Whisky Tasting – Guest Night, with 5 Grand Drams , Part 1

It’s 7 pm on Friday 17th February and the Whisky Boys guests are arriving for a great night of Whisky tasting, chat and laughter.

Jim and Nicola’s guest tonight are:-

Lee Madigan – A retired Navel Officer, and now working for SEPA, Lee loves to enjoy a dram or two with friends and family.

Helen Stewart – The UK Brand Manager for the Scotch Malt Whisky Society, and a friend of  Jim and Nicola’s who frequently enjoys a dram or two at the society’s Edinburgh venues and have also met at many a Whisky festival throughout the country.

Alex Milne – A businessman and entrepreneur from Kirkintilloch, on the outskirts of Glasgow.

Reg Aulds – A local business man and is also a partner in an Architect’s Practice based in the centre of Glasgow.

The Whisky Boys have 5 bottles of fine Scotch Whisky that we are sure our guests will enjoy and savour, and hopefully add one or two to their list of must buys.

The table is set with water jugs, oatcakes, dark and milk chocolate and tasting glasses, so with nothing else to do, lets open the first bottle and that is:-

Glen Moray – Speyside Single malt Scotch Whisky, Aged 10 Years – Chardonnay Cask Matured, 40% Alc/vol 70cl.

The tasting.

Colour…Light ale.

Nicola’s tasting.

Nose…Sunny hot days, peach trees, almond jam cake.
Taste…Mellow, marshmallows, raspberry yoghurt, scones and jam, toffee cups.
Finish…Medium and very smooth.
Score…3.5 Corks

Lee’s tasting.

Nose…fresh and fruity, fresh cut grass.
Taste…Golden toffee, fruity grapes, easily drunk without any water.
Finish…Smooth and medium.
Score…4 Corks.

Helen’s tasting.

Nose…Butterscotch, very honeyed, lovely and fruity.
Taste…Toffee and grapes.
Finish…Medium, smooth and very easy drinking.
Score…3.5 Corks

Jim’s tasting.

Nose…Sweet toffee and loads of stewed fruit, a little floral note in the background.
Taste…Fruit cake and Cornish vanilla ice cream, root ginger, so so easy to sip.
Finish…Lemon and ginger marmalade, warm vanilla, sweet and medium finish.
Score…3.5 Corks

Alex’s tasting.

Nose…Very light aroma’s, fruit cocktail.
Taste…Smooth, could be too nice, I could guzzle this all night.
Finish…Warming and smooth.
Score…4 Corks

Reg’s tasting.

Nose…Honey smooth, very subtle, vanilla.
Taste…Soft with a hint of toffee, very nice, needs nothing added except more from the bottle.
Finish…Medium and super smooth.
Score…4 Corks

Overall score…4 Corks.

Everyone at the table really enjoyed this elegant and beautiful dram, all the Whisky Boys guests said they intend to buy a bottle, they all said it was a gentle delight to taste.

We now move onto our second tasting, which is:-

Fettercairn Single Highland malt Scotch Whisky – Fior, Limited Release, 42% Alc/vol 70cl.

Fior means pure or true in Gaelic

The tasting.

Colour…Rose gold.

Nicola’s tasting.

Nose…Cracked leather, chocolate almonds, hazelnut latte, orange ginger crush.
Taste…Toffee caramel slice, cinnamon swirl, dark chocolate raisins.
Finish…Long and full of chocolate.
Score…4 Corks.

Lee’s tasting.

Nose…Toffee and loads of hazelnuts.
Taste…Chocolate orange and cocoa.
Finish…Long but a little sharp.
Score…3.5 Corks.

Helen’s tasting.

Nose…Puff of smoke initially on the nose, chocolate and toffee.
Taste…Cinnamon, toffee rum and raisins, Christmas cake goodness.
Finish…Velvety chocolate, superb.
Score…4 Corks

Jim’s tasting.

Nose…Chocolate and loads of honey, slightest whiff of smoke, chocolate.
Taste…I get the gentle peat smoke, dark chocolate covered coffee beans, some citrus fruit.
Finish… I can get the sherry now, the gentle smoke still lingers, love this one.
Score…4 Corks.

Alex’s tasting.

Nose…A hint of camphor, later going to syrup of figs, memories, memories.
Taste…Sweet and smoky, a gentle hint of fruit.
Finish…Medium, strong but not rasping.
Score…3.5 Corks

Reg’s tasting.

Nose…I get the camphor, slightly chemically, but a very inviting dram.
Taste…Rich, reminds me of all things Christmas, very very nice.
Finish…Smooth and long.
Score…3.5 Corks.

Overall Score…3.5 Corks

Yes everyone at the table found this to be quite complex and we all enjoyed finding some of the flavours and aroma’s that are hidden with this fabulous dram. Jim is ensuring that a bottle of this is always in his cabinet. if any of our readers are in Cumbernauld, the new Wetherspoons ( The Carrick Stone ) have this dram on their gantry and they only charging £2.85 for a dram, great value.

Third for tonight is :-

A Scotch Malt Whisky Society Bottling, Aged 11 Years, “Sherbet Fountains and Rainbow Drops”, 4.158 – 56.6% Alc/vol 70cl

This dram comes from the SMWS and is a 1st fill ex-Bourbon Cask, Distilled 15th October 1999 and is one of only 187 bottles. The code 4.158 means – 4 is for Highland Park Distillery and 158 is the 158th cask that the Society has bottled.

The tasting.

Colour… Sun kissed honey.

Nicola’s tasting.

Nose…Tropical cocktail, sugar syrup, heather honey on crackers.
Taste…Sherbet dip/ fizzy cream soda, ice cream soda float.
Finish…Long, sweet and dry.
Score…4 Corks

Lee’s tasting.

Nose…Germaline, with water it opens up with loads of honey.
Taste…Very fizzy vanilla.
Finish…medium but delightfully sweet.
Score…3 Corks

Helen’s tasting.

Nose… Tropical fruits, sherbety, melons.
Taste…Fizzy, sherbet, wafer of flying saucer sweets.
Finish…Long and a fizzy delight.
Score…4 Corks

Jim’s tasting.

Nose…Caribbean fruits, Highland heather honey, i get a little vanilla.
Taste…Light floral Orcadian peat, sherbet dib dab, sea salt.
Finish… Delightfully long, quite drying, smoke remains, a little black pepper spiciness.
Score…4 Corks.

Alex’s tasting.

Nose…A bit eye watering – add some water and it changes completely to be slightly pepperminty.
Taste…Strong and a bit burny.
Finish…A nice clear hot aftertaste, improving as I enjoy the finish.
Score…3 Corks.

Reg’s tasting.

Nose…Sherbet – yes, strong aroma but inviting.
Taste…No water needed, love this one, Strong but smooth and that is not an easy trick, just love it.
Finish…Can only say, love it.
Score…4 Corks.

Overall score…4 Corks.

You can only get this bottling through the Scotch Malt Whisky Society ( SMWS )

Jim and Nicola love single cask, cask strength drams and this Highland Park is no exception, the Whisky Boys were pleased with some of the comments our guests gave us, as most of them are not too familiar with cask strength drams.

We would recommend that all our readers log onto www.smws.com and read all about the society and the benefits that you can receive by becoming a member.

That is part 1 over and we shall publish our part 2 very soon which will contain all the tastings of the remaining two bottles we opened tonight.

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