Category Archives: USA

Westland single malt cask 397 for LMDW

Tasting: Westland single malt cask 397 for LMDW

Westland single malt cask 397 for LMDWDram data:
Distillery: Westland
Bottler: Official bottling
Distilled: –
Bottled: Summer 2016
Age: NAS
Limitation: 232 bottles
Casks: #397
Alcohol: 54,4%
unchillfiltered / uncoloured
Whiskybase link

It’s the 4th of July – Independence day in the US. Why not taste something different then? Like a single cask American single malt? Sounds good? Let’s go!

Tasting notes:
Colour:
 light maple syrup
The nose is quite different from your usual American whiskey – no wonder, it’s all malted barley. Quite a whiff of alcohol (with menthol) at the beginning. When it does fade a bit (it never goes away completely), the nose is met with loads of oak cask goodness – caramel, liquorice and maple syrup. A sneaky chunk of toffee has also found its way into the glass. There’s more lurking in the background behind the bold, big flavours. A whiff of cask smoke, fresh ginger and herbal cough syrup. Very oak-forward and only the freshness and alcoholic kick remain from the distillate, but every bit as enjoyable (if not more) as a high-quality bourbon of a similar, young age. With water, an additional component emerges – fresh, sweet flower petals! Interesting!   Continue reading

Baker's 7 yo 107 proof

Tasting: Baker’s 7 yo 107 proof

Baker's 7 yo 107 proof Dram data:
Distillery: Jim Beam
Bottler: Original Bottling
Distilled: –
Bottled: ca. 2014 (batch B-90-001)
Age: 7
Limitation: –
Casks: fresh American white oak barrels
Alcohol: 53,5%
Unchillfiltered; uncoloured
Whiskybase link

It’s been a while since I last reviewed a bourbon and this bottle is nearly empty, so let’s have a go at it before it’s empty!

Tasting notes:
Colour: 
mahogany
The nose opens on the rich side – and the first thing you notice is a note of acetone, something I only find acceptable in bourbons, if it is not too overwhelming, which it is not. Wood smoke (charred oak) with rich, toasted vanilla pods, dark chocolate (chocolate cake topping chocolate), almost burnt toffee, raisins, cracked almond seeds, roasted brazil nuts and fresh oak boards in the background. After a few minutes in, the acetone note has disappeared. A rich, flavourful bourbon nose in the middle of the transformation from young to old whiskey. Continue reading

Tasting: Jack Daniel’s Single Barrel Select 13-0919

Jack Daniel's Single Barrel Select 13-0919Dram data:
Distillery: Jack Daniel’s
Bottler: official bottling
Distilled: –
Bottled: 2013 (13-0919)
Age: NAS
Limitation: –
Casks: fresh barrel
Alcohol: 45%
filtered and uncoloured

Tasting notes:
Colour:
amber
With single malt prices going up, up, up, it’s well worth looking at malternatives. I consider this a malternative. Whether it’s an alternative remains to be seen – so let’s stick our nose in! Oh, hello there, acetone! It’s not officially considered an off-note, but I don’t like it – at least it’s only light and vanishes after about 15 minutes in the glass. Phew. A high-corn mashbill meets a fresh cask – strong vanilla flavours with sweet corn, caramel, molasses, burnt sugar and rye spices. Continue reading

24 drams till Christmas tasting #12: Vintage Four Roses Bourbon 6 yo

Vintage Four Roses Bourbon 6 yoDram data:
Distillery: Four Roses
Bottler: bottled in Austria
Distilled: –
Bottled: ?
Age: 6 years
Limitation: –
Casks: fresh oak casks
Alcohol: 86 Proof (43%)
unchillfiltered; natural colour
Whiskybase link (not the exact same bottle!)

This post is dedicated to grandparents who don’t really drink “hard stuff” and stash bottles they once received as gifts for decades in their cellar! Cheers!
Tasting notes:

Colour: amber
The nose opens with old vanilla pods – the kind you left lying around over night, all scraped out. Overall light, yet flavourful. Slightly alcoholic with an acetone tingle – a common occurrence in Bourbons, not influenced by decades in the bottle. It is, however, quite a bit more mellow than modern bourbons, soft and gentle, not as loud on the corn nor the cask influence and with gentle spices (cinnamon and cloves) not usually found in American oak.
Continue reading

Knob Creek Straight Rye

24 drams till Christmas (blind) tasting #6: Knob Creek Straight Rye

Knob Creek Straight RyeDram data:
Distillery: Jim Beam
Bottler: Original Bottling
Distilled: –
Bottled: ca. 2014
Age: NAS
Limitation: –
Casks: fresh barrels
Alcohol: 50%
unchillfiltered; natural colour (per law)
Whiskybase link

Blind tasting notes:
Colour:
honey
The nose, err… huh! Not a malt! There might be a malt component, but there are other grains (maize and quite possibly rye) in the mix. That’s most likely a bourbon*, though on can’t be too sure with so many countries making whiskies these days. So, what do we get? No acetone – that’s good! Just a spearmint type tingling in the nose. Sweet corn distillate, loads of vanilla – sweet vanilla, custard-ey. Chewy toffee with cream.

Continue reading

Rowan's Creek Straight Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey

Tasting: Rowan’s Creek Bourbon batch 13-19

Rowan's Creek Straight Kentucky Bourbon WhiskeyDram data:
Distillery: undisclosed, made for Kentucky Bourbon Distillers
Bottler: Original Bottling
Distilled: –
Bottled: 2013 / batch 13-19
Age: NAS
Limitation: –
Casks: Fresh barrels
Alcohol: 50,05%
uncoloured by law
Whiskybase link

Tasting notes:
Colour:
amber
The nose suggests a high-corn mashbill, lots of typical sweet corn notes dominate the nose, paired with loads of vanilla, roasted caramel, baked apples, sweet + sour cherries and assorted spices. A harmonic mixture between the spirit character, the sweet, the sour and the spicy notes, even though it’s not too complex. No acetone note, thank god. Continue reading

Tasting: Lost Spirits Distillery – Bohemian Bonfire French Oak

Lost Spirits Distillery Bohemian Bonfire

Dram data:
Distillery: Lost Spirits Distillery
Bottler: Original Bottling
Distilled: unknown
Bottled: 2014/2015
Age: NAS
Limitation: unknown (single cask)
Casks: single French oak cask (ex-wine)
Alcohol: 59%
unchillfiltered; uncoloured
Whiskybase link

Tasting notes:
Colour:
deep gold
The nose starts off with alcohol (no wonder at 59% ABV), smoke and a complex multitude of aromas in the background. Let’s stay with the smoke for a bit: It’s unlike anything I’ve ever come across, completely different from what you’re used to in peated Scotches. Continue reading