Whisky 2018 – 105-111 – Shinanoya Tasting

Massive Shinanoya whisky tasting thanks to the Elysian in Melbourne. Some real cracking drams, the Coopers Choice wasn’t on the tasting, just felt like an extra.

105 – DOUGLAS LAING OP CRAIGELLACHIE 1995 SHERRY BUTT 20YO 700ml 59%
Nose – rubber, chocolate, mint, dust, honey, red wine cask
Palate – brown sugar, roasted almonds, hay, sherry, dark caramel, musk, caramelized apples
Finish – musk, brown sugar, cream

106 – DUNCAN TAYLOR DIMENSIONS LAPHROAIG 1997 HOGSHEAD – 18YO 700ml 52.8%
Nose – ham and pineapple pizza, custard, oysters, barnyard
Palate – leaves, nuts, green sticks, honey, butter, roasted garlic
Finish – medicinal, glue, salt

107 – GLENDRONACH 1995 PX SHERRY PUNCHEON #4029- 20YO 700ml 55.2%
Nose – heavy brown sugar, dried apricots and peaches, old butter, green pepper, tobacco
Palate – caramel fudge, brown sugar, musk sticks, manuka honey, salt
Finish – melted butter and caramel sauce

108 – HUNTER LAING OMC BOWMORE 2001 REFILL HOGSHEAD – 13YO 700ml 57.3%
Nose – honey, old leaves, glue, yeasty dough, rosemary crackers, lemon pith
Palate – tropical fruit, kiwi fruit, ash, medicinal, minerals
Finish – heather, salty, burnt matches

109 – BERRY BROS RETRO LABEL CLYNELISH 1997 HOGSHEAD – 17YO 700ml 47.1%
Nose – honey, aspirin, mandarin zest, passion fruit jelly, granita biscuits, waxy
Palate – fruity, waxy, red frogs, apricots, pear juice, chicos, peaches, honey
Finish – grapefruit pith, salt, slight smoked ham

110 – KILCHOMAN 2009-2015 OLOROSO SHERRY BUTT FOR SHIMAJI PEN – 5YO 700ml 59.9
Nose – corn chips, smoked fish, barn yard, pickled onions, honey, dusty, lemon zest
Palate – honey, great mouth feel, ashy, pepper, sushi rice, blown out candle
Finish – old apples, pencil shavings, chlorine, melted cheese

111 – The Coopers Choice 1995 Benrinnes port finished 18 years cask 9547
Nose – cream, tropical fruit, toast and honey, wax, apples, raspberries, rock melon
Palate – waxy, chewy, fennel, cream, apricots, egg whites
Finish – salt, cream, old apples, slight woody,

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Whisky 2018 – 13-15

13 – Berry Brothers & Rudd 1997 Ben Nevis Cask 27 bottled 2014
Nose: rich and juicy, intense orange, bitter chocolate, hand cream
Palate: butter, tobacco, mustard fruits, cream, dusty, chocolate, caramel chews
Finish: cream, bitter cocoa, rocks

14 – Hidden Spirits 2004 Ben Nevis 13 Years Cask BN417 “Heavily Peated”
Nose: hand cream, old coals, flint, green grass, potato chips, sweat but not in a bad way
Palate: crisps, savory, cream, juicy stone fruit, banana cake
Finish: smoked cream, ash, fallen leaves

15 – The Whisky Agency and Three Rivers 1998/2016 Ben Nevis 50.9%
Nose: honey, aspirin, salted butter, cake mix, orange zest
Palate: salted butter, cream, passion fruit vine, leather, sight rubber, jasmine tea, pound cake
Finish: burnt butter, churned butter, cream, tea tannins

Whisky 2017 – 178-183 – Suntory Tasting

178 – Yamazaki 10
Apricots and cream, leather, sarsaparilla, kiwi fruit. Dry, ginger biscuits, fruit cup, grilled pineapple.

179 – Hokuto
Egg whites, plastic, peanuts, chocolate, toasted grains, chocolate mousse, peanut brittle. Leather, soap, tobacco, passionfruit vine, leather.

180 – Yamazaki Mizunara Cask 18 Years
Apples, lemonade, boot polish, grape jelly, yeast buns, kiwi fruit, orange blossom water, cream in water, instant coffee grounds. Green wood, tobacco, menthol, rubber.

181 – Yamazaki Distillery Limited 2015
Honey, sponge cake, strawberry jam, leather, apricot, rubber. Rubber, vanilla, slightly medicinal, massive vanilla finish, jammy, dry cinnamon, passion fruit vine, tobacco, rock melon.

