QuasiVardar, Audley Strange and myself held the inaugural Whisky Apocalypse meeting in Oran Mor last night and it was a resounding success if I do say so myself. We sampled the delights of 5 malts, covering most of the Scottish regions and one Japanese 12 year old which did not go down quite as well as expected.
Here is what we had and my own thoughts on each drink.
1. Benromach Port wood Finish 22 yearold £4.20 per dram
A belter and a great start to the night, a rare drink to find in the shops and expensive at over 4 quid a go but even so well worth it and a great introduction to Speyside malts. The drink itself was heavy going and needed a fair amount of water to ease the fire and allow the real flavours to come out. Burnt rubber and Chocolate on the nose and a hint of burnt toast on the tongue (all good things by the way), possibly not for the faint of heart but a lovely warm sipping whisky.
2. Dalmore Cigar Malt £3.00
My favorite whisky and one which I wanted to let my friends drink was sadly no longer made Dalmore, the owners have replaced it with a 15 year old special reserve which for me is a real shame but such is life. On the nose? Well I’ve always thought of Christmas cake mix, before it goes into the oven all moist with that delicious rum and fruit combo. It tastes pretty similar too, a lovely warm drink and something to savour with nice cheese at the end of a meal rather than a drinking whisky on a night out.
3. Talisker 18 year old Amoroso Finish £3.20
A bargain at under £4 and what a belter, this whisky had it all going on, massive flavour from the Islands, smoke, tar and a real explosion in the mouth. Everyone really enjoyed this and it would in hindsight been a better choice for the end of the night rather than half way through. This would be a prime candidate for malt of the month but sadly it’s not that easy to get hold of and is over £50 making it too expensive for the gaming/drinking nights ahead.
4. Suntory Yamazaki 12 yearold Japanese Single malt £3.50
Sadly for the Scotch whisky industry in Scotland those cheeky wee Japanese have come along pinched our whisky taken it home, copied and well bugger me have they made a great drink here. There are a handful of Japanese malts kicking about but most are either mega rare or very expensive or of course both, this however is £35 a bottle and again under £4 a dram so well within the price range and a great drink. More of a drinking whisky than others we maybe should have started the night with this, sweet caramel and biscuit flavours and flourished with a small amount of water.
5. Ardbeg Airigh Nam Beist £4.00
This might be more than £4 might be less, I was by this stage a bit the worse for wear and frankly hammered. After some light ribbing from my learned friends that they had not had any belters, nothing to really challenge them, well fuck you I thought as I headed to the bar with thunder in my heart, The Ardbeg Beastie is a monster, full of all the peatie smoked madness you would expect from Islay’s finest distillery. I’m not a huge fan of peat whisky, they all kinda taste the same, the smoke tends to overwhelm everything else and maybe that’s the point and this whisky was all I expected it to be. Massive smoke and burnt wood on the nose, smokey fish and wood chipping on the mouth a hint of coffee and a drink to bring water to the eyes if sipped straight and in need of a lot of water to bring out the more subtle flavours and alas I was a bit pissed and so perhaps something was lost on me.
The night came to a head with the conclusion that we like whisky and it was a good idea to get together and drink whisky and talk bollocks, both of which we managed on an epic scale.
We have also decided that we should have another tasting session mid March to hammer out which should be our first gaming whisky.
Hopefully more troops can come out to play next time and with any luck all the chaps involved will be able to post up here and keep this bad boy running.