Manchester Gin

Manchester Overboard
Manchester, until a few years ago, had no gin history at all. Never a distillery mentioned, yet within the North West a hive of gin production with G&J Distillers only a few miles away in Warrington. Since the launch of Thomas Dakin and its plans of being the first Manchester gin to be produced within the city, numerous others have taken its mantle, including Manchester Three Rivers and Manchester Gin. It’s the latter that receives a focus, as they launch their latest gin expression to the city.

“It all began at 1.30am on a wet and cold February evening in Manchester. Whilst she sat alone minding the coats, he was a spare wheel to his two friends. From across the room he spotted her and offered to buy her a drink. Her response was sweet and simple, “a G&T”. Over the next hour they sat discussing everything from travelling the world to their favourite foods. Oh and not to forget, their love of gin.

Two years quickly passed and to anyone who knew us, we became known as ‘The Poppets,’ so much so that when you look at the back of our bottle, you will see the distillers as ‘P&P’ which means we made the bottle together, with love.”

A story of true dedication, not one for the money so-to-speak, it comes across as genuine affection for the category, with Manchester the forefront to its production, adopting the symbol of the city, the working Bee, that was adopted itself during the Industrial Revolution as it embodied the work-ethic of Mancunians’.

Months passed before Seb and Jenny settled upon ‘Wendy’, a bespoke-made copper column still that creates their take on a London Dry Gin, using twelve botanicals overall that include Dandelion and Burdock Root, seasonal orange and lemon, ground almonds, coriander and juniper.

However, this time around, it’s their newly released (as of July 2017), Overboard expression, their take on the Navy Strength at 57% abv after their success in their Raspberry Infused bottle. How does it fare? Well below, I give to you my tasting notes –

Manchester Overboard – 57%

Wax-styled lemon and pomelo aromas upon the nose, with hints of dandelion coming through. A growing profile of lemons and coriander, followed by the earthy tones of juniper that follows into a long, fresh and slightly dry finish of cinnamon and almond.

It’s that new that a signature serve hasn’t been created yet, although I’ve personally had it within a gin and tonic, using light tonic instead of Indian, which offered a refreshing finish and retained the strength well. It’s also not available yet, but keep an eye out on their website shop so you can order a bottle for your cabinet once it’s released!

© David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast 2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog/sites author and owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Haig Club

Haig
Haig Club was released with much fanfare after the collaboration with footballer David Beckham and British entrepreneur Simon Fuller, with many taking it as a swipe to ‘outsiders’ who attach their name to a brand to make quick cash, whilst others looked at it as a great opportunity to shed light on a brand and category that has some elements that need a 21st Century update to its customer audience.

It’s with this that I take a closer look and see if the hype is worth its name.

The House of Haig itself is built on nearly 400 years of distilling heritage and can trace its whisky producing roots back to the seventeenth century in Scotland. In 1824, John Haig established Scotland’s oldest grain distillery, Cameronbridge, and is said to have perfected the art of producing Grain Whisky in continuous Coffey and Stein stills.

Haig Whisky quickly rose to become one of the most successful and popular Scotch whiskies in the world before falling into decline some 30 years ago as it left the Haig family ownership and was passed through a series of multinational drinks companies. In 2014, Diageo launched a new Haig whisky to add to the existing old guard whisky stable of Haig Gold Label, Haig Dimple and Haig Pinch blended scotch whiskies; Haig Club, an expression utilising a unique process that combines grain whisky from three different cask types.

But how does it fare? Well below, I give to you my tasting notes –

Haig Club – 40%

Light butterscotch and fudge on the nose, with a slight hint of tropical flesh fruits coming through. Subtle notes of vanilla, butter and toasted oak on the palate, with a hint of coconut and tropical fruit provide a long, slightly dry finish.

