The three day Whisky Live Tel Aviv is kicking off today, with a nice selection of whiskys and some really interesting masterclasses, including a sold out “Macallan Tea Party” with the always informative and entertaining Patsy Christie featuring the Macallan Fine Oak 18-21-25, Dom Roskrow who’ll be delivering two masterclasses, one on new world whisky and one on wood and peat. Other masterclasses will be delivered by Robert Fleming, the master distiller for Tomintoul, Lomond Campbell – Bacardi’s global malts ambassador, Willie Tait of Jura, Aislinn O’Keeffe of Jameson, Chris Fletcher of Jack Daniels as well as some of the local talent, including Rani Cohen, Dudi Zats, Ilan Caspi and Adaya Lange. If the list of guests flying in to take part left you in doubt as to Isreal having joined the world whisky scene, I’ll just say this: There are two cask strength Whisky Live bottlings: a 7 year old Craigellachie and a 19 year old Tormore (which will be reviewed here).
I’ll be tweeting throughout the festival under the #WhiskyLiveTLV hashtag from @mbndavid and will post a full recap for each day.
To honor one of the featured whiskys in the Macallan masterclass, I’m posting my tasting notes for the Macallan Fine Oak 21 which I tasted at the London Whisky Show:
Macallan Fine Oak 21 Year Old (43% ABV, NCF, NC)
Appearance: Amber with thick legs.
Nose: Sweet sherry notes, cinnamon, honey, warm baking cake, hay and light spice.
Palate: Honey, sherry spices, hints of dried apricot, light pepper in a smooth and chewy mouth feel.
Linger: Warm and long with honey and sherry with notes of cinnamon.
Despite not being overly complex, there are shades of the interplay between sherry and bourbon oak here which are very pleasing and overall this is a very good and well put together whisky. Balance here is the name of the game.
It’s a shame that the age stated “oak” series are being retired in favor of the NAS 1824 range, which I found somewhat lacking in depth.