As the Covid pandemic grinds on into its sixth month, I joined 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: 6 October 2020
- Colour: pleasingly sun-tanned
Nose: like a healthy selection of complimentary fruit and nuts you might get in a classy hotel.
Palate: interesting, varied, wholesome – like the range of spa treatments on offer at said hotel.
Finish: gives you that “Eeeeh, that was nice” glow; relaxing but not exciting.
(Tamnavulin, 40%, no age stated, £22 from the supermarket)
- Colour: weak piddle
Nose: a musty attic where a substantial family of mice have been going to the toilet for the past few decades.
Palate: the gang of mice force open your mouth and take turns peeing on your tongue. Frankie the mouse say relax.
Finish: regret. This whisky is from the evil universe where your counterpart wears a goatee.
(Tamnavulin, 40%, 12yo bottled in 2005, bought at the time for £17.20 with a staff discount, which is frighteningly specific and well-remembered by our host…)
- Colour: a bit ‘meh’, like the kind of politics I wish we could return to
Nose: hints of liquorice, aniseed?
Palate: same as the nose, has the vibe of a vintage sweet shop.
Finish: initially slightly rough, like fine sand caught in machinery, but it doesn’t stop the machine.
(Nc’Nean, 46%, 3yo first release, £45 – or £48 if you get it in a box. Tonight’s pronunciations included “nuck-neen”, “knock-knee-an”, and “nuck-nyan”.)
- Colour: Donald Trump overdoing his makeup by smearing a Hershey bar over his face
Nose: coffee and chocolate orange
Palate: as smooth as Roger Moore’s pick-up lines in a 70’s Bond film
Finish: innuendo (“it goes down easily”), followed by “Nobody Does It Better” – favourite of the night!
(Carsebridge, 40.4%, 34yo grain whisky from 1982 before it closed in 1983, bottled in 2017; there are only 88 bottles left now so it’s no wonder it costs £225)
- Colour: insipid and weak like a government front-bencher
Nose: like the west coast of the USA right now
Palate: sweet and smoky, like a Care Bear with matches ambling carelessly through a sequoia forest
Finish: hot, like the biological hot zone that should be established around the White House. Grabs the throat like a hysterical White House staffer catching her daughter tweeting secrets to the public. It burns.
(Kilchoman, 56.4%, 9yo from 2011 and bottled in 2020, meant to be unpeated but came from a process where the equipment hadn’t been washed out after a peaty distillation? An exclusive for Royal Mile Whiskies, £95)