Thursday, July 25, 2013
Tuesday, July 23, 2013
Thursday, July 18, 2013
When walking on the shores of the lakes deep inside Finland, you never know what you’re going to find out there!
That iconic character knows how to relax, and enjoy the summer!
The time looses it’s meaning and seconds turn into minutes, into hours and into vacation.
Wednesday, July 17, 2013
The End game
Well, now that some of the tears have gone there is time for the analysis. I make it short. If you want to enchant the taste of chili, use smoke whisky. The thin line is somewhere at 60%. Caol Ila will send you deep down, while Lagavulin can be much more gentle. Ardbeg gets stronger as time passes, so Corryvreckan is an excellent sensation bringer.
Tuesday, July 16, 2013
Wednesday, July 10, 2013
Since it is the summer and during this season strawberries are at their best, it is the reason to experiment a bit. For those, who are impatient: don’t do it.
I’ve been always keen to try out new tastes, when it comes to whisky. So far this journey is just beginning, but hopefully I can share some results as time passes by. I see no reason, why there would not be a good combinations of various whisky and food.
Strawberries.. They are very sweet and there is a very fresh taste when they are at their best. In this case, those were picked on the same day as tasted, and they were also organically produced.
I gave a few different styles of whisky a chance:
- Springbank 14yo single cask. This was a very much sherry flavored dram, but I must say this combination did not work out at all. It was all very bitter and tastes conflicted on the elemental level.
- Highland Park 16yo. Similar experience, than with Springbank 14. Sherry and strawberries just don’t work.
- Ardbeg Galileo. Perhaps Marsala wine would help? Perhaps a bit, but not much. I didn’t try combination with dark chocolate and strawberries, but I suspect it might just do the trick with Galileo.
- Bruichladdich Islay Barley 2006. Nope, didn’t work. The summery taste of Barley was lost and the result was a conflict again. Not that unpleasant, but not a good one either. No luck here.
- Benromach Peat Smoke. This was almost a ok mix. But still, I would not offer this to anybody as a delicacy. Peat did work out a lot better than sherry, however.
- Wasmund’s bourbon. This actually worked out the best. Strong tastes, but from a different world helped out. The result was much more in alignment with strawberries, than it was when tasting a Scotch whisky.
The result is.. Unless you really want to – strawberries and whisky are not a taste that go together as raw elements. Bourbons however, might do the trick to some level but it was not nearly as good as mixing strawberries with a sparkling wine. But I will continue experimenting, and check out if – by a cosmic chance of the vast universe - some tastes do actually lock in to each other like tar to your favored cloth.
Summer continues! Slainté!
Friday, July 5, 2013
Kilchoman Distillery has been busy. 15th of July they will release 100% Islay 3rd Edition, batch is limited to 10 000 bottles. It is a vatting of four and five year old fresh bourbon casks. You should expect delicate and floral nose of soft fruits and pear drops which explodes with peat smoke in the mouth. Picture by Kilchoman.
I enjoyed earlier 100% Islay editions, especially the 2nd edition hit the right smoke receptors in my mouth. Somehow, I don’t think this would do any less effect. Kilchoman has been developing their whisky into better and better all the time, at least on my Glencairn.
Also, they have upcoming releases in 2013 Autumn
- Club Release
- 2007 Vintage
Monday, July 1, 2013
Like a sunny and warm summer day. You swim in a lake, that has pleasant and clear waters. Occasional cold stream refreshes your feet and you dive deep to feel it more. There are dragonflies catching their prey, a duck and it’s eight ducklings swimming near a shore. Seldom clouds, but no fear of changing weather. It feels like a vacation, on which I am right now. But occasionally, there is a need to get back to the laptop and tell about a whisky, that suits the day.
Laphroag QA had evaded me for a while, and I accidentally found this on a ferry – this is a travel retail exclusive bottling. The tube inlays “a second maturation in fresh, un-charred American white oak (Quercus Alba) casks. “. QA stands, as you might now guess, for Quercus Alba. But this would be a perfect gift, because of it’s name, for Quality Assurance team night.
The nose contains the Laphroaig family characteristics. There is the fenol medical part, which has made Laphroaig very famous – liked or not. Some smoke, some sweetness. This is the cold stream in the lake, there is more body and character. There is the nasty temper, you want to wake up with control.
The first sip is both a strong and pale. There is (now that the bottle has been couple of weeks open..) Laphroaig medicine taste with some smoke. Then there is sweetness and spiciness too. But in the middle it feels a bit like you’ve taste the lake water or accidentally poured water into your Glencairn instead of Aalto (water glass).. At the end the strong protagonist returns and saves the day, after a gloomy dark cloud of water that poured it’s weak performance on QA.
The taste does not linger too long, but there is some to chatter about.
QA is an interesting package. At first, I was not impressed at all. It felt too watered. Later on, when the bottle gained some air and my tongue got more used to it… there was a positive change. Now I feel, it is complex, yes, and it is Laphroaig. It does not take you to the Northern fury, but instead to blue lakes of warm waters and pleasant experiences. It is a nice Uisge Beatha to experience, easy and cleanly flavored. You don’t have to be the pro to understand and value this one, but even with years of tasting – it does give you something to think about. It does not break records, it does not stand on a high cliff alone and scream about ruling the world. But it does well with a group, or with some campfire. It is a great member of it’s team in a tasting. And would be a nice gift for anyone who is interested of Islay drams.