Google New whiskies

Serge whiskyfun
Thousands of tastings,
all the music,
all the rambligs
and all the fun


Facebook Twitter Logo
Guaranteed ad-free
copyright 2002-2017


Hi, this is one of our (almost) daily tastings. Santé!

February 16, 2018


New whiskies

And very young ones, at that. Toddlers, even…

Ailsa Bay (48.5%, OB, +/-2017)

Ailsa Bay (48.5%, OB, +/-2017) Two stars
Already tried the first batch of this newish malt spirit by William Grant. It was okay (WF 70) but this is a newer batch. I believe it would be better that they told us about the vintage etc., we know it’s young anyway. Colour: straw. Nose: young sweet peat. It reminds me of all these young peaters from the mainland when they were young, AnCnoc, Benriach, Tomintoul… and others. Nice smoke, but it hasn’t quite got the ‘background’, in my opinion, it’s to be wondered if you do not need a heavier distillate. I find it extremely lapsang-souchongy, if I may, while some buttery notes are still there. Mouth: certainly not bad, nicely vegetal (chives? Agave? Tequila? ) and with touches of grapefruits. I have the feeling that they improved the recipe. Grass smoke. Finish: medium, not deep, with these pears that keep screaming ‘I’m young!’ Comments: it seems that they’re progressing. And after all, I’m often quoting the old Scots, ‘if the new spirit’s too good, the whisky will be crap’.
SGP:455 - 75 points.


Raasay new make (63.5%, OB, 5/10/17)
That’s right, Raasay Distillery’s new make! Tasting new make isn’t easy to do, because you have to try to translate your feelings a bit… Colour: very very very pale white wine. Nose: oh!!!!! No, really, oh!!!! White cherries, mirabelles, kiwis, crushed barley, hops, fresh almonds, tangerines, a box of assorted Turkish delights… In truth I’m not sure I’ve ever nosed a new make that was this talkative. Of course we’re not talking rum or mezcal here. With water: grist and mash and wort and everything, plus mud and earth, horse dung, hints of lilies, and, well, a well-cared-of cow stable. All nice, naturally. Mouth (neat): very thick and creamy, sweet (of course), yet grassy, yet bonbony, but with an excellent barely-y foundation. It is a fat spirit, and we always prefer fat spirits. Notes of sake, a good sign. With water: really good and fruity (forget about what the old Scots used to say), with plums and cherries. It’s still got this fatness that cannot not succeed on the long term. Finish: a little short, but all new makes are short. A tad petroly, a good sign as well. Comments: I won’t score it, as usual, all I’ll say is that I’m rather impressed. Watch them, they plan to launch their first whisky in 2020.
SGP:740 - (no score) points.

Oh while we’re doing new makes…

Asaka ‘New Pot’ (63%, OB, Japan, 7/2/17)

Asaka ‘New Pot’ (63%, OB, Japan, 7/2/17)
This from the Sasanokawa Shuzo sake and shochu factory. Those are the good people that helped Ichiro Akuto when he was building Chichibu (that was the expurgated version of the story). This mew make was bottled, I mean, bottled in a proper ‘commercial’ bottle, it’s not a distillery sample. Colour: white. Nose: a little hard after the Raasay, this one’s much shier, although there would be some elegance to it, with touches of apricots and peaches. Litchis. What’s sure is that it’s a lighter spirit. With water: a few more yeasty smells, and above everything, many more pears. Mouth (neat): again, a rather lighter style, more on sweet tinned fruits, but it’s enjoyable. More eaux-de-vie, less bread, to cut a long story short. With water: but-it-is-pear-eau-de-vie! Finish: medium. Williams pears anyone? An unexpected touch of salt in the aftertaste. Comments: a very fruity, very pear-y new make. It won’t get fat.
SGP:830 - (no score) points.

