|Spirit of Islay
Joined: 28 Aug 2005
Location: Definitely not 55.640489,-6.107687
|Posted: Sat Jun 10, 2006 3:06 pm Post subject: 9th June Newcastle SMWS tasting
|Once again myself and the good woman spent a pleasant evening in the company of the SMWS tasting team at The Vermont Hotel in Newcastle .
First up was a 16yo Highland Park ( 4.105 , Highland Island, 59.9% , outturn 545 Bottles , £46) , A bright bronze from a sherry butt , I got Struck matches , Edinburgh Rock and slight smoke from the nose , whereas Mel picked out Candied Peel . She found it sweet and oily on the palate , I found it quite peaty , sweet and Menthol Cigarettes . Itís finish was long and smoky to me , Mel got liquorice sticks .
Not a bad Highland Park a lot peatier than I can remember previous ones .
Next up was the star of the evening for us , itís not often you get offered a 40yo malt on a tasting and I bet itís not often you get one like this . 1.131 (Speyside Spey , 40yo , Glenfarclas , 53.9% , outturn 152 bottles , £138 ) , from a hoggy a polished bronze in colour .we picked up Cola cubes , lots of fruit , super glue and varnish in the nose . The Palate was unbelievable , Hot , peppery , spicy , syrup and citric fruit . the finish was long and peppery . A sublime malt for itís age , awesome as Mel put it . Someone also wrote Iíll have 2 , buy this for Mel Ė she really deserves it at the end of my notes ÖÖwonder who ?
The third Dram of the night was another Speysider 41.36 (Spey , 24yo , Dailuaine , 44.8% , outturn 12 bottles ,£62) . 12 bottles ? they donít know how eitherÖ. From a Bourbon hoggy , bronze in colour , the nose was coconut and cherries , cherries in liqueur . the taste to me was dry and leathery , the better half got dry and musty . the finish was medium dry . A very dry whisky to me , not one of the best .
Now it was time to head to Islay for the last 2 drams , first off was a young Ardbeg (33.62 , 7yo , 58% , 865 Outturn , £42 ) , amber from a Gorda cask (600litre Capacity) , it wasnít the finest example of the distillery .Smoke and burnt rubber on the nose , though not as spirity as some young unís but still a tad too sherried for my liking , it was very smoky and peaty on the palate . The finish was long and sherried with slight rubber and sulphur . With water and a little while to stand it mellowed out quite a bit .
Last up was a 25yo Caol ila ( 53.98 , 25yo , 60.4% , outturn 271 , £64 ) , Pale gold from a refill hoggy .
The nose was very weak at first compared to previous 25yo Caol ilas but it was very medicinal (germolene) , peppery . Itís taste was very similar , loads of germolene and it had a very long finish .
Possibly one of the strongest line ups Iíve seen at a members tasting , The Farclas was the undoubted star of the night , definitely the best Speysider around , still havenít had a bad one !
This was Stephens last tasting in Newcastle , heís heading to pastures new and will be sadly missed at the SMWS members tastings .
Homer's Hypothesis - One can never own too many Ardbegs.......
And a dedicated Islay Forum !!!!