Klubb23 is a whisky society (they call themselves a ‘brodirhood’) of only 23 members. They are connected to the Belgian club BYOB-C, of which Dominic is also one of the founders. Klubb23 currently has three releases out: a Blair Athol, a Deanston and a Croftengea. So let’s give those a go. This 4 years old (!) Blair Athol was bottled in collaboration with Archives and matured on a first fill bourbon cask from Koval, that craft distiller from Chicago. Interesting.
Oh! This nose certainly takes some getting used to. Quite sharp and herbal with a big sour note, a truckload of vanilla and a big box of strawberry flavored bubblegum. Guimauve! Always good imho. Then a basket of Golden Delicious apples, rhubarb marmalade, caramel and pineapple cubes. A drop of lemon juice to round things out. A bit weird, but certainly not unpleasant.
The arrival is pretty alcoholic, obviously. But it does not need water. It’s nicely warm and prickling, but not scorching. Nicely sweet on white fruit (apples, pears, but also some white peach), a twig of mint and bread dough. A bitterness appears. Quinini? The pith of a grapefruit, rather. Or the taste you get when biting down on a banana peel. Try it. The spices give it some oomph. Earty notes and raw barley sugars reveal the young age.
The finish is somewhat astringent, I have to confess. Bitter, dry and piquant on cinnamon and aniseed with a welcome fresh note of mint.
Young (too young perhaps?), bizarre but quite daring. Amusing tasting session, to say the least. Thx, Dominic.