What happens when a whisky is re-tasted side-by-side with a few others about a month after the first taste? How consistent is my take on the nose, palate, and finish? Does ambience or adrenalin impact anything?
My last blog reviewed twelve whiskies tasted at the annual Whiskey Obsession Festival in Sarasota. I am about to return to Boston and thought it prudent to finish the five sample bottles that were lingering in my makeshift scotch cabinet.
This time I would conduct a blind tasting so that I would be as impartial as possible. There was only one sample bottle that I knew the contents. I set up the tasting with each bottle receiving its own glass; a bottle of water to cleanse in between tastes.
The final results were almost exactly the same as the original tasting. Needless to say, I was surprised at my own consistency regardless of the two very different tasting scenarios. All five whiskies are good-to-excellent and offer distinct (unusual to expected) flavor notes. I would enjoy having a bottle of each in my scotch cabinet.
This is what I have from this blind tasting round:
Fifth choice: Bastille French Whiskey Single Malt.
- Nose: distinct, oily honey and butterscotch
- Palate: middle of the road, oil comes to the front
- Finish: lightly lingering
Fourth choice: Glencadam 25YO.
- Nose: citrus, soft straw, marshmallow
- Palate: initial burn with a cinnamon burst
- Finish: What? Where did it go?
Third Choice: Glenmorangie Bacalta
- Nose: sweet hints
- Palate: easy fudge, roasted caramel
- Finish: a tip toe through thin mints
Second Choice: Kozuba Prologue
- Nose: fresh bark
- Palate: no malt, woody candy
- Finish: The wood stays and stays
First Choice: Lagavulin 2016 12 YO
- Nose: peat, medicinal
- Palate: peat and fire
- Finish: lingering peat and some sea surf
The only difference between this tasting and the original tasting is the switch of first and second choice. My guess is that the Kozuba was so off the chart that it superseded the Lagavulin. Yes, I am all about the peat but not exclusively!
Next week I am attending a Suntory Whisky and cheese pairing at the Formaggio Kitchen in Cambridge, MA. While I have put together an Infograph on whisky and cheese pairings, I have never paired Japanese whiskies with cheese. Ought to be a fabulous evening. Stay tuned for my blog on it.
I raise a glass to whisky adventures!