Showing posts with label 8 Years. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 8 Years. Show all posts

Amrut Greedy Angels Batch # 2 Review



“One Greedy Angel Does Not Make an Indian Summer”

Whisky Review # 845

Country: India
Region: Bangalore
Brand: Amrut Greedy Angels Batch # 02 - Chairman's Reserve
Type: Indian Single Malt Whisky
Age: 8 Years - Bottled in June 2017
Alcohol By Volume (ABV): 50%
Maturation: Ex-Bourbon Casks
Chill Filtration: No
Average Price: Around US$ 270 (December 2019)
Price/Quality Ratio: 👎Way too expensive for what it offers.
Buying Advice: 😐 Lots of people seem to love it. I think it's okay!

Colour: Copper with shades of Orange (Natural Colour)

Nose:

Be sure to give this Amrut enough time in the glass before Nosing. The Alcohol is slightly Sharp at first. It smells quite mature for an 8 Year old but there's a little edge there as well. Did this Amrut perhaps mature in refill casks? Judging by the colour this seems hardly unlikely unless the casks were heavily charred. In any case this edgy note diminishes with time so be patient here! On the Nose this Amrut is mainly Sweet and Fruity with a few Dusty, Meaty & Tart notes that provide balance. The influence of the peated Barley is very limited.

Main Aromas:

Malted Barley, Butter Kekse (German Butter Biscuits), Yeast, Mixed Dried Fruit (Raisins, Sultanas, Apricots, Plums), Tropical Fruitcake prepared with Mango, Banana, Pineapple and Papaya, Dusty Charred Oak, Orange and Milk-Hazelnut Chocolate.

Supportive Aroma Accents:

Honey, Buttered Toast, Vanilla, Butterscotch, Straw, Mandarin, Pancakes with Golden Syrup, Lemon, Meat on the BBQ, Wet Paper, Tobacco, Gooseberries,  Ginger and Varnish.


Palate:

Bitter-Sweet and quite Dry. The Alcohol is quite present and not fully integrated. The Oak is much more noticeable as well. There's certainly a lot going on but to me it feels like an orchestra without a conductor.

Main Flavours:

Toasted and Malted Barley, Brown Sugar, Yeast, Dried Fruit (Sultanas, Apricots and Plums), Cherry-Flavoured Cough Syrup, Dusty Charred Oak, Fresh Ginger, 
Tropical Fruitcake prepared with Papaya, Mango, Pineapple & Banana, Nutmeg and Cardamom.

Supportive Flavour Accents:

Buttered Toast, Honey, Vanilla, Caramel, Butterscotch, Herbal Tea, Licorice, Hazelnut-Milk Chocolate, Orange, Grapefruit, Tobacco and Pepper.

Finish:

Middle-Long, Bitter-Sweet and a little on the Hot side. Quite Dry in the end. The Oak influence is quite significant by now. It doesn't really invite me to have another sip. I find Malted and Toasted Barley, Brown Sugar, Caramel, Dusty Charred Oak, Forrest Floor, Charred Pineapple, Banana, Apple, Mango, Cherry-Flavoured Cough Syrup, Hazelnut-Milk Chocolate, Tobacco, Pepper, Cardamon, Nutmeg, Cloves and Menthol.

Drinking Advice:

I added a little Water and that helps to calm down the Alcohol. It does not really change the general profile but it's much more comfortable this way. I would advise you to add a few drops in this case.

Rating: 84

Nose: 21.5 - Taste: 21 - Finish: 20.5 - Overall: 21

Drinking Experience Neat: Okay/Good

Conclusion:

The Amrut distillery is located in Kumbalgodu, just outside Bangalore. It started producing Whisky in the Mid-80's but the first Amrut Single Malt was released in 2004. The Greedy Angels I'm reviewing today was launched in 2013. At that time it was the oldest Amrut Malt. In the meantime 10 & 12 year expressions of Greedy Angels have been released as well. These are remarkable ages given the fact that the annual evaporation in India is huge (12%) on account of the hot & humid climate. Greedy Angels can't be cheap therefore. Greedy Angels B. 2 is made with unpeated Indian Malt and a little peated Scotch Barley.

I wanted to love this Amrut as many people whom I know were enthusiastic about this Indian Single Malt. It's not bad for sure but I can't really get into this Greedy Angels and I'm not sure why. For one the ABV seems to high for this Spirit. Adding Water helps here but does not solve my main problems with this Amrut. Even with added Water there remains a funny kind of Sharpness that I usually find with blended Scotch, matured in lack luster refill Wood. That can't be the case here but I am truly puzzled what causes this. The second and more important issue is the fact that, while there are lots of Aroma and Flavour impressions, they do not seem to form a cohesive collective. It's a bit messy in my opinion. As a result of the high Angel's Share this Indian Single Malt is quite expensive. Considering the above you won't see me buy a full bottle!

