Monday, 23 September 2013

Wiser's 18 Years Old - Limited Release

Today is a beautiful fall day with lots of colours out. I find something about this kind of weather to be uniquely Canadian. It therefore makes sense that it is a day to sip on a fine Canadian Whisky. The musical accompaniment is The Beatles - Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band.

One might be tempted to point out that there really isn't anything Canadian about the Beatles. I beg to differ. In fact, On the Sgt. Peppers album Paul can be seen wearing an OPP (Ontario Provincial Police) badge on his shoulder. This was apparently given to him while on a Canadian tour. Some people like to point out that the second 'P' is obscured in such a way as to look like a 'D'. The badge would then say OPD: which in some circles stands for "Officially Pronounced Dead".

We are somewhere close to the 43rd anniversary of the start of the Paul is Dead Hoax (or conspiracy). This too has a Canadian context as I have heard one theory proposing that the McCartney replacement was from Ontario.

 The album artwork is full of references (or coincidences) that seem to indicated that Paul had indeed died. This is not the place to read about these signs but a quick Google search will reveal much. Besides the tying in of the Canadian theme, this is a solid album and probably in my top three of all time.

As for the Whisky... well let's get to it...

Nose: I get apples almost like a light cider as well as a delicious dose of warm bread pudding complete with vanilla sauce.

Palate: What an impressive time for "With or Without you" to kick in. A gentle prickle runs around the mouth. I am then treated to tastes of spice cake, apples and vanilla.

Finish: The finish I find to be quite short. I am left with a bit of that prickle. Before the fade the vanilla said one last goodbye.

Overall this is a fine whisky. I found the finish a bit short for my taste, but found the nose and palate to more than compensate for that.

Well have a fantastic night and thanks for reading. Time to return to the feeding of my senses.    

Monday, 16 September 2013

Ardbeg 10 Year Old

It's a rainy night here in the Yukon. It's the perfect evening for some Blues and a smoky whisky. For the listening pleasure I have chosen Albert Kings Funky London. The other senses will be warmed by the Ardbeg 10 Year Old.

Funky London is not an album. It's a compilation that highlights Albert Kings funk spirit. These songs were recorded in the seventies during his time with Stax records. Right off the hop the cover of James Browns "Cold Sweat" gets you moving. This record above all is the perfect cure for any rainy day. The music is upbeat while Albert lets you know how much worse it can always be. Just listen to "Bad Luck" and you'll know what I mean.

In keeping with the rainy day theme The Ardbeg's smokiness is reminiscent of a wood fire. Just the thing to keep you warm on a night like this.

Nose: No surprise here smoke hits right at the front. There is also lemon, salt and a sugary sweetness.

Taste: Smoke and leather take the lead while a twist of lemon zest is nodding quietly in the back. The mouth feel is spectacular.

Finish: The smoke is there throughout. It is definitely the lead character in this play. It is however accompanied by a really fine supporting cast. Namely the sweet sugariness that keeps the smoke from overwhelming your palate. This finish is long and maintains a comfortable presence.   

On a side note I have to admit that when I first saw this pale coloured liquid I was a little disappointed. I have long been drawn to the darker coloured whiskies. This was a good lesson for me to know that good whisky doesn't have to be dark to be flavourful.

Thanks for reading and stay warm.

Sunday, 8 September 2013

Bookers 7 years 1 month

Well on this day in Music History The Allman Brothers Band released Brothers and Sisters. It was their most commercially successful album, sitting at the top of the US charts for 5 weeks. That it is a fantastic album is undeniable. I however felt like listening to the Live at Fillmore 1971. One of the greatest live albums that I know of. The blues and rock jams are great for any occasion.

The Allmans being one of the quintessential southern rock bands I felt a bourbon would be fitting. I know, Bourbon is from Kentucky and The Allmans are originally from Jacksonville, Florida. Unfortunately this will have to do because I don't have any Floridian whisky in my collection. Come to think of it I don't know that any exist (if you do please let me know).

So without further ado... My Bookers True Barrel Bourbon tasting notes:

Nose: delicious. Actually I am surprised. It is better than the last time I tried it. and I was quite fond of it then if I do recall. For a whisky at almost 65%  it hardly has any burn. I get lots of caramelized sugar, cloves and a bit of citrus zest.

Palate: Wow. There is a lot of heat to this whisky. Through the burn I detected a lot of clove. The thickness of this whisky is almost syrupy. I was also able to detect a bit of wood and a slight hint of black licorice.

Finish: The finish is very long and dry. The cloves hang on strong while a woody smokiness is barely detectable in the background.

I found this whisky to be quite fierce and I though that it might benefit from some rocks. Please forgive me.

After Ice

Nose: There seems to be a slight floral tone added to the nose. I was also able to detect more fruit (can't tell what fruit specifically).         

Palate: With burn tamed I was able to detect a smokiness. Interesting, its like when you put the campfire out with water, a lot of smoke appears. Also added to the notes are herbal tones and some honey. This reminded me of Drambuie for some reason.

Finish; The finish is still long but the cloves are not over bearing any longer. They linger in the background while the smoke and wood take lead.

This is a very potent whisky. It is not for the faint of heart, nor is it easy to get to know. I do think that if one takes the time they may be pleasantly surprised.

 Have a great day.

Sunday, 1 September 2013

Ballantine's 17 Year Old

Since this is a blended whisky I decided that some fusion music would be fitting. So Miles Davis Bitches Brew it is. A fantastic album that uses many styles and "blends" them into a whirlwind of sounds and rhythms.

I think that it is important for me to clarify here that I am not saying that my musical recommendations are specifically chosen to accentuate the whisky in any way. The whisky will always have to speak for itself. I just really enjoy music and like to include it in almost every thing I do.

Nose: Delicious. I could smell this for hours. Initially I got molasses and then creamy chocolate with vanilla. On second try I got honey sweetness with some mouth watering fruit.

Taste: Smooth creamy chocolate with honey and wood. There is also a slight smokiness.

Finish: The finish is very long. The tongue tingles with a spiciness for some time. I mostly get oak, but the smoke remains in the background. I also detected a slight licorice tang.

Overall this is a good whisky. I think the nose is perhaps one of the most beautiful I've encountered, and the taste is nothing to complain about either. I did find the spicy tingle on the tongue during the finish to be just a bit much. Other wise thoroughly enjoyable.    

 Happy Labour day, and may all of your labour dreams come true.