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Corked! (No, not that corked...)

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@Onibubba
Onibubba started a discussion

I opened up an Old Malt Casks bottle of Benrinnes last night. 21YO, in cask in 1979. It was on sale when I bought it for just under 70.00. Seemed like a deal. As soon as I started to pull the cork, I could tell I was in trouble. It was coming apart. I tried to be gentle, but it ripped right in half. The bottom half, still stuck in the bottle, was moist. There was no delicate operation I could perform in a hotel room to get it out. I had to push it in. I blew off as many cork crumbs from the top half as I could, and gave it a push.

Now what? Luckily, I had a couple of Duvel beer glasses (my favorite glass) with me, so poured the whisky into those. Then I cleaned out the bottle, and poured everything back in, trying to avoid any noticeable bits of cork.

I did not have a spare cork, so I placed a whisky lid (a Laphroaig tube lid) on top.

I know that this is not corked in the sense of "spoiled" beverage. That is a whole other issue. But I cannot shake the feeling that those little specks of cork are going to affect the whisky. Anyone have any experience with this?

10 years ago

4 replies

@Onibubba
Onibubba replied

@two-bit-cowboy Many thanks! Looks like a slow strain through a coffee filter is on the agenda for tonight.

10 years ago 0

@Nock
Nock replied

@Onibubba Let me guess . . . you picked up that bottle at Red Dog? Was there still a Bladnoch 22yo OMC right next to it? I saw it when I was in Nashville last, and almost picked it up. At the time the price was just under $90. I am VERY curious to hear what you think of that Benrinnes Old Malt Cask. When I was there they had several things form Provenance, Douglas of Drumlanrig, and The Classic Cask on sale. Is that still the case?

But to answer your question: My last bottle of Brora 21yo Old Malt Cask (not from Red Dog) had the exact same thing happen with the cork. Luckily, I opened it at home and was able to get it dealt with just like that link @two-bit-cowboy posted. I still had a large portion of cork in there and used this video to help me get it out: www.youtube.com/watch

How will all this effect the whisky? Well, this was my second bottle of that magical Brora Old Malt Cask (and I have a third still in reserve). I noticed that the liquid level was a little lower in the bottle that I opened then the one I have in reserve. Not buy much, but just a little lower. And i have a sample from my first bottle.

The corked Brora is fantastic. My first bottle sample (same single cask) is even better. Can't tell if it was because I had it open for over three years (that is how long it took me to drink it) or if something is not quite right with this second bottle. It is still amazing but probably 95% of that first bottle. Not sure if it has to do with the cork, the slow evaporation (it was in the bottle since 2002; your bottle was 2000 right?), or what. I still have hope that my last bottle (which seems to still have the original fill level) will not have a cork issue.

My guess is that your bottle will be similar. It is probably 95% (or more) of what it could be. If you don't like it, my guess is that is just 70's Benrinnes. Either way, it will probably benefit from a little oxidation. But that is totally a guess.

Seriously, please give us a review. I am dying to know what I passed up on.

Nock

10 years ago 0

@Onibubba
Onibubba replied

@Nock Correct! I think that it had a sale price of 79 or 69. The only other red tagged items I bought were a shit ton of Big Peat bottles for 39.99 ea. Woof. They also had the Provence bottles and some vatted double barrel (bowmore / HP maybe?). Good store.

This definately needs some air time. I was blown over by fusal alcohol at first, but nice vanillas began to work their way out. I'll try some this weekend and do a proper review, but I suspect you are right. This will need several months to "get right."

PS: Since you are in nashville and an Ardbeg fan, message me and I'll tell you where to find something you will like at another smaller store in town.

10 years ago 0