Cheers!

Jan van den Ende                                                              December 10, 2019

Related image

Ledaig 2005 (Chester Whisky & Liqueur) Review


“Mull Meets Islay”

Country: Scotland
Region: Highland - Island - Mull 
Brand: Ledaig 2005 
Type: Single Malt
Age: 8 Years
ABV: 52.7%
Chill-Filtration: No
Whisky Review # 546

Colour: Very Pale White Wine (Natural Colour)

Nose: Young, Fruity & quite Peaty. There's still a New Make Spirit feel to this Ledaig and it smells very similar to young Islay whisky from the Southern part of the island. I find Toasted Cereals, Tarmac, Soot, Cold Smoke, Rubber, Wet Clay, Salt, slightly Burnt Toast, Black Olives, Wet Stone, Dried Herbs, Lemon, Grapefruit Juice, light Licorice, light Aniseed, Sour Apples and a touch of Vanilla. The main Aromas are Peat, Toasted Cereals, Soot, Sour Fruit and Salt. It goes without saying that the Alcohol is quite noticeable. It's still a relatively Young Spirit and thus the Nose is not very complex. Still, it's not unpleasant. 

Taste: Fruity and surprisingly Creamy for a Whisky of this age. The Alcohol is quite present of course. I find Wet Clay, Tar, Soot, Ashes, Cold Smoke, Brine, Salted Fish, Grass, Toasted Barley, Lemon, Grapefruit Juice, Pear, slightly Sour Apples, Pepper, Soy Sauce and Ginger. It's a little Soapy from time to time. 

Finish: Quite Long with Wet Clay, Cold Smoke, Soot, Brine, Ashes, Salted Fish, Dried Herbs, Grass, Sweet Barley, Pepper, Ginger, Lemon, Grapefruit Juice, Pear, slightly Sour Apples and Vodka.

I added a few drops of Water and on the Nose Wet Clay and Salted Fish move to the front. On the Palate the Fruit is enhanced and the New Make Spirit feel is quite present. The Finish gets more Pepper and Licorice but also becomes a little Bitter. I prefer it neat but you can carefully experiment with a few drops.  

Rating: 85

Nose: 21.5 - Taste: 21 - Finish: 21 - Overall: 21.5

Picture Credit: The Whisky Cask

General Remarks: The Tobermory Distillery is located on the Hebridean Island of Mull. It was formerly named Ledaig and was founded in 1798 by John Sinclair. Nowadays it is owned by the Distell Group that bought Burn Stewart Distillers in 2013. The Distillery produces unpeated Malt under the name Tobermory and peated Malt under the old Distillery name Ledaig. The whisky is mainly used in blends like Black Bottle and Scottish Leader. The Ledaig we are tasting today was distilled in 2005 and matured in an Ex-Bourbon Hogshead. It was bottled at Cask Strength by Independent bottler Chester Whisky & Liqueur Company Ltd, Chester (UK) in 2013. Unfortunately, this company closed its doors in the same year. It costs between 60 and 85 US Dollars but it will be very difficult to find as only 238 bottles went to the market (June 2016).

Drinking Experience Neat: Good 

Conclusion: Before I started Nosing I wasn't expecting a lot to be honest. Young peated whiskies tend to be a little Sharp and Monotonous. But I was pleasantly surprised by this Ledaig expression. It's a young Spirit of course and you can't ignore the Alcohol (Vodka) as it's all over the place. But there's something very interesting going on here. It's like the Whisky tells you "This is the way I am mate, take it or leave it". And I must say that it works for me. You should not buy this Ledaig if you're only starting to get familiar with peated Whisky. But if you adore young Ardbeg or Laphroaig you might want to give this a try. It won't be easy to find but you won't regret the effort!  

Jan van den Ende                                                                      June 17, 2016

Millstone 100 Rye Review



“We're Almost There”

Country: The Netherlands
Brand: Millstone 100 Rye
Type: Small Pot Still Rye Whisky 
Age: 8 Years
ABV: 50 %

Colour: Chestnut

Nose: The Alcohol is strong so you'll have to nose your way around it. There is quite a bit going on here. I find Sour Rye-Bread, Chocolate-Milk (Chocomel), Oak in the form of Pencil Shavings, Butterscotch, Vanilla, Brown Sugar, Varnish, 
Menthol, Grass, Aniseed, Citrus Peel, Mashed Bananas and Peach Preserves. Not many people would recognise this as a Dutch Whisky in a Blind Tasting and for the time being that's a compliment!

