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EPIC TASTINGS!

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By @Nozinan @Nozinan on 22nd Apr 2015, show post

Replies: page 15/17

@talexander
talexander replied

@cricklewood The Cragganmore was good - I usually have great appreciation for a peated Speysider - it just wasn't outstanding. No indication of quantities unfortunately.

about one year ago 2Who liked this?

@Victor
Victor replied

@markjedi1 that is a beautiful looking line-up! I'm sure it was a wonderful time.

about one year ago 1Who liked this?

@markjedi1
markjedi1 replied

@RianC As long as you clean up after yourself, drool away! laughing

about one year ago 1Who liked this?

@markjedi1
markjedi1 replied

@RianC Admittedly, it's been better.

about one year ago 1Who liked this?

@RianC
RianC replied

@markjedi1 - I think it's well-earned ... not everyday you turn 50 is it!?

about one year ago 0

@RianC
RianC replied

@talexander - Interesting. I was looking at this before Xmas but spent my budget elsewhere. Thinking that may have been wise now. One to try first, perhaps?

about one year ago 0

@talexander
talexander replied

@RianC Yes, I would say try it first - quite different from the usual Cragganmore.

about one year ago 1Who liked this?

@Hewie
Hewie replied

Maybe not epic in terms of some of your private tasting events but this was something I’ve been looking forward to for a looong time. This weekend gone was the highlight in the calendar for New Zealand whisky enthusiasts – the biannual Dramfest whisky festival. I’d been waiting more than 2 years for this! Mu wife and I together with two other couples flew down to Christchurch and stayed together in an Airbnb. Dramfest is held over two days although we just bought tickets for the Saturday (1 – 6 pm). Dramfest attracts over 70 companies and brands and has over 2500 attending. Visiting experts included Dave Broom, Charles Maclean, and many owners/brand ambassadors/distillers etc. I was stoked to chat with Stewart Buchanan (BenRiach/Glendronach), Alex Bruce (Adelphi/Ardnamurchan), Anthony Wills (kilchoman), Chloe Wood (Bruichladdich), David Allen and Ranald Watson (Springbank/Kilkerran) among others.

With sage advice from @Victor and @Tom92 I was ready for my first whisky festival. I knew I would be limited in what I could sample in the allotted time (and having recently started running and making dietary changes I fear my alcohol tolerance has decreased). Despite Rum being a featured spirit this year I focussed my attention on Scottish single malts – no world whiskies and no rums. I wanted to try stuff I could actually afford to buy a bottle of and the stuff dreams are made of – and I think I did an ok job of that. I had made a priority list of what I wanted to try, moving from unpeated to peated etc. Well that all went out the window pretty quickly! So, this is what I sampled (pretty much in this order):

Glenfarclas 17 43% – I expected more from it

Kilkerran 8 (the new 57.1% recharred Oloroso) – it was all I hoped for – and I went straight to the shop to secure my own bottle! Then back to the tasting halls

Springbank 15 46%

Springbank 10 Local Barley 56.2% – I prefer my Springbank with some dirty sherry

Benriach 21 46% – 4 casks (Px, virgin, red wine, bourbon)

Benriach 22 dark rum barrel 46% - surprisingly light and estery. Then they sprayed some new make spirit on my hands and it was super estery with fresh stonefruit

Glendronach 18 Allardice 46% - soft dark fruits, gentle spices and mouth filling

Glendronach 21 Parliament 48% - beautiful tannin-fruit balance. Then they sprayed some new make spirit on my hands and it was full of dark fruits – a perfect match for those sherry casks

Bruichladdich Classic Laddie 50%

Kilchoman 2010 48% - lovely medicinal peat and sweet barley

Kilchoman Loch Gorm 2019 46%

Kilchoman & Ardnamurchan ‘KilchArd’ collaboration 50% - interesting

Glenallachie 10 year Cask Strength Batch #3 58.2%

Glenallachie 2010 9 year 55.9% ‘Dramfest 2020 special bottling’ – Rioja Tinto cask matured

Signatory Ben Nevis 2010 9 year 46%

Signatory Deanston 2008 11 year 67.8% YES the angels got nothing!! (First fill sherry butt) This was hellfire and brimstone – a sulfur bomb – and fantastic! Wishing I bought a bottle

Adelphi Mortlach 25 year – this came from under the table and apparently I never saw it. One of my highlights!

I was so enthusiastic that I dropped and broke my glass and had to go get a replacement – felt like a right dick!

That Boutique-y Whisky Co Ledaig 17 Batch #7 49.4% - another highlight. I’d avoided this stand as I feel like they’re a bit naff but one of my regrets is that I only tried this one bottle there!

Cadenhead Tullibardine 1993 26 year 43.9%

Kilkerran Heavily Peated Peat in Progress Batch #2 60.9% - YES

Edradour SFTC 10 year 57.9%

Ballechin SFTC Bordeaux 2007 11 year 60.2%

Dramfest’s Dirty Little Secret 11 year secret Islay 57.9% refill sherry butt – (Caol Ila?)

Adelphi Bunnahabhain 2009 10 year 58.9%

Adelphi Teaninich 12 52.9% - dark and rich

Adelphi Benrinnes 52.5%?

