Archive For December 31, 2014

2014 in Perspective – And the Best of the Best!!

By |

2014 in Perspective – And the Best of the Best!!

2014 was a hell of a year! I started Malt and Oak in the very last days of April as a means of talking about my personal whisky journey while providing an “objectively subjective” view on the world of whisky and of the expressions I’m tasting, and as a way of integrating more deeply in…

Read more »

To Nicely Counter Yesterday’s Sherry Cask 1998 Laphroaig, a Bourbon Cask of the Same Vintage

By |

To Nicely Counter Yesterday’s Sherry Cask 1998 Laphroaig, a Bourbon Cask of the Same Vintage

Yesterday I reviewed a sherry matured 1998 Laphroaig, and today I review a same vintage Laphroaig matured in a bourbon cask, bottled for Aquavitae in 2011. It’s interesting to note that while the sherry matured Laphroaig has no vinegary notes, this one has them in abundance. This being the first Malts of Scotland bottling that I’m…

Read more »

Ultimate Laphroaig 1998 – Another Sherry Matured Laphroaig

By |

Ultimate Laphroaig 1998 – Another Sherry Matured Laphroaig

Earlier this year I was in Berlin, and bought a bottle of the Ultimate Laphroaig 1998 at cask strength (reviewed here). This cask was bottled just a few months short of its 14th year. At the end of last year, Dutch bottler van Wees released sister cask 700354 at 46% and my friend Erik Olink sent me a…

Read more »

A Sister to Yestrday’s Stunner – SMWS 39.92 Linkwood

By |

A Sister to Yestrday’s Stunner – SMWS 39.92 Linkwood

Going through my tasting notes I just realized that yesterday’s 39.99 and the 39.92 are both ex bourbon hogsheads distilled in 1990. The 39.99 was distilled in April 1990 and the 39.92 was distilled in October 1990 and was exclusive to the Canadian market. Linkwood is a distillery that plays a part in many of Diageo’s…

Read more »

A Visit to the SMWS London – Five Drams, a Steak and a Review of a Divine Linkwood

By |

A Visit to the SMWS London – Five Drams, a Steak and a Review of a Divine Linkwood

My friend Richard Barr (@BarrRichard) is a miracle worker. The Society in London has a monthly event in which you get a steak dinner and five drams out of the new outturn, and like all society events, this one sells out quickly. I get to London only once a year or so, but Richard – a…

Read more »

A Bunnahabhain Like No Other – Douglas Laing Old Particular Bunnahabhain 16

By |

A Bunnahabhain Like No Other – Douglas Laing Old Particular Bunnahabhain 16

The warehouses at Douglas Laing hold single cask wonders, and Fred chooses his casks well. One of the Douglas Laing offerings at the London Whisky Show was this beautiful bourbon cask matured 16 year old Bunnahabhain I tasted at the show but wasn’t able to take notes for. There was also a Deanston 20 and…

Read more »

Staying in Japan – Yoichi 10

By |

Staying in Japan – Yoichi 10

Yamazaki is Japan’s oldest distillery, but Nikka’s Yoichi is the most “Scottish” distillery in Japan. It’s located near the sea on the west coast of the northern island of Hokkaido, in conditions that are close to those of the western coastal Highlands (think Oban or Adelphi’s new Ardnamurchan) or even Islay, and still use direct…

Read more »

Rounding out Yamazaki week with the Yamazaki 18

By |

Rounding out Yamazaki week with the Yamazaki 18

The Yamazaki 18 is a highly acclaimed whisky. It has much more sherry matured whisky than the 12, yet retains the characteristic “vanilla-orange” florals of  the Yamazaki. Yamazaki 18 (43% ABV) Appearance: Bronze with thin legs. Nose: The telltale Yamazaki floral-orange-vanilla note is clearly there, with a deeper sherry. Sultanas, cinnamon, light clove with light…

Read more »

Yamazaki Sherry Cask – Is it the Really the Best Whisky in the World?

By |

Yamazaki Sherry Cask – Is it the Really the Best Whisky in the World?

Torben is a close friend of mine. Yes, we have yet to meet in personam, but we’re Facebook whisky friends, and share similar professional backgrounds. And he’s a great guy! We have a pretty constant exchange of samples going back and forth, and at any given time there’s usually a package en route from one of us…

Read more »

Yamazaki Distiller’s Reserve – The Japanese go NAS, and the Result Might Surprise You!

By |

Yamazaki Distiller’s Reserve – The Japanese go NAS, and the Result Might Surprise You!

The Yamazaki Distiller’s Reserve is the new entry level NAS Yamazaki, now placed at the €50 mark the Yamazaki 12 occupied not too long ago. This is an excellent Speyside impostor that will have you wondering if Yamazaki and Glenlivet aren’t working together.  It’s young. In fact, Suntory says that it was created to showcase…

Read more »