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

December 13, 2019


Good medicine

These fine drops to recover from our 15,000th. There will be some much more serious matters in the coming days!

The Promise (46%, Compass Box, blended malt, 2019)

The Promise (46%, Compass Box, blended malt, 2019) Four stars
This baby’s only available at the Golden Promise Bar in Paris. As usual with Compass Box, good blends start with good ingredients, namely Clynelish (yeah), Talisker (yeah yeah) and Caol Ila (yeah yeah yeah). Colour: white wine. Nose: there’s a bit of a fight in there at first nosing, each malt talking one at a time for a good two minutes. But everybody hugs and makes up after that long arrival, although I’ve got the feeling that Talisker is wearing the pants, with a doughy/coastal profile that’s a little fatter, and less peaty than that of Caol Ila. But I could be wrong, naturally. Mouth: more unity on the palate, and clearly a feeling of a ‘whole’. Good yeasty/peaty development with just touches of coconut from first fill bourbon, while Clynelish is slowly catching up with the peaters. Citrons and bergamots no do lies. Finish: long, more citrusy. Citrusy finishes and aftertastes always win it. Also a lovely touch of salt in the aftertaste. Comments: an excellent composition. Good folks who know their Clynelish, Talisker and Caol Ila will have even more fun ‘reading between the lines’.
SGP:455 - 87 points.

Nectar Grove ‘Batch Strength‘ (54%, Wemyss Malts, Batch 1, blended malt, 8100 bottles, 2019)

Nectar Grove ‘Batch Strength‘ (54%, Wemyss Malts, Batch 1, blended malt, 8100 bottles, 2019) Four stars
The original version at 46% was quite good (WF 82). Colour: gold. Nose: some wine of some sort has been in use here, as we find raisins and fruity herbal teas. Behind that, some youth, some ripe orchard fruits, and a little cigarette tobacco. Sweet focaccia, middle-eastern sweet bread... With water: we’re in a pastry shop in Milan or in Paris. Mouth (neat): this is very good, and you don’t even feel like adding water. Lovely brioche dough, orange blossom, fresh cinnamon rolls, a little marmalade, blood orange… Really very good! With water: this orange-y freshness is pretty insane, how did they do that? Panettone, cassata, baklavas, Turkish delights… We’re on holiday! Finish: medium, clean, perfectly constructed on all things oranges, and perhaps dates. Comments: did they add a little Kingsbarn? To think that there isn’t even an age statement.
SGP:651 - 87 points.

963 18 yo (53%, OB, Japan, Sasanokawa Shuzo, pure malt, mizunara finish, 320 bottes, 2019)

963 18 yo (53%, OB, Japan, Sasanokawa Shuzo, pure malt, mizunara finish, 320 bottes, 2019) Three stars and a half
Pure malt, so blended. This by the Yamazakura folks in Fukujima. They probably did not make this whisky and only sourced it, but the 963s I could try to this very day have been better than their rather poor ‘Yamazakuras’ that everyone’s buying just because of the cherry blossom on the labels (and because they’re told they’re Japanese). Are you following me? Oh and no, a finish in mizunara does not make just any whisky a Nippon whisky. Colour: deep gold. Nose: the mizunara is very loud. Sauna, teak oil, then puréed chestnuts, eucalyptus, camphor, then milk chocolate and balsa wood. I could probably be persuaded, to tell you the truth. With water: return to Earth. Malt, earth indeed, cherry wine… Mouth (neat): good, I’m afraid to say. Unusual notes of cedar wood (the mizunara, I suppose) and pine resins, then bitter marmalade and some kind of sweet curry, as well as sultanas. An amusing profile, shall we say. With water: no, it’s good stuff despite its unlikely pedigree. More cherry wine, a touch of metal ala Irish whiskey (is it Irish?) and good apples and oranges. Finish: rather long, sour and sweet, with a floral side. Wee hints of rose jelly, or loukoums. Comments: this is what some will call some intriguing whisky. In all fairness, I thought it’s very good.
SGP:551 - 84 points.







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