A great flavour profile to enjoy on its own, or indeed within its signature serve;

Haig CLub - New Old FashionedNew Old-Fashioned

Glass – 

Rocks

Ingredients – 

60 ml Haig Club
10 ml Sweet Vermouth
2 dashes orange bitters

Method – 

Build by adding cubed or hand cracked ice in an Old Fashioned glass or tumbler. Add Haig Club and pour in 10 ml of sweet Vermouth. Drop in 2 dashes of orange bitters and garnish with a lemon twist and cherry and serve with a glass stirrer for the drinker to dilute.

The inspiration for the name Haig Club can be found in archive materials dating back to the 1920’s, in which Haig Whisky was advertised as “The Clubman’s Whisky”. Last year also saw the release of the Haig Club Clubman, the different in it being matured exclusively in American ex-bourbon casks. Either one a good call for your drinks cabinet, and its versatility means you can create a decent drink, whether cocktail or mixer. To be fair, I’d enjoy it on its own, it works!

© David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast 2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog/sites author and owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Skin

Skin
German gins are seen as some of the best around, with Monkey 47 leading the way in how we can approach the category. With this, Skin gin has made a splash here in the UK since its launch by Martin Birk Jensen in March 2015, and its striking packaging and different ‘skins’ that can be produced have caused many a stir in the right direction. But what about the liquid itself?

Produced in the ‘Altes Land’ (which translates as ‘Old Country’), just outside the German city of Hamburg, seven botanicals are chosen to enhance Skin gin; unique Moroccan Mint, citrus peels of orange, pink grapefruit, lime and lemon, juniper and Vietnamese coriander. Each botanical is individually distilled on a wheat based neutral spirit in a ‘Anisateur’ within an old copper still, in order to obtain close to 100% of the essential oils they contain. The essences are then blended by hand and bottled.

So how does it fare? Well, below I give to you my tasting notes –

Skin – 42%

Bold, fresh mint bursts through, followed by the pink grapefruit and the wax of lemons on the nose. Incredibly soft on the palate, with a slight menthol note flowing gently. Lime, the subtle hint of coriander, and the orange peels blend well for a long, fresh finish.

An incredibly fresh gin to enjoy, and one that would stand up well within a classic gin and tonic;

Skin Gin and tonicSkin Gin and Tonic

Glass – 

Wine / Goblet

Ingredients – 

40 ml Skin Gin
1 bottle Thomas Henry Tonic Water

Method – 

Stir over ice and garnish with orange peel.

A great gin to enjoy over summer, and with the different skins available, as well as their navy strength option, it’s a fantastic addition to any drinks cabinet.

© David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast 2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog/sites author and owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

 

Curio

Curio
It’s rare to come across a local gin that makes enough noise to be heard on the other side of the country, but it seems to be the case with Cornwall, led the way by Southwestern Distillers, and now continued by Curio Spirits Company. Heading to the North of England can be a daunting task for any brand who lack, for example, the personnel to consistently appear at the numerous gin festivals that pop up, who themselves are looking further afield to stand out with their brand offerings. It’s down to the power of the liquid then, the image of the brand, and the consistent approach to their values that can really win a crowd over.

With this, lets see what the hype about Curio is all about.

Originating from Mullion in West Cornwall, William and Rubina Tyler-Street have set out to train and work with two master distillers since 2012 to perfect what they believe embodies Cornwall and the natural botanicals that surround them, including the likes of rock samphire and cardamom, creating an air of wonder and curiosity.

December 2014 saw the release of Curio after the investment of two small stills, a rotary evaporator and plenty of experiments. The Rock Samphire gin expression was first to hit the shelves, followed by their Peruvian Cocoa Nib vodka, and lately their Cardamom vodka, all using natural spring water from the Cornish Spring Water Company.

 

My first taste of Curio see’s the Peruvian Cocoa Nib, a triple distilled vodka that is gently infused with Peruvian Cocoa Nibs and produced in small batches. But how does it fare? Well below, I give to you my tasting notes;

Curio Peruvian Cocoa Nib – 40%

Soft, subtle fresh cocoa with blends of vanilla and fudge on the nose. Slight roasted cocoa nib once upon the palate, with notes of creamy toffee, sweet fudge and a lasting flavour of warm cream.

