Tag Archives: Spirits

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Tasting IWS Single Cask Single Pot Still 17yo

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The Whiskey:
Back in April, Irish Distillers Ltd. invited the Irish Whiskey Society (IWS) to a trip around the Fox and Geese Bottling facility and followed this up an evening in the Old Jameson Distillery in Bow Street, Dublin. There they were given the opportunity to sample 3 different casks, 2 aged for 15 years and one aged for 17 years…. those present then voted to select their favourite and by a margin of 2 to 1, Cask number 1038 was deemed the winner, the 17 year old cask.

This cask was then purchased by the IWS and was offered exclusively to their members as the first exclusive bottling from the Irish Whiskey Society. The whiskey was bottled at Cask Strength so it will be supplied at 55.2%. This is extremely limited in supply (204 bottles only) and is no doubt one to savour over a long period of time and offer only a small sample to the closest of friends!

On the eye:
Very clear, nice golden colour.

On the nose:
It’s clean and pronounced, with aromas of caramel, banana, ripe black fruit, vanilla and coconut milk.

On the mouth:
An explosion of flavours: floral, fruity, creamy. Long finishing, with a hint of spices and herbs. The water softened the alcohol on the nose and the spicy of the palate.. Outstanding!

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Tasting Scottish Highland Whiskies

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These whiskies were tasted during an Irish Whiskey Society meeting, where different whiskies and whiskeys are tasted every month.

Scotland is devided in 5 whisky regions: Highlands, Lowland, Islay, Speyside, and recently the re-instated Campbeltown. This month’s taste covered some Scottish Highland distilleries.

Here is my notes, taken during the tasting, on 25/10/12:

10yo – 40% – 40€

Malted barley and cereal in the nose.
A touch of fruit peels and raisins.
There is oaken sweetness and richness
in the palate, with a slightly menthol note,
and a medium-length finish.

14yo – 43% – 59€

Sweet potatoes and malted barley on
the nose, with some aniseed hints.
On the palate there’s vanilla and
faintly sherries. Mineral texture, if not
creamy, with a nicely long finishing.
The water didn’t add much on it.

12yo – 40% – 42€

On the nose, a saline sensation
after the fruitness. Easy drinking
sweet’n’dry on the palate. A pleasant finishing,
leaving a subtle honeyed aroma and neutral oak barrel.
Not a complex dram, though.

15yo – 43% – 45€
Light gold coloured,
and sweet malt on the nose,
with honey and hints of wood.
Medium body, honey
and salty palate, with hints of vanilla,
butter and smoke. Hint of salt and honey
with a decent finishing.

14yo – 46% – 46€

Light brown-deep yellow colour,
salty, spicy and fruity on the nose,
lingering prune and sweet dried fruit.
Sweet, citrus and silky splendid long finishing.

Old Pulteney
17yo – 46%

Fresh on the nose with fruits and dried fruits
with some salted hints. Sweet on the palate,
with some citrus peels and liquorice. Notes of
malted barley and cereal sweetness.
Long finish brings menthol and silky oak.

Glenglassaugh Revival
6yo – 46% – 48€

This one was my favourite! Aged on Oloroso barrels,
it’s sweet with notes of honey and barley malt on the nose.
Ripe plums, raisins and orange peel on the palate,
with walnuts, spices, sherry and caramel.
A rounded and creamy finishing.

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Tasting CR&F Aguardente Velha Reserva

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Another one from my trip to Portugal. Almost impossible, on holidays, don’t give yourself some treating! After those marvellous diners, divine wines and lovely desserts, the only things you need is a good expresso and a taste of a digestif! As I like to go beyond the standards, I surprisingly found this CR&F in a little restaurant in Lagoa. After having one at that night, I had to buy a bottle and do a proper tasting…

This Reserva brandy is made by Carvalho, Ribeiro & Ferreira (CR&F), in Vila Nova de Gaia, Portugal, the same place were Porto wines are produced. The first thing that comes to your attention is the bottle, a unique design and semi-handmade production which gives its own distinctive identity.

Very clear ob the appearance and showing a beautiful medium-amber colour, after allowing the alcohol aerate a little bit, the clean aromas of nuts, almonds, nectarines are quite pronounced. In the palate it reiterates the nuts, opening to hazelnuts and a medicine-like taste which could recall liquorice and juniper, in a very dry sensation, medium body and length.

A very good brandy aged for years in national oak barrels, it has soft flavours and rich and complex aromas. A well balanced and potent brandy!


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