Nagahama ‘New Make’ (59%, OB, Japan, lightly peated, 2016)

Nagahama ‘New Make’ (59%, OB, Japan, lightly peated, 2016)
Another distillery that’s bottling their new make.  They’re located in the Shiga Prefecture. Colour: white. Nose: delicate and shy, starting with melons and going on with butter pears. It’s an even lighter style than that of Asaka. With water: the most sake-like so far. Did I tell you that I love sake? Damp hessian, raw wool, baker’s yeast, a touch of washing powder, Woolite… Mouth (neat): very similar to Asaka on the palate. Light, fruity, pleasant, eau-de-vie-ish, barley-ish… With water: and yet again, the yeastier side comes out, which we enjoy. Could you blend a good lager with some good sake? No, no apologies… Finish: medium, with excellent sweeter yeasts and notes of lemon. Or would that be those famous hops, Citra? Comments: not much when neat, but it started to talk when reduced using my trustworthy Vittel. Was that the ‘light peat’?
SGP:650 - (no score) points.

While we’re still in Japan…

Okayama ‘New Born Whisky’ (60%, OB, Japan, +/-2017)

Okayama ‘New Born Whisky’ (60%, OB, Japan, +/-2017)
This one from the sake makers Miyashita. I had enjoyed their new NAS a few months ago (WF 79). Now as an European, I’d say it cannot be both ‘new born’ and ‘whisky’, can it? But who cares, this is very micro anyway. Colour: white. Nose: some action! Crushed fresh almonds, green tobacco, green tea, and above everything, really a lot of olive oil. It’s not one of those fruity new makes at all, which comes as a surprise, really. Let’s see… With water: oh yes! Mud and petrol, Jamaican-rum style. Mouth (neat): you would think this is four or five years old. Green pears, smoked fish, lime, olives, and lemongrass. This is, in fact, very excellent. With water: smashing! Mud, tar, liquorice, salted olives, pistachios, oils… Finish: long, fat, phenoly, salty… Comments: totally impressed, that’s all I’ll say. Now if the Japanese could get rid of their extremely loose legislations, we’ll be most happy to quaff all these ‘Japanese whiskies’ that are genuinely Japanese, and not imported from Scotland/Canada/India/wherever. Just saying.
SGP:564 - (no score) points.


Mars ‘Tsunuki’ (60%, OB, Japan, 12/2016) This is non peated new make from Mars’ Tsunuki Distillery. Colour: white. Nose: there, we know that Mars make a beautiful whisky, and yet this new make is rather unimpressive, hot, with some rotting coconut and some dirty floor cloth juice. And yet, this will give some great whisky… With water: dirty waters, stale fruit juices. Great! ;-) Mouth (neat): extreme rotting coconuts and super-heavy eau-de-vie at 80% vol. Foooh… With water: better, a little easier… Finish: long and dirty, as it should be. Comments: making whisky is a dynamic game, you have to play with one of its main ingredients: time. This ‘will’ be good, provided they remain patient and don’t botox it using stupid new oak... But yeah, who am I?
SGP:462 - (no score) points

Nagahama ‘New Make’ (59%, OB, Japan, 2016)

Nagahama ‘New Make’ (59%, OB, Japan, 2016)
This is the unpeated version of Nagahama’s new make. Yes I know we should have tried this one first. And funny that they're allowed to call this 'single malt whisky'. Colour: white. Nose: a fresh, slightly smoky (still) spirit, with good dirt and good soot. Olives. Notes of burnt oak and artichokes. Why not. With water: more of all that. Gravel, concrete, not tons of pears. Then all on barley, with a hint of coconut water. Mouth (neat): fruity, and akin to millions of litres of new make that are resting elsewhere, I would say. Burnt pears, plums, grains, kirsch… With water: easier, sweeter, more Speyside-y, with more apples and pears indeed. A touch of pineapple. Finish: medium, rather sweet. Pears and apples. Comments: nothing particular to add. Or rather this, it’s hard to taste several new makes in a row.
SGP:540 - (no score) points.

I think we’re done.

(With many thanks to Chris at Sushi + Soul in Munich)






Whiskyfun's Home
Whiskyfun's Facebook page Whiskyfun's Twitter page Whiskyfun's RSS feed