Friday, 28 October 2016

9 Halloween movies & matching whiskies

Halloween is approaching fast. In Belgium it's a less common celebration on 31 October.  20 years ago no one had even heard of it and it is still struggling to set foot on land (although shops are packed with costumes and other wannabe creepy stuff). Very few people sent out their kids dressed as friendly ghosts, pirates or zombified Justin Biebers after dark.

Sunday, 23 October 2016

Port Charlotte Islay Barley 2008

A Tasty Dram Whisky Blog tasting notes

Port Charlotte isn't an actual distillery but one of the brands of Bruichladdich Distillery next to its ultrapeated brother Octomore and the unpeated malts from Bruichladdich. However there was a distillery in the village of Port Charlotte from 1829 till 1929. Two warehouses still exist today and are used by Bruichladdich to mature the peated Port Charlotte spirit. Tonight I'm exploring the Port Charlotte Islay Barley 2008, an expression distilled from barley solely grown on Islay.

Wednesday, 19 October 2016

News: Batch Strength blended malts

Independent bottler Wemyss Malts is releasing their well known blended malts at a higher ABV. The Spice King, The Hive and Peat Chimney are all getting a small batch brother bottled at +50% ABV. A move that  lots of serious whisky lovers will applaud. The  new range of blended malts, that have been blended from a selection of casks of single malt whiskies from over 10 Scottish distilleries, each utilising signature malts to define their flavour and aroma as the whisky names suggests.

Monday, 17 October 2016

News: Jim Murray's Whisky Bible 2017

So, the notorious Big Jim has made its annual list of whisky awards public. Without further ado, here's the grand winner... Booker’s Rye 13 Year Old. A 13yo cask strength rye whiskey distilled by Booker Noe. Probably one of the last whiskeys the late Jim Beam master distiller made before  passing away in 2004. The whiskey is rarely spotted across Europe, since it's a U.S. only thing. And a pricey one too. Price varies around $300-$350. How the auctions will learn to love this one even more in the next few days and weeks!

Sunday, 16 October 2016

Douglas Laing Old Particular Aberlour 1992

Douglas Laing Old Particular Aberlour 1992
Picture: Douglas Laing

Tonight I'm sitting in front of an Old Particular Aberlour 1992. Another distillery that can be struck off the list of 'untasted ones'.

Aberlour (in Gaelic Obar Lobhair) lies near the meeting place of the Lour burn, a stream in plain English, and the river Spey. The first Aberlour distillery was founded by James Gordon and Peter Weir in 1826. A year later Peter Weir decided to withdraw and James Gordon ran the business alone until a fire devastated most of the distillery in 1879. The new distillery as well as most of the machinery was designed and built by James Fleming, son of a local farmer in 1879.

Wednesday, 12 October 2016

News: Octomore Meleager

Is Bruichladdich planning a lower ABV version of its fabled Octomore single malt? Or just a prank to rouse curousity? The 46% ABV goes a bit against their 50% ABV policy so this might be only a test version of the label. And there's nog age statement. Again something that doesn't fit their transparency policy. The whisky is a vatting of American & French (ex-Ch√Ęteau d'Yquem?) casks.

Some Laddiefans claim this could be a private cask of Mark Reynier, the former CEO of Bruichladdich. That would explain the MBRPT1 code on the label: MBR (MARK BARTHOLOMEW REYNIER) PT (Private). Apparently the first Octomores were also bottled at 46% and a fairly modest ppm - in Octomore terms - of 80.5ppm.

I discovered this recent entry from them in the Colas Online database. We'll see if it really hits the market.

Identity Card

  • Octomore  Meleager

  • Limited edition? (Bottle... of ...)

  • Alcohol: 46% ABV

  • Vatting of American & French Oak


Octomore Meleager

Entries from the TTB Public Registry (Alcohol and Tobacco Tax & Trade Bureau) are a fairly reliable source for upcoming new whiskies. Although not all entries make it to the market. There’s always the possibility a brand decides not to launch a whisky, even if the label has been approved. Until the distillery sends out a press release, this whisky should be considered a rumour…

Sunday, 9 October 2016

Chapter 7 Strathmill 1991

A Tasty Dram Whisky Blog tasting notes

I didn't have the time to properly sit down with a whisky thsi weekend so I'm digging into my archive of tasting notes. I re-discovered this Chapter 7 Strathmill 1991. The whisky matured for 24 years in a fino sherry cask.

The late victorian Strathmill distillery once came to life as a corn mill. Officially it was founded in 1891 under the name of Glenisla-Glenlivet. It referred to the nearby river, the Isla, and the long valley, Glenlivet. Four years later the distillery was sold to gin producers W&A Gilbey who gave the distillery its present name: Strathmill.

Sunday, 2 October 2016

Douglas Laing Old Particular Glenburgie 1997

A Tasty Dram Whisky Blog tasting notes

I'm venturing into Douglas Laing's territory again. On the table stands an Old Particular Glenburgie 1997. A glorious Speyside single cask, 18 years old and bottled at the standard 48.8% ABV for whiskies under 21 in the Old Particular range.

Glenburgie saw the light of day as the Kilnflat Distillery in 1810.  Production only started 19 years (!) later. In 1870 the story of Kilnflat was over. When it was reopened in 1878, the owners baptised the distillery Glenburgie-Glenlivet, a suffix that has been (ab)used by many distilleries near the river Spey.