Review: Port Charlotte An Turas Mor

20 Sep
Distillery: Bruichladdich

Bottling: Distillery
Age Statement: No Age Statement
Brand type: Port Charlotte Multi-vintage (An Turas Mor)
ABV: 46%
Price: $90-$110
Where Scotchfinder found it: Royal Mile Whiskies

Full disclosure: I have a fondness for Bruichladdich. I also am in full love with the PC series. Let us begin:

Port Charlotte – Multi-vintage
(An Turas Mor)

Nose: 22
**Sniff sniff** Mmmmm. Smells like peat. Metallic (some would call it citrusy notes) peat. Heavy metal peat… but with a weakness that the others in the series do not have. Where art thou? I’m really struggling to dig my huge nostrils into this one. When I catch it, though, yum.

Body: 22
Medium oiliness.

Taste: 21
Burst of immediate pepperiness. This one hangs out on the back of the roof of your mouth, but does not stain your mouth like the other non-multi-vintage. The smoky peat is good, but again, why so weak? I know it was reduced to 46% from the low 60%s, but it really shows. It may be more palatable at a lower alcohol level, but boy does it suffer in an overall way.

Finish: 22
The sweetness of this bad boy shows itself dancing on top of the smoky peatness. It has a fairly quick finish, though. You still feel aftershocks, but mostly as a faint rumble in the background.

I really had the highest of hopes for this one, but I feel that Jim McEwan knew what he was doing when he released this bad boy in its individual parts as PC5 through PC8. I love you, Port Charlotte. I will drink this one when I do not want to damage my lovely parental bottles.

Scotchfinder Total: 87


Review: Ardbeg Alligator 2011 Release

19 Sep

Bottling: Distillery
Age Statement: N/A
Brand type: Alligator
ABV: 51.2%
Price: $90-$110
Where Scotchfinder found itThe Party Source

Ardbeg has been showing its real willingness to take risks as well as be an advanced marketing machine. Almost all of the releases in recent years has had the trademark Ardbeg flavor which I can only assume comes mostly from their wilderness laden water source. Peat peat peat peat.

I was able to get my Ardbeg Alligator by luck through some connections and I couldn’t have been more excited to try it!

Nose: 24

Ardbeg Alligator 2011

The “Alligator” taste profile name comes from the amount of charring done to the barrel. Imagine a log thrown into a bon fire. After a little while, the log becomes very charred and has a cubed-texture that resembles alligator skin. The charring has three levels, low, medium, and alligator. The more the barrel is charred, the more the whisky is able to physically travel through the wood obtaining the flavors contained in the wood. In this case, these are used bourbon oak barrels, so one should assume the bourbon would take center stage. Not so, actually. There are hints of bourbon on the nose, but after that, the bourbon is overwhelmed by the rest of the Ardbeg Alligator contents. Lots of smoke and peat as Ardbeg normally provides.

Body: 22
It is Ardbeg . It almost never changes with these newer releases and generally does not disappoint. The only exception to this is the Ardbeg Blasda.

Taste: 24
Here is what I was looking for–something different. The first unique taste that smacks the bottom of your tongue is the cigar ash tray flavor. This sounds gross, but for some reason, it works. This taste dwindles with each sip, but I have most definitely not experienced a taste like that before! Otherwise, you are going to get the staple belt leather, tobacco, and smokey peat. Yummy yum yum!

Finish: 23
Again, this is an Ardbeg . If you have had it before, you know what I’m talking about. The finish tends to be a reverberation of everything you have already experience and unless you brush your teeth, eat an onion raw, and chug some Dave’s Insanity Sauce, you will be tasting this buddy for a while. Ardbeg‘s signature finish is probably my favorite part of all Ardbeg releases and this new addition is no exception.

If you can get your hands on one of these, I highly recommend it for any peat head!

