Timorous Beastie Review

“Modest Mouse”

Country: Scotland 
Region: Western Highlands
Brand: Timorous Beastie (Small Batch)
Bottled by/for: Douglas Laing, Glasgow
Type: Blended Malt Whisky
Age: NAS 
ABV: 46.8%

Colour: White Wine (Natural Colour)

Nose: There were certainly some Refill Ex-Sherry casks used in the maturation of the Malts used for this Blend. I even get a distant hint of Sulphur but it's not strong enough to spoil the Nosing Fun. The Nose reminds me a bit of the Bell's Blended Whisky so it could well be that a reasonable amount of Blair Athol was used for the Timorous Beastie. There's not a lot going on in this Department I'm afraid. I get Sugared Cereals, Toast and Margarine, Heather Honey, Dried Fruits, Berries, Unripe Apple, White Wine, Citrus, Toffee, Caramel, Straw, Refill Oak, a little Pepper and Salt and traces of Nuts and Dusty Leather. It's all a bit Young and Edgy and the Alcohol is not fully integrated.

Palate: Quite Sweet and a bit Thin despite the good ABV. Some Spice and a light Bitterness towards the end. I find Sweet Cereals, Demerara Sugar, light Vanilla, Heather Honey, Syrup, Dried Fruits and Nuts, slightly Sour Green Apples, Oak, Citrus Peel, Chilli Pepper, Salt, Ginger, Cinnamon, light Aniseed, light Licorice and hints of Dairy and Leather. The Alcohol is ever present.  

Finish: Middle-Long, Bitter-Sweet, Herbal and Spicy with Sweet Barley, Vanilla, Toffee, Dried Fruits and Nuts, Sugared Orange Peel, Dried Herbs, Oak, Chilli Pepper, Cinnamon, Ginger Ale, Menthol and hints of Aniseed and Licorice.

The Timorous Beastie does not improve with added Water. 

Rating: 81.5

Nose: 20.5 - Taste: 20.5 - Finish: 20 - Overall: 20.5

General Remarks: The name of this Blended Malt was inspired by a Mouse that appeared in a poem called "To a Mouse" by Robert Burns. In the poem, the Mouse is a tiny timid creature but in reality, this Blend is supposed to be the opposite. It's part of a series of four called Remarkable Regional Malts that covers the Highlands (Timorous Beastie), Speyside (Scallywag), Islay (Big Peat) and the Islands (Rock Oyster). Timorous Beastie is not Chill-Filtered and contains Single Malt from Glengoyne, Dalmore, Blair Athol, Glen Garioch and possibly other distilleries. It probably matured in a mix of Refill Ex-Bourbon and Refill Ex-Sherry casks. It sells at an average 55 US Dollars (November 2015).

Drinking Experience Neat: Okay/Good 

Conclusion: The Timorous Beastie is certainly not a timid Blend. And it does show some Highland characteristics. It's Sweet but the Spices and Herbs make sure there is sufficient balance. On the other hand there's a Young, Edgy and almost "Grainy" feel to this Blend and the Alcohol is very present. These issues prevent me from giving the Timorous Beastie a higher score. The packaging and presentation are nicely done and the Price/Quality ratio is not too bad. But I would advise you to try a sample first before considering buying a full bottle. Better safe than sorry! 

Jan van den Ende                                                             November 16, 2015

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