Palate: Quite Strong and Spicy Delivery with Rye Bread, Caramel, Vanilla, Mint, Lemon, Ginger, Brown Sugar, Pepper, Cinnamon, New Oak and Varnish.

Finish: Middle Long and Spicy with New Oak, slightly Bitter Almonds, Ginger Ale, Mint, Pepper, Eucalyptus, Cinnamon, Varnish and Buttered Toast.

I added a bit of Water but that does not improve this Millstone 100 Rye. 

Rating: 83.5

Nose: 21.5 - Taste: 20.5 - Finish: 20.5 - Overall: 21 

New Pot Stills at Zuidam Distillery

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 Rye Whisky, Zuidam also produces Malt Whisky, Gin, Rum, Genever and Liqueurs. The name Millstone derives from the Windmills that are used by Zuidam to mill the Malted Barley. The sample that I'm tasting today does not mention any specific data but I'm pretty sure it was bottled in 2013. The 100 stands for 100% Rye, maturation of a 100 Months in 100% new American Oak Casks and bottling at 100 Proof. It's not cheap at around 70 US Dollars.

Drinking Experience Neat: Good 

Conclusion: First of all I would like to congratulate Zuidam on this Rye Whisky as it's one of the very few made outside the USA. And on the Nose it can most certainly compete with its American brothers. On the Palate and in the Finish however I'm not too fond of the Young Oak and Varnish Tones. Perhaps eight years in New American Oak is a bit too much. I wonder what would happen if you would mature this Spirit in a Mix of New - and Refill American Oak. In any case, the Millstone 100 Rye is a good, albeit quite expensive Dutch product. And I'm pretty sure that future Rye expressions will be even better. So I will end with a song that Andy Williams sang a long time ago: "We're Almost There" 

Jan van den Ende                                                          November 5, 2014 

 Rye 

Millstone 8 Years Review


The Bottle I have is similar but does not mention "American Oak" on the Label!

“The Oaky Dutchman”

Country: The Netherlands
Brand: Millstone 
Type: Single Pot Still Malt Whisky 
Age: 8 Years
ABV: 43 %
Date: 11/06/2014

Colour: Chestnut. Quite dark for its 8 years.

Nose: Sweet with a clear Virgin Oak influence. I find Barley, lightly Charred Oak, New White Wood Furniture, light Honey, Vanilla, Apricot Marmalade, Toffee, Butterscotch, light Varnish, Orange and Nut Shells. I do not get the clear Dairy tones that I found in the 5 Years Expression. The three years extra in the Cask do make a difference. The Nose is okay but not overly exciting.

Palate: Toffee, Caramel and Sweet Syrup at first but the Oak takes control quickly. I also find Cereals, light Honey, light Orange, light Coconut Milk and light Spices.

Finish: Middle-Long and mainly Sweet with Syrup, Custard, Milky Way, slightly Charred Oak, Cereals, Citrus, Nuts and a sprinkle of White Pepper.

I added a bit of Water and on the Nose the Wood retreats and makes room for Malt, Honey and Dried Apricots. Palate and Finish do no benefit from the added Water.

Rating: 81.5

Nose: 21 - Taste: 20  - Finish: 20 - Overall: 20.5


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 8 Years I'm tasting today was Double-Distilled and likely aged in a mix of New American White Oak and Refill Ex-Bourbon Casks. It was distilled in February 1995 and bottled in August 2012. 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 Millstone 8 year was sold at around 90 US Dollars. Apparently, the 8 Years isn't part of the current Millstone line-up anymore.

Drinking Experience Neat: Okay/Good 

Conclusion: After having tasted Millstone's 5 - and 8 Years Expressions, I can safely say that the use of small casks really speeds up the maturation process. After "only" 8 years in the cask, this Dutch Spirit has the colour and the wood influence that you would normally expect of a much older whisky. I must admit I liked the 5 years a tad better as the Distillery Character had more chance to present itself. In the 8 year old I find the Oak influence a bit too strong, more so on the Palate than on the Nose. But I will take into account that this is a young Distillery that is still experimenting with its possibilities. I'm sure they will find their way in the long run as the Zuidam distillery certainly knows how to produce new spirit. I'm already looking forward to try other expressions of this Dutch Distillery.

Jan van den Ende                                                               June 2014