Benromach 15 43%

Benromach Cask Strength Batch #1 2009/2019 56.8%

NZ Whisky Collection South Island Single Malt 25 year 40% - surprisingly light and fruity

Old Malt Cask Cask Craigellachie 2006 12 year 50%

Arran Lochranza Castle 21 year 47.2% - a bit disappointing

Bruichladdich Port Charlotte Islay Barley 2011 50%

Bruichladdich Octomore 10.1 5 year 59.8%

So it looks like I got through 33 different malts. I stopped part way for some amazing fried chicken and chips and had as much water as I could as I went. The end of plenty of drams got tipped into a bucket. Dinner later that night was a selection of artisan breads, charcuterie, and cheeses (but no more whisky). Highlights for me were obviously more than just drinking some great drams – but some whisky highlights were: the dirty kick ass Deanston by Signatory, the Mortlach by Adelphi, and Ledaig by Boutique-y (seems to be a trend here). Next time I will go for both days!

10 months ago 10Who liked this?

@Hewie
Hewie replied

others

10 months ago 4Who liked this?

@Hewie
Hewie replied

more

10 months ago 5Who liked this?

Expand image
@Hewie
Hewie replied

Plenty of options

10 months ago 3Who liked this?

@Hewie
Hewie replied

Represented

10 months ago 3Who liked this?

@Hewie
Hewie replied

Dinner is served

10 months ago 5Who liked this?

@paddockjudge
paddockjudge replied

@Hewie, Thanks for sharing. It is nice to see what the other side of the whisky world is enjoying.

10 months ago 3Who liked this?

@BlueNote
BlueNote replied

@Hewie That is a prodigious feat of tasting. Epic in every way. Good job mate. You’d better start training now if you’re going to do two days of that next year. astonished

10 months ago 5Who liked this?

@Hewie
Hewie replied

@BlueNote Ha ha yeah if I did two days then I'd be happy to go to one of the many masterclasses that are on offer at the same time. I didn't buy any tickets for the special sessions as they run at the same time as the main event is open and I just wanted to get a feel for it first time up. But some of those master classes looked superb. Next time......

10 months ago 7Who liked this?

@dloewen
dloewen replied

Got together for an Ardbeg flight with friends last weekend. Our getting together is not unusual, but to have assembled this fine group of Ardbegs is epic in my opinion. It would've been nice to have Grooves, or Drum, but living in Ontario has it's challenges! Haha. One of our group frequents Ireland regularly...which Ardbeg should be on his shopping list? Any suggestions?

10 months ago 9Who liked this?

@dloewen
dloewen replied

Here are my boys!

10 months ago 10Who liked this?

@Hewie
Hewie replied

@dloewen Nice. What was the groups verdict?

10 months ago 1Who liked this?

@BlueNote
BlueNote replied

@dloewen You and your boys are some serious looking maltheads. If I could add one to your Ardbeg array it would be Kildalton, hard to find and expensive, but killer. Rollercoaster would do in a pinch. Cheers.

10 months ago 1Who liked this?

@Victor
Victor replied

@dloewen I hear that there is a new Ardbeg Supernova. That would be the one I would go after.

10 months ago 3Who liked this?

@Nozinan
Nozinan replied

@Victor As would I. If it is half as good as the one I tasted once...

10 months ago 1Who liked this?

@Nock
Nock replied

@dloewen That is THE classic line up in my opinion! And those guys look "peat happy." Those bottles all look like the new line up. If you happen to have batch codes (laser codes on the bottom left back) I would love to hear them. I have had recent experience with a few:

Ardbeg TEN 46% L70139 04/06/2018 18005347 07:26 = really good easily in the high 80’s

Ardbeg Uigeadail 54.2% L2354025 11/04/2019 19003492 14:58 = a very good example. I opened this bottle in January and had to rebottle it by the end of February. I was down to only 200mL. Great stuff. Low 90’s.

Ardbeg An Oa 46.6% L69054 24/10/2017 17010061 10:23 = Uninspired and unimpressed. I would score it low 80’s at best.

Ardbeg Corryvreckan 57.1% L70350 16/03/2018 18001960 11:31 = low 90’s. Also a good example but I have had much better.

@Victor are you talking about the Ardbeg Supernova SN2019? Or have you heard rumors about a SN2020? I managed to miss out on the SN2019. But from everything I have read it doesn’t seem to have lived up to the older releases. I have far more thoughts on the ongoing releases of the Supernova line . . . I should probably share that in a different thread.

10 months ago 0

@Nock
Nock replied

@dloewen what Octomore is in the background? 8.?

10 months ago 1Who liked this?

@Victor
Victor replied

@Nock I have heard only of the 2019 release, but yes, if it has come and you didn't get any immediately, chances are you won't find any later.

10 months ago 1Who liked this?

@cricklewood
cricklewood replied

@Hewie wow thanks for sharing that epic day, it's good to have a strategy when going to these type of events to avoid being overwhelmed, spittoons are your friend, it's a shame to throw whisky away but a shame to be too buzzed to remember much.

Looks like the independents were the clear favourites for you that day!

10 months ago 2Who liked this?

@TracerBullet
TracerBullet replied

@Victor @Nock When looking for the Ardbeg Blaaack, the store I purchased from still had a few bottles of the SN2019. I am not sure of the price as it wasn't on my radar. I have heard that the first Supernova release was the best and each subsequent release has not been quite as good as the previous release. That said, they are all still supposed to be impressive. I hope it's true!

10 months ago 2Who liked this?

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