Although recommended to be served neat, I did come across this;

Curio Chocolate Orange Martini
Curio Chocolate Orange Martini

Glass – 

Martini

Ingredients –

25 ml Curio Cocoa Nib Vodka
25 ml Cointreau
2 dashes Fee Brothers Chocolate bitters
2 dashes Fee Brothers Orange bitters

Method –

Pour all ingredients into mixing glass with ice cubes. Stir well. Strain in chilled martini cocktail glass. Squeeze oil from orange peel onto the drink.

An impressive flavoured vodka, and it’s grabbed my curiosity to experience the rest of the range. Start your collection today for the drinks cabinet as they’re already looking to expand with plans for a larger distillery in Mullion on the Lizard Peninsular.

© David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast 2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog/sites author and owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

 

Patrón Perfectionists Come Out To Play In Bristol

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The team at Patrón came around to Bristol last week to host the next round of the current programme, the Patrón Perfectionist!

Hosted at Her Majesty’s Secret Service, the competitors found their way to the South West heat by offering a unique Patrón serve, worthy of impressing the judging panel and ultimately winning a place in the final, held in London later in the year.

Hailing from the likes of Dirty Martini in Cardiff, Be At One in Bournemouth and Salt Room in Brighton, the competitors were joined by UK Brand Ambassador Karine Tillard as they re-created their serve to the panel of myself, Karine and last-years South West winner Steven Young of Academy Espresso Bar in Barry.

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The top three will be showcased here today, so in third place saw Brighton represent with Jake Goldstein of Plotting Parlour. His ‘Commin Mathca’ saw him combine Patrón Silver, sustainable sherbet, pretzel syrup, matcha green tea and aquafaba together, complete with a garnish of a tiny pretzel and matcha.

Ben Alcock of host venue HMSS earned second place with his creation, ‘Beez-Ness Thyme’. A sour styled drink that saw Patrón Reposado, bee mix (honey, Aquavit, burgamot, fig, salt and absinthe), lemon juice, aquafaber and chickpea water, it came garnished with a simple twist of a lemon peel.

Bristol Preview 23
The winning serve though came from Chelsie Bailey of Red Light in Bristol. Named ‘El Camienzo Perfecto’, it saw Patrón Reposado, pineapple sherbet, cream, lime juice and egg white, topped with Mexican lager, dehydrated chilli and pineapple leaves.

So congratulations to Chelsie, who wins herself a trip to London to compete in the final against the other finalists from around the UK!

© David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast 2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog/sites author and owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Jägermeister

Jägermeister
I think it’s safe to say, Jägermeister has become Germany’s most famous drinks export. But other than its consumption within energy drinks, I’ve been looking forward to actually understand Jagermeister, and how it became one of the biggest brand calls the bar scene has ever seen.

So, here goes.

Jägermeister can trace its way back to 1878 and a gentleman named Wilhelm Mast, who founded a wine-vinegar business in his home town of Wolfenbüttel, Lower Saxony. The business is successful, and his son Curt Mast, comes on board, yet decides to turn the company into a different direction.

Curt showed great talent in the preparation and mixture of herbs, and in 1934, after many years of experiments, he developed a recipe that would become the profile we see of Jägermeister. Curt Mast dedicated his new recipe to all hunters and their honourable traditions. A toast of which every hunt would begin and end due to the spirits combination of only natural ingredients and pure alcohol. It’s with this that the stag would be become the figurehead to Jägermeister. However, it’s not just any stag to emblazon each bottle, but it’s said to be the stag that appeared to a wild hunter and converted him to Christianity. The same hunter who later became the patron saint of all hunters: Saint Hubertus.

The bottle itself is durable, with Curt tried and testing a variety from great heights to make sure the bottle was reliable in transporting his recipe across Germany. He also instructed that the doors to the “Kräuterkellerei”, where Jägermeister is produced, are only open to the 56 secret exotic herbs, blossoms, roots, and fruits, delivered here in sacks from across the world.

