Three Ships 5 Year Old

3shipsfixed

The other night we went out in Tel Aviv to a wine bar with some couples we know, one thing led to another and only 2 of the guys showed up and we ended up leaving the girls at the wine bar and heading over to the Whiskey Museum, my new favourite venue. They’re not officially open yet, but are serving walk-ins as a way to make sure everything is working and get everything properly polished up. I’ve been there several times, the place can’t be beat for prices and selection (or service, atmosphere and food for that matter).

One of the really nice services they offer is that you can buy a bottle for the table at a reasonable price, and take home what you don’t finish. I’d already had two nice whiskies on the bar when the girlfriends decided to join us. I didn’t want to dig too deep into my pockets and I knew we’d be there for some time, so I got a bottle of one of the cheapest whiskies I’d found there so far.

I recently wrote about a limited edition, PX finished Three Ships, and how different it was from the rotgut I remember growing up in South Africa. What I had been avoiding however were the younger, widely available expressions of the stuff. The 5 year old recently appeared on the local market which was quite odd, and I have been quite curious about it.

It’s a blend, with the grain component being column distilled wheat and corn spirit and the malt component being made from peated barley, which is quite interesting. They don’t go into too much detail but they do say that some of the component whiskies are imported from Scotland, I’m going to assume it’s the peated component, but I could be wrong.

Aged 5 years. 43%ABV. 

Nose: Bananas. Vanilla twinkies. Custard. Woodsmoke. Earth. Wine gums. Cinnamon, the flavoring not the spice. A certain herbal note that reminded me slightly of  Rhum Agricole.

Palate: Bitter spirit. Light, smoky earthy note. Candied cherries. Cinnamon pancakes.

Finish: Short. Bitter wood. Woodspice.Light smoke. More banana, flavoring not fruit. A bit of vanilla.

Would I buy this: Yes

Would I order this in a bar: Yes

Would I drink this if someone gave me a glass: Yes

VFM: 4/5

This was quite a surprise. It wasn’t fantastic whisky, but for a 5-year-old, cheap, mass produced whisky, it had a really good amount of flavour to it to it. I would mark it down a little because while the flavours I really like were in this, they felt a bit weak, but heck it cost me the same as a bottom shelf Scotch blend (we’re talking Johnnie Red territory here) and I got a good amount of enjoyment out it.

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