Scotchfinder Total: 94

Review: Glenkinchie 1991 Distillers Edition

18 Sep

Bottling: Distillery
Age Statement: 13-year
Brand type: Distiller’s Edition Double Matured in Amantillado Sherry Cask
ABV: 43%
Price: $70-90
Where Scotchfinder found it: Mad Rose Tavern
Glenkinchie 1991 Double Matured Distiller’s Edition

Glenkinchie is one of two lowland brands of single-malt scottish whiskies left in current production. The other is Auchentoshan. Glenkinchie is not known for going beyond their normally 12-year staple, so this one raises an eye-brow immediately. Lowlands tend to be very light in nature but very delicate and enjoyable as well.

Awkwardly sitting at the Mad Rose Tavern with my phone in hand to record review notes, I got to reviewing another odd-ball release that my expectations were very low going into it.

Nose: 23
Distinctly fruity with a hint of burning alcohol. I thought I was being overly sensitive, but two friends of mine brought the strong alcohol vapors into the discussion upon their sample as well.  Backing off and sniffing slowly, cherry wine and coconut pop out. Highly aromatic and pleasing to the nostrils! Very nice.

Body and taste: 23 and 21
Glenkinchie is notably soooooo normal. This is NOT. The body is medium oily and quite rich. Heavy sherry wine lays on the tongue and roof of the mouth with a lovely complexity. And…

Finish: 23
… sticks around after dinner for coffee. There really is not much competition from other Lowland whiskies in turns of the sticking-around factor. Light maple syrup hints shows up if you have the patience to listen for it long enough between sips. This was the most unexpected part of the experience!

This one really blew my mind and hit the spot tonight. To be honest, however, my expectations were quite low going in. Touché, Glenkinchie. Touché. I would be running to the store to snap up this bottling if my wife would not throw me in the dog house after last week’s shipment.

Scotchfinder Total: 90

FOUND! Ardbeg Alligator US release!

16 Sep

‘via Blog this’

The much-coveted Ardbeg Alligator release!

You may want to snap this up if you can. They won’t be there for long, that’s for sure!!

Thanks to DC Happy Hours for the hot tip!

Glencairn Wide-Bowl Whisky Glasses (Set of 4) – Wine Enthusiast

16 Sep
Glencairn Wide-Bowl Whisky Glasses (Set of 4) – Wine Enthusiast:

So what do you think?

These Glencairn Wide-Bowl Glasses look really fun for you types out there that like a little ice in your whisk(e)y! I think that I’ll probably pass on these since they are 4″ wide.

When looking at this glass’ picture, I just realized that I’m watching a whisk(e)y death sentence being carried out right in front of my eyes! I will be in the shower crying quietly to myself now.

Ardbeg Alligator released!

8 Sep
Ardbeg Alligator at Royal Mile Whiskies (click here):

Not sure if any of you have seen this yet, but I heard about it when I visited the distillery in July when it was being bottled!

ARDBEG Alligator
Ardbeg Alligator

I am attempting to get my hands on it and I will do a full review when I can. I am VERY much looking forward to this little nipper. Stay tuned!

REVIEW: Springbank 18-year

1 Sep
Distillery: Springbank

Bottling: Distillery
Age Statement: 18-year
Brand type: N/A
ABV: 46%
Price: $150-170
Where Scotchfinder found it: MacArthur Beverages

Springbank 18-year

I am not going to lie. Springbank makes me feel guilty. Maybe it is the price of each bottle, no matter the age statement. Nah, it is the price. Springbank is a pricy malt. I can never quite reconcile the price with the quality and justify each dram.

Nose: 24
Call me a sucker for sugar, but this one is syrupy sweet all the way and I haven’t even taken a sip. I can almost see the sugar like heat off summer licorice-coated blacktop. You can smell the age of the wood seeping out of your glass as well reminding one of a dried fruit of some sort. No doubt the mustiness from the older casks are creeping around and just taunting you to drink.

Body: 22
Thick and yummy. Sits on the back of your tongue before…

Taste: 21
…it bites the sides of your tongue! Not sure what that was, but the alcohol hit a little sharp here. You can really taste the barley and oak on this one. Sweet as expected, but a with a bite I was not expecting.

Finish: 23
Faint licorice bounces around with a faint shoe-polish(?) before disappearing way too soon. I cannot express that enough. I really wanted this to hang around and it just kind of faded. Is this my price consciousness prodding me with regret? Nah.

Scotchfinder Total: 90