Lagavulin – 16 Years Old

Lagavulin – 16 Years Old

This was always a bit of a go-to dram in bars before I really started getting in to whisky. I’ve never formally sat with it and explored the flavours, so thought I’d get hold of some and give it a going over. It’s the archetypal smoky scotch that you’ve got to try and either love or hate. I don’t know if I got a bad sample, but I really didn’t get on with it. It’s meant to be a big,…

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Four Roses Small Batch

Four Roses Small Batch

Massive thanks to Vin PF of No Nonsense Whisky for this sample. I actually tried it ages ago, but lost the notes, then found them again amidst a tidy up. Bottled at 45% ABV Nose: Classic bourbon nose. Vanilla, oak, brown sugar. Then some heather and mint as it develops. 7/10 Palate: Quite lively and prickly with chilli spice. Pepper too. Nuts, drying oak, but with sugary sweetness too. Well balanced. Some beeswax bitterness. 8/10 Finish: Long and warming with…

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Blind Tasting in association with No Nonsense Whisky

Blind Tasting in association with No Nonsense Whisky

Back towards the end of last year, I set Vin from No Nonsense whisky a blind tasting challenge. You can catch up on that over on Youtube. Suffice to say, he did a rather good job indeed. As a thank you, Vin has sent me my very own 5 dram challenge. As you may have gathered, I am not a Youtuber. I have a face for radio for starters, and I don’t have the smoothness of delivery needed for videos….

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Talisker – Port Ruighe

Talisker – Port Ruighe

A relatively new release from Talisker which has no age statement. It’s been finished in Port casks in an attempt to bring something unusual to the table. Read on to see my thoughts! Bottled at 45.8% ABV Nose: Peat, walnuts, I want to say port, but I can’t place it at all.A little oak. You really have to work hard to get anything actually. A little smoked mackerel late on. 3/10 Palate: Heavy oak, peppery spice, harsh and very dry….

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Kilchoman – Sanaig

Kilchoman – Sanaig

Kilchoman is the newest distillery on Islay. They also only produce relatively small batches of their products. These two things combined make their spirit quite desirable, and therefore quite expensive to buy. Vatted in bourbon and sherry casks, bottled at 46%ABV.   Nose: Peat smoke, followed by damp charcoal, treacle toffee, baked apples with cinnamon, traces of cordite. It’s November 5th in a bottle! Old leather bound books, rain on a hot day. So much going on. 10/10 Palate: Loads…

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Starward – New World Malt Whisky

Starward – New World Malt Whisky

Something a little different here. This is Australian whisky, made with Australian barley and matured almost exclusively in Australian Apera barrels. Apera is a fortified wine, similar to Sherry. It’s always good to see new places making whisky, and it’s a treat to try them, even if they are a bit strange. Spoiler: I found this a little weird. Bottled at 43% ABV. Nose: Marzipan, mint, candied peel, milk chocolate, nutmeg. Really unusual. 8/10 Palate: Very oaky, spicy and prickly,…

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Oban – 14 Years Old

Oban – 14 Years Old

It’s International Scotch Day, and that calls for a decent dram, or 2! Bottled at 43% ABV. Nose: Raisins, peat smoke but very gently, a little vanilla, lots of briny seawater, almond essence 6/10 Palate: Brine, pepper, oak, quite mellow and smooth, gentle peat 5/10 Finish: Dry and warming 5/10 Value for Money: We’re talking £46 a bottle here. A good price for 14 years of storage, but, honestly, I wouldn’t buy it at that price. 5/10 Looks: Understated and…

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Maker’s Mark

Maker’s Mark

A staple bourbon – one you’ll see in so many popular TV series and films from America. Interestingly this has no rye in the mash. It has been replaced with Red WInter Wheat. This is to reduce the burn you get from rye and make it a lot smoother to drink. Bottled at a decent 45% ABV. Nose: Vanilla, malt, stewed fruits, brown sugar, artificial strawberry flavouring – like you get in strawberry laces. 6/10 Palate: Medium spice. Sweet, sugary…

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Compass Box – Great King Street – Artist’s Blend

Compass Box – Great King Street – Artist’s Blend

This is a blended whisky from the folks at Compass Box. It’s the sort of blend that works neat and in cocktails, which in itself makes it quite a desirable bottle to have on the shelf. Compass Box are not shy in giving as much information as they legally can about the components of the whisky. In fact there is a graphic on their website which shows fairly accurate details of what’s there, along with the characteristics that malt gives…

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Sarah of I Love Whisky

Sarah of I Love Whisky

Well spin my nipple nuts and tune me to Classic FM. You wait a year for a Dram Dialogues post and then two pop up at once! This week we hear from the wonderful Sarah who not only curates her I Love Whisky blog, but also makes absolutely delightful whisky fudge. By the way, if you want to try some, now is the time as she’s going to be making a batch at the weekend. Full details available here. When…

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