Friday, May 30, 2014

Distillery Pagoda's in Kentucky. Diageo reveals plans to get back into Kentucky Bourbon

New distillery in Kentucky

Diageo announced yesterday that they plan to build a $115 million in Shelby County, Kentucky

Pagodas in Kentucky..

It's not long since they talked about reopening Stitzel-Weller, but these plans have been cancelled. Instead a brand new distillery in a better suited location has been planned. Stitzel-Weller, once rural is now located in suburbia Louisville. There is problems with watersupplies, locals complaining about black mold etc

Diageo's last operating distillery in Kentucky was Bernheim, which they sold to Heaven Hill in 1998. Since then they have been on the bourbon market with the Bulleit brand, which has been contract distilled, mainly at Four Roses

Bourbon is booming. Scotch is booming. It was quite predictable that Diageo would come back into Kentucky for a couple of reasons

1. With bourbon being so popular, it is not reliable to rely on external producers for supply. Everybody is having trouble to make enough whiskey for themselves these days, and want to keep the whiskey they do produce for themselves

2. Diageo needs ex-bourbon barrels for their scottish and canadian distilleries. With Suntory's recent acquirement of Beam, I guess Diageo got a little bit worried about supplies. At the moment Diageo is expanding several of their scottish distilleries and also building a brand new distillery next to Teaninich (as well as expanding Teaninich itself), so the demand for barrels and casks able to mature whisky will be high

Speeddramming the new SMWS outturn

Yesterday, Lars P, Dennis K, Steffen B and Peter L of the Danish Drinking Team went through the new SMWSDK outcome, in a less than 2 hour speed BLIND dramming session

Highlanders Bar in Aarhus and SMWS Brand Ambassador Thomas with the team

Here are our verdict - with our average scores and a few short words that were thrown about

1.182 - 85.5 (11yo Glenfarclas) Bourbon
17.38 -  84.5 (18yo Scapa) Light
39.89 - 85.4 (12yo Linkwood) Toothpaste
50.54 - 78.8 (23yo Bladnoch) White Wine
26.103 - 85.5 (10yo Clynelish) Vanilla
123.8 - 78.5 (12yo Glengoyne - Refill Port Pipe) Sulphur
13.46 - 84.5 (8yo Dalmore) Sour
3.223 - 87 (24yo Bowmore)
35.113 - 88 (10yo Glen Moray - 1st. Fill Chenin Blanc Hogshead) Marcipan
53.209 - 86.3 (18yo Caol Ila)
1.181 - 88 (11yo Glenfarclas)
10.78 - 82 (6yo Bunnahabhain) Too young
39.101 - 87 (23yo Linkwood) Woody, Grape Fruit
4.193 - 86 (13yo Highland Park) Toasted Oak
27.106 - 88 (13yo Springbank) Christmas, cloves, cinnamon
29.155 - 85.3 (18yo Laphroaig) Asparagus
53.208 - 87.3 (17yo Caol Ila)
3.221 - 88.3  (19yo Bowmore)
26.102 - 90.4 (29yo Clynelish) Very delicious

My personal favourites were the 26.103 (91), 27.106 (89) and 26.102 (90) while I had a terrible problem with 123.8 (74) which I found terible sulphured

The Bladnoch 50.54 really split the votes, the average of 78.8 was scores of 65-78-83 and 89. Dennis had bought this bottling, and he blind scored it 89 - seems like he will have to drink it himself alone though

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

A couple of new Bowmore's

This easter, or a couple of weeks after actually, I got a small present from Bowmore. A box with a chocolate easter egg (it was shattered in thousand pieces) and a couple of designer chocolates (more about them in a future post), as well as two miniatures of some of Bowmore's recent releases

1. Bowmore small batch 40%
Bourbon Cask Matured

The first thing I note is the low ABV and the print "Mit Farbstoff/Farven justeret med karamel". According to german and danish law, whisky and other spirits has to be labeled if any e150 (caramel colouring) has been added.

From the colour it doesnt look like much e150 have been added, unless the whisky was very pale from the cask. The colour is best described as light golden. I seldom refer to the colour of the whisky when blogging, but here is an exception

The peat is quite present in this. It's an archetype Bowmore, with a lot of floral notes mixed in tropical sweet fruits, resulting in a sweetish whisky,  and the low ABV makes this very easy drinking

Quite oily for the low ABV and a hint of vanilla in the background. The floral part of this Bowmore is quite present, much more than in recent independent bottlings I have tried, and just a bit too much for my taste

rating 81/100

No batch number on this miniature, but the letters L4141 is printed on the side which probably refers to something

2. Bowmore Darkest 15yo 43%
Sherry Cask finished

Also labeled with colouring warnings, but again, the colour is much the expected. My main problem with colouring whisky is when colour and taste doesn't much (the blue ketchup effect), and that is not the case with any of these two

The nose of this is very pleasant. I am very sulphur sensitive and whenever I get a sherried whisky which is untainted, I get a happy smile on my face. The nose is classical pure sherry mixed with peat. On the palate I get a bit of rubber, just the faintest. At this level I consider the rubber a benefit to a whisky, it's quite delicious. It also add some texture or mouthfeel to the whisky. This is very complex, with dried fruits, licorise and peat partying around my palate

Very good. A lot better than the Devil's Cask in my opinion, which also were a recent sherried Bowmore, which seemed to be very popular with everybody else but me.

rating 88/100

Leave this in the glass for a short bit, and it evovles into something even better. It gets more balanced, loose some bitterness and gains some nice spices. Very well done Bowmore