Forever Later… (past tasting evaluations) part 2

(From original update I tried to do in September 2014) The past two weeks have been really exciting. I’ve gotten to attend two whisky tastings hosted by brand ambassadors (one with Bruichladdich and one with The Glenlivet), a tasting of the Bullet, Bullet 10, and three separate single barrel four roses with two other geeky friends of mine after a cocktail history lesson, and in two days I will be hosting a Campbeltown tasting for the East Bay Whisk(e)y Club. Besides all of these fabulous tastings I’ve been interviewing to actually get into this industry that I’m spending all of my time learning about. (and it seems to be going well, but that is all i’ll say for now)

On to the tastings. As you will probably notice I will be skipping two months. (I couldn’t find my evaluation sheets anywhere one for them and the other was moved because people couldn’t make it)

Later edit(now): I have come back to this after months and months and months. Who knew writing a blog could take up so much time and energy that you just didn’t actually ever do it!! I will also sadly not be putting what the tasting winners were because I can’t recall them any longer.

July- Islay Single Malt Whisky Tasting (K&L Un-peated CS NCF 1992 Bruichladdich, Bowmore 15 Darkest, Ardbeg Uigeadail)

Being one of those people who doesn’t really care for peat (but actively working on it) I made a lineup more for people who were trying to get into peated whisky then for people who were already into the heavily peated Islay malts. Everyone still enjoyed the tasting, however I will most definitely need to revisit this subject in a future tasting.

1992 Bruichladdich (me=1, G=2/1) (this might be one of my favorite whiskies ever)

The color of a light white wine with very small, very slow forming droplets. The aroma is mellow with toffee, resin, iodine, butter, and fat. This whisky is super viscous, creamy, oily, and rich with flavors of butter, iodine(squid ink), ocean water with an extremely long finish with the iodine flavor lasting the longest and being the most prominent.

With water this whisky opens up to reveal lots of interesting fruit qualities. Pear, apple, citrus fruits, and some soft florals on the nose, but keeping the iodine and resin notes as well. The butter note goes away on the palate, leaving just the briny, iodine flavor that sticks with you forever.

Bowmore 15 Darkest (me=3 for sure!)

Deep tawny port in color, with thick fast moving legs, aromas of iodine, leather, and resin, and also surprisingly soft (can’t feel any alcohol on the nose). The mouthfeel is really soft, and when I say soft I almost mean boring. The taste is sweetish, with iodine, slight peat, leather, and resin. All in all, sadly quite bland.

Water helps a bit on the palate, opening up some strawberry notes, but also adding some tar notes that then linger in a really long and unpleasant way. My other notes I wrote” Rotten vegetable after taste”

Ardbeg Uigeadal (me=2)

Deep copper color with very small, very slow forming droplets. Tuns of stuff going on in this one! Pete, brown sugar, raisin, toffy, butter, oil, pepper, apricot, fruit(general), blueberry?, like I said a lot! Super interesting. Super rich and heavy mouthfeel, creamy, tingly, flavors of woodsmoke, cigar, blackberry, leather, plums, oil, and with a slight medicinal flavor as well. The finish is drying with pete and syrup.

Adding water brings out some weird vegetal notes like bell peppers, moss, pete, and just very earthy. Mouthfeel gets much hotter, and all of the fruit qualities vanish on the nose and the palate. Finish develops a cayenne pepper bite and some of the mossiness stays threw as well. (MUCH BETTER WITHOUT WATTER)

 

 

 

 

Sadly I’ve lost my sheets for my other tastings but hopefully will be adding more reviews as time goes on.

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Wow. Forever Later… Part 1

Now that Five months and a summer performance contract has passed I am finally finding time to update this little journal.

(I am also planning on posting more evaluations of everything that has found its way into my cabinet in the past months)For now I will be Putting up my evaluations from four whisk(e)y tasting that I’ve hosted. (please forgive any lack of consistency) I will also put what the group favorite and my favorites were next to the whisk(e)ys. (me, and G for group)

Also, for reference I am using Whisky magazine’s color chart.

