Whisky tasting notes: July 2020

During the Covid lockdown I’ve joined in another online whisky tasting…

My standard disclaimer: I know nothing about whisky. I jot down how each one makes me feel (in my own way), and it’s entirely possible if I tasted a particular whisky again I’d come to a completely different conclusion (depending on my frame of mind.) Regard these notes more as an exercise in creativity than a comment on each dram!

Whisky tasting notes: 16 July 2020

Whisky 1a)

  • Colour: pale, like it dodged the sunlight
    Nose: nail varnish and liquorice
    Palate: oddly medicinal, like being told off by a stern Victorian nurse; you don’t know what you did wrong but you’ll never do it again
    Finish: getting kicked out of hospital because you didn’t get well quickly enough
    (Glenmorangie, 10yo 40%, £37 in Tesco)

Whisky 1b)

  • Colour: pale, like my complete lack of tan
    Nose: nail varnish and flowers
    Palate: warm and sharp, like a nurse who says in a soothing voice “Now this won’t hurt” before jabbing you with a needle
    Finish: being sneakily wheeled out of the hospital while you’re still unconscious
    (Glenmorangie, 10 yo 46% from 1992, £90)
  • The first two felt like they were both playing dead, the way you’re supposed to when a wild animal attacks and you want it to get bored of you and move on.

Whisky 2)

  • Colour: so white it whinges about having to wear a face mask whilst shopping
    Nose: faintly smoky
    Palate: like licking a sweaty alien. Old. Weird. Blue cheese and walnuts. Hints of leftover pizza and candy.
    Finish: tangy, funky, surprising, confusing, interesting (in a good way). I have no idea what just went on in my mouth.
    (Dumbarton, 25yo 46% from the late 60s, bottled in the 80s or 90s; this distillery doesn’t exist any more, making this a spirit from a ghost distillery…)


Whisky 3)

  • Colour: this would be stopped and searched by the police without cause
    Nose: chocolate, orange, liquorice, caramel
    Palate: cherry cola, having your mouth set on fire, and then taking part in a tickle fight. Sweet and fiery, like the plucky heroine’s sidekick in a Disney film.
    Finish: unicorn farts and the dreams of a toddler
    (Bourbon, 24yo 50% from 10-20 years ago; distillery unknown)

Whisky 4)

  • Colour: ordinary and unassuming like the perfect Mata Hari
    Nose: an epic duel on the edge of a volcano
    Palate: energetic, fast-paced, fiery, engaging, compelling!
    “You underestimate my power!”
    “Don’t try it, Anakin; I have the high ground!”
    Finish: I like this one! Just the perfect amounts of smoky, spicy and caramelly
    “Lord Vader… ri-i-i-i-i-i-ise!”
    (Caol Ila Lady of the Glen, 8yo 57% guess to be about £80) – holy shit, this is the first Caol Ila I’ve ever enjoyed; never expected that!


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