After selecting raw materials that are of high-quality for Jägermeister, their master distillers then carefully weigh them as specified in the original traditional recipe. They will then prepare several different dry mixtures of herbs. These are then gently extracted by cold maceration in a process that can take several weeks. Once complete, the master distiller will blend the macerates together and transfer them to one of 445 oak barrels within the cellar at Kräuterkellerei, themselves hewn from wood grown in the local forests of the ‘Pfalzerwald’.

But how does it fare? Well below, I give to you my tasting notes –

Jägermeister – 35%

Fresh orange peel and cinnamon come through on the nose, with a bold richness of allspice and cardamom present. Light, fresh notes of anise present on the palate first, with the rich, bold notes of burnt sugar, toffee, roasted coffee and tobacco leaf coming together. A lingering finish of sweet oak, raisin and orange peel.

Jägermeister Manifest – 38%

Pipped as the ‘world’s first’ super-premium herbal liqueur, Manifest is based on the brand’s original recipe of 56 herbs, roots and spices, but contains additional botanicals and is made using five macerates rather than four, whilst also being double-barrelled matured in both small and large oak casks for more than one year to intensify the flavour.
Light honey notes upon the nose, with a subtle sweet caramel profile sneaking through. A thin texture on the palate that warms up to an anise led profile of honey, raisin, cinnamon stick, clove and ginger. A lingering lick of spice on the finish.

Two fantastic herbal liqueurs, and would be enjoyed chilled or over ice for many years to come. However, this did catch my eye;

Jagermeister - Root 56
Root 56

Glass – 

Highball

Ingredients –

50 ml Jägermeister,
Top with Ginger Beer
Squeeze of fresh lime
Garnish with a slice of cucumber

An underrated brand to those who choose to shot, but take the time to experience it and it may surprise you. Make sure you have a bottle of either in your drinks cabinet, and grab some ginger beer too.

© David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast 2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog/sites author and owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

 

 

 

Isfjord

Isfjord
Got to love a good back story for a brand. Here’s Isfjord’s;

“It all started a little more than 100 years ago when a few good men made the first expedition to explore the Arctic region of Greenland – probably the roughest, cold and hard-hearted area on Earth. Then men who came back, came back with a wisdom of nature: They had discovered and explored the biggest island in the world, a country of nothing but ice and snow.

Today we still salute the brave men who took great great risks and discovered the wonders of nature – The amazing Ice Cap and the beautiful country of Greenland.”

Has you intrigued doesn’t it? I mean, no one ever really thinks of Greenland other than ice and snow, but someone had to discover it, and with many brands these days looking for a unique position within the category, it seems Isfjord may have found theirs.

In 2007, Isfjord realised that the extremely pure and soft water from the icebergs that naturally break off the Greenland Ice Cap and into the sea in Ilulissat (far north of the Polar Circle), are free from any pollutants and is some of the purest natural water on Earth.

Their gin and vodka expressions begin with the iceberg water, and either combined with Blonde wheat if creating the vodka, or botanicals such as juniper, lemon grass and cardamom if producing the gin, before being carefully distilled in accordance to the special process when distilling with iceberg water.

It’s the gin that will be the focus today though, as twelve different botanicals create the finished product. But how does it fare? Well below, I give to you my tasting notes –

Isfjord – 44%

Orange peel and subtle lemon grass are present on the nose, with cardamom pods shifting through near the end. Orange water blended with fresh juniper and candied oranges are a bold presence on the palate, leading to a fresh, light and long finish.

Great over ice, but even better within a gin and tonic;

Isfjord and Tonic

50 ml Isfjord Gin
Topped with premium tonic (Double Dutch Indian Tonic recommended)
Garnish with a slice of orange.

A great go-to premium styled gin, perfect for the supposed British summer too, but wouldn’t look out-of-place over the festive season either. One for the drinks cabinet. Now, where’s that vodka they have . . . .