 

March- Irish Whiskey Tasting (Redbreast 15, Bushmills 16, Jameson 18)

Redbreast 15 (me=2, G=2/3)

Deep copper color with slow forming thin streams when swirled. Aroma is  mellow, buttery, and slightly prickly with vanilla, honey and toffee. The whiskey feels tingly and smooth with a rich body and flavors of mellon, honey, and plum(or prune?). The finish was warm and long with a brief period of calm after swallowing.

With water the aroma got a bit waxy, and the flavor got much sweeter with a more prominent vanilla flavor.

Bushmills 16 (me=3, G=3/1  two people said this was their favorite)

Tawny (color) with fast forming thick legs. The aroma is sour, dry, and grainy with citrus, malt, barley, and wood resin.  Starting with a really puckering dryness the whiskey feels thin with flavors of resin and grape skin (very tannic) with some spice underneath. The finish is hot and fast.

With water the aroma looses some of the sour in exchange for more of an oily, waxy smell and tobacco. The only flavor note I put here was french fries. (I don’t remember caring for this whiskey at all)

Jameson 18 (me=1, G=1/2)

Deep gold with very slow forming droplets. The aroma here is mellow and full of honey, apricot, and fig. The entry is soft, clean, and very slightly drying with honey and vanilla and an overall sweetness that was of note. The finish was slow and long, but started hot with a sting.

This was one of the first whisk(e)ys that I liked more with a tiny(small espresso spoon) bit of water. The aroma had more apple and pear, the dryness in the mouthfeel went away for a soft creaminess, and the flavor became all mellon, apple, and pear, with some honey and citrus. Also, the hot start to the finish went away. Basically everything that I thought brought this whisky down a bit was fixed with just the tinniest bit of water.

 

April- Rye Whiskey Tasting (Whistle Pig 10, Redemption Rye Cask Strength batch 2, E.H. Taylor Rye) 

I had a lot of fun with this tasting! Mostly because I got to talk about what is going on in the “craft” whisky industry a bit and also even more then that talk about what is currently the majority of american rye whisky.

Whistle Pig 10 (me=2, G=2/3)

Old Gold with slow forming thin legs that turn into droplets. The aroma is grainy and peppery with apple and old paper. Starts sharp, tingling and dry and is leafy, waxy, resinous, and citrusy.  The finish is try and chalky.

With Water the flavor gets a little more fruity with some pear but it is mostly the same.

More then everything else everyone loved the nose on this was amazing and complex, but the flavor of the whiskey didn’t live up which is why it didn’t get first.

Redemption CS Batch 2?(me=1, G=1) everyone loved it

Tawny with very slow forming thin droplets. The aroma is dusty and mellow with honey, caramel and fruit(ripe mellon?). Super rich and mellow mouthfeel with leather, roots  and corn. The finish is salty, spicy, and briny(pickle?)

EH Taylor (me=3, G=2/3)

Russetmuscat with medium fast forming droplets turning into thin legs. The aroma was earthy, with moss, pear, honey, plum, raisin, vanilla, and dry noodle. The whiskey was mellow with a juicy and creamy mouthfeel and flavors of oak, honey, moss, and grape skin. The finish was soft with a slowly growing burn.

 

I would also like to say props to all of the amazing bloggers who sit down and write every week. I’m sure this is going to get easier as I do it more, but it really felt like pulling teeth just to get these first two months written down and posted.

Until next time,

-Elijah

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A Notebook of Evaluations

The more I get involved with food, and coffee, and spirits… and wine, and beer, and cheese, and chocolate, and olives, and so many other consumable things that we can evaluate, the more I realize how interesting it is trying to figure out what exactly the flavors, feels, and aromas are that are associated with the particular thing, and the more I do this the better I seem to get at evaluating other things.

This Blog will be notebook for my evaluations, mostly consisting of coffee, and whisk(e)y as I host both cuppings (coffee tastings), and blind whisk(e)y tastings for friends from time to time, but also for other interesting solids and liquids.

That’s all for now.

-Elijah

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