Sorry about the fairly long silence, I was on holiday for a week and had a pretty hectic time before that. Anyways, back into things. For the past few years I’ve been following a few friends who have participated in the annual Blind Tasting Competition by the Dutch Usquebaugh Society (https://levenswater.nl/btc-2017/). While essentially a Dutch club, the competition is open to participants from many countries. This year I decided to join in.
This is a notoriously difficult competition with all kinds of tricky bottlings, so I’m not looking to score big here. It’s just a lot of fun to try things blind, it can change a lot about what you think you like and dislike in a whisky. So over the next 2.5 weeks I’ll try to update on my progress here (18 whiskies in as many days so not easy but will try my best). Points are awarded for guessing the correct distillery, age, region and ABV, but the guess has to be an existing bottle.
Anyways this one is from Benrinnes distillery in the Speyside region whose output is largely used in blends. This one was bottled by Whiskybroker.
Initial impressions: Young, Speyside/Highland ex bourbon (refill?), high ABV.
Guess: I didn’t like this one and it reminded me a lot for some reason of an 11 year old Old Pulteney I recently tried from Cadenhead which I also didn’t like. So I went with that. So no points for me. (https://www.whiskybase.com/whiskies/whisky/93257/old-pulteney-2006-ca)
Aged 19 years. 50% ABV. No colourant added, non-chill filtered and bottled from cask #906.
Nose: Very dominant peach & lychee note. Green herbs. Bananas. Floral. Hay. Light honey.
Palate: Tropical fruit and then a radish-like bitterness. Then some honey and a slightly unpleasant cardboard note with lots of brine.
Finish: Long. Brine. Cardboard. Green herbs. Grass.
Would I buy this: No
Would I order this in a bar: No
Would I drink this if someone gave me a glass: No
I wouldn’t have had much chance guessing the distillery as I’ve only tried maybe two whiskies from there before, and not recently, but I was somewhat shocked by the age and ABV as it felt a good deal younger and more active. Like the Pulteney which I thought it was, not a bad whisky in any sense, just really not appealing to my tastes.