© David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast 2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog/sites author and owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

 

 

Tappers

Tappers

It’s hard to tell these days what the term ‘small batch’ can entail. What’s the limit of bottles to produce before you’re no longer coined with the term? Does it stop when a brand becomes commercially available to the public? I only ask as it becomes increasingly difficult to differentiate, but in the end, surely it’s down the liquid being created, not the terminology it comes under?

Tappers is a great example. Hailing from West Kirby in the Wirral, they produce their gin on site, creating 40 bottles per batch, with the labels and bottling all done by hand. But they also highlight another creative production method named Compounding, which can also irk some gin purists the wrong way.

Again, surely it’s all about the end product?

Compound gin was associated with bootleggers evading the law during Prohibition times, and was generally seen as poor quality. Tappers have used this idea to better effect, using 8 different botanicals to create a recipe that took over a year to prepare. Their Master Compounder develops the botanical recipes with ingredients inspired by Britain and the local coastal area, including red clover, chickweed, sea beet, pepper and spicy black cardamom seeds, juniper, angelica root and orris root.

Infused into a 100% wheat neutral base, the brand is said to reflect the coastal heritage of West Kirby. But how does it fare? Well below, I give to you my tasting notes –

Tappers Dark Side – 39.6%

Orris with hints of the red clover come through on the nose subtly, with an intense kick of the cardamom once onto the palate. Fresh herbal notes strike through, with a subtle honey and thin angelica profile, leading to a ling finish.

Intense profile, which would work well within its signature serve;

Darkside G and T
Darkside G&T

50 ml Tappers Darkside Gin
East Imperial Old World Tonic
Sprig of thyme and wedge of orange to garnish.

A unique gin for the drinks cabinet, and with only 40 bottles made per batch, and their branch out into other styles, it could be one to invest in.

© David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast 2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog/sites author and owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

 

 

Italicus Rosolio di Bergamotto

Italicus

Italian drinks are a big focus for me at the moment, with the opening of my ‘The Bassano Bar @ PizzaExpress‘ in Manchester a great example of utilising a variety of Italian styles. The rosolio aperitivo category escapes me though, until the arrival of Italicus Rosolio di Bergamotto!

I’d imagine the rosolio category isn’t one that strikes too many bells to many, so a little rundown before heading to Italicus.

Rosolio is an ancient type of Italian liqueur, deriving its name from ‘Drosera rotundifolia’, itself a species of sundew. It used to be flavoured exclusive with the herb, but now it’s known for more homemade low alcohol content spirits. The liqueur is common in Piedmont and in Southern Italy. It enjoys a special popularity in Sicily, where it has been prepared since the sixteenth century and was given to house guests as a sign of good luck.
Local ingredients are typically used depending on the region (for example Sicily with Cedro citrus fruit and fennel) and aromatized with herbs and spices.

Giuseppe Gallo has brought the category from the 1850’s of Rosolio back to the new-age with the launch of Italicus back in September 2016. Using peels from bergamots grown from Italy’s UNESCO-protected area Calabrian region and Cidros from Sicily, they are infused into cold water to release the essential oils (a process named sfumatura) prior to being blended with Italian neutral grain spirit, all within a family-owned distillery in Moncalieri, Torino.

The resulting bergamot and cedro flavoured spirit is then blended for several days with a separate maturation that contains Roman chamomile from Lazio, lavender, gentian, yellow roses and lemon balm from Northern Italy.

But how does it fare? Well below, I give to you my tasting notes –

Italicus Rosolio di Bergamotto – 20%

Very fresh lemon balm, bergamot, citrus peel and gentian coming through on the nose, followed by a naturally sweet chamomile flavour upon the palate. Notes of subtle lavender, honey, rose petal and lemon balm ride a lingering fresh finish.

italicus
A fantastic liquid on its own, but one recommended to be enjoyed in the following way;

“50/50 with Prosecco, over ice and garnished with three green olives”

Better get a bottle for the drinks cabinet, there are friends and family to impress.

