still worth the money.

Talisker 10 Year Old

Distillery: Talisker
Region: Island
Age: 10
Chill-filtered: ?
Strength: 45.8%
Batch No.: N/A
Colour: Golden
Nose: Light, fruity
Taste: Light, creamy, fresh, fruity, slight sweetness
Finish: Creamy, short, but with lasting warmth
Rating: 6/10
Talisker 10yo

Talisker 10yo

I hear a lot of people saying that Talisker 10yo is a great starter whisky for those wanting to get into single malts. Now it has been a few years since I last tasted it so couldn’t really remember, I wanted to check for myself, and I have to say, I agree. The 10 year old is a very pleasant dram indeed, well balanced with just enough flavour yet keeping it light enough to be an easy drinker, even an 45.8%. There is a sweetness there but not overpowering, it actually works really well with the creaminess of it.

Jura Superstition & Diurachs’ Own

Superstition

Distillery: Jura
Region: Islay
Age: N/A
Chill-filtered: ?
Strength: 43%
Batch No.: N/A
Colour: Amber
Nose: Light, coastal hints, slight sweetness
Taste: Light, fresh, lightly peated, coastal
Finish: Light, medium length, slightly dry
Rating: 6/10
Jura Superstition

Quite accurately described as ‘delicate/light peated’ on the boxes’ 2×2 matrix, this is a very easy drinking dram, fantastic on a hot summer day. It is light and refreshing with slight coastal (sea air, saltiness) tones on the nose but with a little sweetness hidden in there also. This continues onto both the palate and the finish but with the addition of a slight peatiness coming through.Although it is a little stronger than normal at 43%, the addition of water is not necessary due to the already light nature of the drink. The strength is not over powering and the addition of water does loose some of the qualities of the whisky. If you like your lightly peated whiskies or if you want a good introduction into peated whiskies then this is a fantastic choice.

Diurachs’ Own

Distillery: Jura
Region: Islay
Age: 16
Chill-filtered: ?
Strength: 40%
Batch No.: N/A
Colour: Amber
Nose: Rich but crisp, coastal hints
Taste: Well rounded, slight sweetness, coastal
Finish: Long, coastal, slightly dry
Rating: 6/10
Jura Diurachs' Own
Diurachs is the Gaelic name for the people of Jura and the whisky is described as ‘rich, full-bodied and unpeated’ on the boxes’ new matrix, now a 5 section circle due to the addition of Elixir. It has a deeper, more intense nose it than the Superstition yet manages to keep a crispness to it at the same time, a little unusual but it works. The coastal tones are evident throughout helping to keep it refreshing, which is nice change for a rich whisky. It makes it a whisky that can still be enjoyed on a warm day, when I usually expect this type to be more of a winter warmer.