Country: The Netherlands
Type: Single Malt Whisky
Age: 5 Years
ABV: 40 %
Colour: Dark Gold
Nose: Quite different from your average Scotch Single Malt. In terms of style this Millstone is closer to some of its "cousins" from Germany, Switzerland and Austria, just to name a few. My first impressions include Oat Porridge with Butter and Milk, Light Oak, Puff Pastry filled with Apricot Marmalade, Custard and Coffee Milk Shake. I also find hints of Perfume, Varnish, Coconut Milk and Orange. It developed well given its young age but also managed to hold the Fruity, Cereals and Dairy-like Distillery character.
Palate: Here it's much more obvious that we are dealing with a young Whisky. The delivery is Sweet and slightly Thin and Watery. On the Palate the Millstone 5 years is relatively simple with Vanilla, Orange, Honey, light Oak, light Pepper and Coconut Milk.
Finish: Rather Short and mainly Sweet with Butter, Pastry, Milk, Coconut Milk, light Wood, light Custard and light Pepper. Dry towards the end. The Butter returns and stays with you for a while.
I would advise against adding Water to this Millstone 5 years.
Nose: 21 - Taste: 20.5 - Finish: 20.5 - Overall: 20.5
Part of the " Border" in Baarle Nassau
General Remarks: The Zuidam Distillery was founded in 1974 by Fred van Zuidam and his wife Helene and is currently run by their sons Patrick and Gilbert. It is located in Baarle-Nassau on the Dutch-Belgian border and is the only Distillery in The Netherlands that ferments, distills, ages and bottles at its own premises. Next to Malt Whiskies, Zuidam also produces Rye Whisky, Gin, Rum, Genever and Liqueurs. The name Millstone derives from the Windmills that are used by Zuidam to mill the Malted Barley. The Millstone 5 Years is Double-Distilled and aged in a mix of New American White Oak and Refill Ex-Bourbon. Zuidam uses small Oak Casks and their storage in Warm and Dry Warehouses will guarantee a quicker maturation of the Whisky but also leads to a higher Angel Share of around 5% per year! The 200 ml bottle (Bottle # 151 out of Cask # 218) I am tasting today was distilled on the 28th of April 2008 and was bottled on the 14th of May 2013. The Millstone 5 Years is not cheap at between 60 and 90 US Dollars. Although I recognise that the packaging is very nice and professional!
Drinking Experience Neat: Good
Conclusion: Dutch Whisky differs from Scotch Whisky. Therefore it should be judged on its own merits. This Millstone 5 years is produced with eye for detail, both in the production process as well as in the presentation. The Nose is the best part of this Single Malt with Fruit, Pastry and Dairy. On the Palate the 5 years is without great depth and a bit on the Thin side. I'm very curious to find out if the Millstone improves with additional Cask Time. During 2014 I will certainly taste some of the other expressions of the Zuidam Distillery. I'm already looking forward to that as I certainly believe this is a distillery with a bright future!