© David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast 2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog/sites author and owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

 

Balblair

Balblair
It’s fascinating to experience a brand of whisky that offers a whole host of expressions that are not to the norm. Vintages can be seen as an exclusive way to release something special, whether it corresponds with a certain milestone year, or a particular one-off style that’s never to be seen again. Indeed these sort of expressions become highly sought-after, and are rarely seen on a shelf within your favourite whisky haunt.

Balblair have seemed to buck the trend on this.

They only create vintages that are ‘timed to perfection’, and have done since 1790. No 12-year-old in sight. No 18-year-old to speak of. But a 1999 vintage? No problem.

But why this way? Lets take a look.

The Balblair Distillery was established back in 1790 in Dornoch Firthby by a local man, John Ross (although the first known records date from 1749) and was soon joined by his son Andrew. Eventually, the sons and grandsons of John Ross operated the Balblair farm and distillery until the last years of the 19th century until the sale of Balblair Distillery to Alexander Cowan in 1894. Cowan brings Balblair into the 20th Century by building the present offices, still house, mash house, kiln and barns.

After the launch of the Highland Railway Company rail line between Inverness and Ardgay in 1862, Balblair started to take advantage of its use and moved the distillery half a mile north to its current location in 1895. Unfortunately, due to the tough economic times, Balblair Distillery shut in 1911, with the last drop of whisky leaving the warehouse in 1932.

Despite a brief use of the building by the army, 1948 saw Robert James “Bertie” Cumming, a solicitor from Banff, purchase the distillery for £48,000, with production resuming just a year later and expanding with extra warehouses and the first steam boiler in 1964. In 1970 though, Cummings sold the Balblair Distillery to Hiram Walker, the company that later becomes Allied Distillers. This era saw the renovation of the distillery throughout the 1980’s until its sale to Inver House Distillers in 1996.

It was in 2007 that Balblair opted for the bold move to only release Balblair as a Vintage Whisky, with the first vintages released being 1997, 1989 and 1979 in March 2007. It’s said that “Each Balblair Vintage captures the essence of its year in a bottle. They’re only ever selected at the absolute peak of perfection. Handpicked, to represent the very best our Distillery has to offer”.

I’ve been lucky enough to enjoy some of the Balblair Vintages, so below, I give to you my tasting notes –

Balbair 1975 – 46%

Fresh citrus and coconut notes on the nose. Sweet and spicy on the palate with honey and fruits on the finish. Warming.

Balbair 1989 – 46%

Apple and raisin notes on the nose and then combines with spice flavours on the palate. A long, rich offering with raisin dominating throughout.

Balblair 1991 – 43%

Bold and fresh notes of honey and butter, with subtle cherry finding its way through. Soft green fruits on the palate creating a very dry, almost ash driven finish.

Balblair 1997 – 46%

Tropical fruits on the nose with apples, honey and vanilla coming through.  A hit of sweetness on the palate, but spice soon follows that creates a long, long finish.

Balblair 1999 – 46%

The second release of the 1999 that replaces the award-winning second release of the 1997 Vintage.
Honey and leather notes on the nose, with subtle hints of lavender coming through. Sharp lemon skin upon the palate, staying at the front of the mouth whilst the rest enjoys smooth vanilla and honey mixed with waves of bold spice. Long finish.

Balbair 2002 – 46%

Floral fruits on the nose with hints of vanilla and toffee following, A good mix of spice and sweetness on the palate with orange and lemons dominating.

 

 

Balblair 2004 – 46%

Bourbon matured. Light nose with no distinctive aromas coming through. Slight malt honey on the odd occasion. Dry orange with light, sweet hints available. A short and very dry finish.

Some fantastic whisky expressions here, and as you’d imagine, not the range that you would start to mix up a cocktail with. The odd drop of water would open up a few of the above, but personal rule is to enjoy it as it comes, and the Balblair range, currently, do not disappoint. A couple for the drinks cabinet won’t go amiss.

© David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast 2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog/sites author and owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.