182 – Berry Brothers 1990 26 year old Craigellachie by Whisk-e for Ginza Zenith
Candle wax, stone fruit, a galvanized fence on a hot day, cheap caramel lollies, hand cream. Old whisky, cream, old apples, wax, cloves, ice coffee, grape skins.

183 – Glengoyne Single Cask 1985 21 Years, Cask 629 *
Brown sugar, orange zest, apple crumble, old apples, wood polish, shaving cream, rubber, maple syrup, soy sauce, musk. Rubber, dark chocolate bullets, old apples, plain corn chips, dry cinnamon, old sun drenched rubber, golden syrup.

Whisky 2017 – 139-141 – Baxters Inn, Sydney

Traveling for work again. Had a chance to finally get to Baxters Inn in Sydney. Some great whisky there but these places like Boiler Maker house in Melbourne and The Gresham in Brisbane only ever are really able to cater to the whisky nerd when it is quiet. I had a good chat to some of the staff before the throngs arrived and saw some of their lovely older bottlings in their whisky room but it’s a busy busy drinking barn – difficult to enjoy a dram. 

How good is old Bowmore! 

139 – Littlemill 1988 Cask 57 25 Years Berry Bros
Shortbread, cream, vanilla, plastic, new make. Fresh apricots in caramel sauce with ice cream, passionfruit vine, hand cream, salt.


140 – Bowmore 17 (1990s bottling)
Honey, fruitcake, salt, hay, barnyard, chocolate milk, band-aids, dusty butter. Honey, salt, raisins, bandaids, green peppercorns, clover, hazelnuts, pencil shavings. 


141 – Glendronach Olorosso Sherry Butt Cask 76, 1992 23 years
Bubblegum, rhubarb, swimming in melted butter, mushrooms, dates, hazelnuts butter, brown sugar. Chocolate, buttter, wood, salt – a little underpowered for a single cask Glendronach. Eventually  butter, crushed ants and flapjacks on the finish. Great nose but a disappointing Glendronach single cask. 

Whisky 2016 – 47-50

47 – Glenfarclas Whisky & Wisdom bottling 2007
Musk lollies, leather, glue, honey, maple syrup, sarsaparilla and chocolate. Short, hot and angry, wood, maple, cream, butter, marshmallows.

48 – Berry’s Laphroaig 1997 Cask 48
Oil paints, autumn leaves, salty caramels, plasticine. Honey, smoke, bitter caramels, sweet mint and basil, cream and leaves.

49 – Lagavulin 18 Feis Ile 2016 Bottling Bottle:5916 (American Oak Hogsheads & Bodega Sherry Butts)
Fresh, zesty, red apples, butter cake, autumn leaves, just the right amount of oiliness. Apples, autumn leaves, saltiness, cream, paint. Really well balanced.

50 – SMWS 72.47 Burnt Spotted Dick (Miltonduff)
Cottee’s caramel ice cream sauce, glue and orange zest, candy apples, formic acid, pina colada, pineapple upside down cake, vanilla essence, white pepper, creme caramel, slight Rosemary. Juicy grilled pineapple, toasted coconut, vanilla pudding, pain aux raisins, slight sweet rubbery notes.

Whisky 2015 – 94-95

94 – Heartwood Devil is in the Detail
Marzipan, toasted macadamias, cocoa, milk chocolate. Peppery, salty and intense vanilla cream. Had to add water it’s beautiful but really needed to chill out. With water it’s more floral on the nose with the vanilla poking through. Ok this is a weird one paper bark trees, fruit cake dripping in brandy, roasted capsicum.

95 – Berry’s 1984 Benrinnies bottles 2011
Caramel, glue and honey, cloves, cucumber in gin, hazelnuts. Warm quince cake, dry spices. Pretty bloody good.

Whisky 2015 – 8-11

8 – Berry’s Glen Turret 34 Years
Chocolate, salt water, formic acid, a fruity sweetness I can’t quite place – maybe Kiwifruit. Oatcakes, fruity, lighter and friendlier on the palate than I expected. Finishes with vanilla and gooseberry.

9 – CV Hazelburn Singlemalt
Glue and brown sugar, kinda reminds me of rum with a (good) sickly sweet element. Banana and yeasty.

10 – Benromach – 10 Year Cask Strength
Flinty, herbaceous, caramel, salt, pipe tobacco and chocolate. Slight peat, sage and thyme, slight caramel sweetness and a salty finish.

11 – Kilchoman Port Cask
Wow! What a nose this things has. Loads of caramel, toffee apple a whiff of peat. Peanut brittle, olive oil, dry green bracken, smoked paprika, roasted peanuts.

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