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Getting Creative: Vattings

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By @Victor @Victor on 17th Apr 2011, show post

Replies: page 7/10

RikS replied

@RianC any particular one you'd recommend? And if so, why?

2 years ago 0

@RianC
RianC replied

@RikS - I'm new to Ardmore so maybe not the best person to offer advice on it. Currently enjoying an 8 year old SC IB from Douglas Laing that is very enjoyable. I also have a couple of bottles of the NAS Legacy which is cheap as chips round here. If you can get them I'd suggest something like those? I've heard the traditional is decent but not sure if it's still about? My plan was to open the Legacy first but my impatience to start my blend got the better of me. I'm impressed with how smokey this malt is without being medicinal (compared to Islay) or ash tray like. It's a dense sweet smoke that's quite unusual. In fact, I'll stick my neck out and say that if this had Caol Ila or any other big Islay hitters name on the bottle it would be being raved about (and triple the price . . .)

I'm sure others could offer some alternative choices?

2 years ago 0

RikS replied

@RianC interesting. The legacy, as I'm sure you know, is regularly on sale - checked now and it's £20 at asda...!

2 years ago 0

@paddockjudge
paddockjudge replied

This evening, enjoying Glenlivet 21 YO Archive and Macallan Cask Strength, extremely enjoyable on their own and extremely enjoyable when coupled. Surprisingly, this combination induces what I have coined the whisky pop rocks effect, a tingling sensation, effervescent-like effect on the tongue...go figure. Highly recommended.

2 years ago 1Who liked this?

@Robert99
Robert99 replied

Sunday night, I mixed Glenfarclas 105 (65%) with Jim Beam SB (25%) and Glenmorangie Original (10%). The result surprised me because it was kind of close to a Macallan Edition. It was the end of my bottle of Farclas 105 but I may buy another one even if only to repeat that experience.

2 years ago 3Who liked this?

@paddockjudge
paddockjudge replied

I often blend whisky from my cabinet, sometimes the result is a pleasant surprise. Tonight, two experiments.

Chivas Regal 12 YO 30 ml, Glendronach 12 YO 30 ml, Uigeadail 10 ml. Soft, dry, light fruits, peppery exit. Very pleasant.

Glenfarclas 105 30 ml, Johnnie Walker Green 15 YO 30 ml, Uigeadail 5 ml. A touch dry, good mouthfeel. Sherry forward with a whisp of smoke

2 years ago 1Who liked this?

@Nozinan
Nozinan replied

@paddockjudge Is that the new JW Green I saw you liberate from Thornhill?

And is that any Chivas12 YO or an older bottling?

2 years ago 0

@paddockjudge
paddockjudge replied

@Nozinan, that is the old, new green label and the Chivas regal 12 yo was given to me by some cask strength afficianado ;)

2 years ago 0

RikS replied

Is there a site with “recipes” for vatting that someone knows of? As i was looking for something sweet, i was just thinking what one might do with a’bunadh which i like on its own but sometimes feel is a wee bit hot and singular?

And how long would you recommend one let it sit before trying?

2 years ago 0

@Victor
Victor replied

@RikS, I think that if I were looking to tone down A'bunadh that I would probably blend it with Macallan 12 Sherry Oak, maybe 2 parts Macallan to 1 part A'bunadh. That would make quite a beefed up Macallan Sherry Oak. I am trying some now, with A'bunadh Batch # 45. After a quick 5 minutes blended together I can say that this is very pleasant and is actually fairly mild. Probably any ratio would work pretty well. For your purposes I would try ratios between 1:2 to 2:1.

2 years ago 2Who liked this?

RikS replied

@Victor the macallan sherry oak keeps popping up, maybe that's a good one for me to explore after my mishaps with dronach 12 and not really falling for farclas 15....

Would you go so far as to say that you enjoy the vatting more than the component parts on their own and individually (appreciate the subjectivity of the question, but letd say that your vatting was a bottle sold on its own)?

2 years ago 0

@Victor
Victor replied

@RikS, no, I like both of these bottles very much on their own, and the vatting is for me not better than the individual parts. I undertook the experiment only to entertain the idea of lightening up the A'bunadh, following your request. I would still recommend Macallan 12 Sherry Oak, both by itself, and as a candidate for your project of dilution of the intensity of A'bunadh. Actually you could just drizzle a little bit of Mac 12 into your 25 ml of A'bunadh, then a little more, then a little more, until you arrive at the effect most pleasing to you.

2 years ago 2Who liked this?

RikS replied

@Victor i guess id better keep sipping my uigeadail and go check on my usual suspect webplaces how much a sherry oak will set me back here then...! As always, thanks for the time and advice

2 years ago 1Who liked this?

RikS replied

@Victor Now are we talking 10 or 12 or... macallan sherry oak?

2 years ago 0

@Victor
Victor replied

@RikS, keep in mind that you are lucky to be able to buy Macallan 12 Sherry Oak. I know a few Canadians who would love to have bottles of it but cannot get it in their locations. Wine-searcher.com has just 2 listings in all of Canada where it can be found, compared to 22 stores which have it in stock in my county in Maryland.

Macallan 12 yo Sherry Oak is the whisky to which I am referring, differentiated from Macallan 10 yo Sherry Oak, Macallan 10 yo Fine Oak, Macallan 12 yo Double Cask, and Macallan 12 yo Fine Oak. It is 12 years old, and was aged exclusively in Sherry Casks. In North America it is sold at 43% ABV. You might be stuck with the 40% ABV version in the UK. I cannot vouch for the 40% version being as tasty by itself as is the 43% current bottling.

2 years ago 0

RikS replied

@Victor interesting read... rarely seen such spread of opinion looking here, as well as masternof malt and the whisky exchange. Im curious now, seems 50/50 between those who swear by it, and those who express in rather strong terms that its too sweet and overpriced.

2 years ago 0

@Victor
Victor replied

70 GBP seems steep in price for 12 yo and 40% ABV. It is $ 71.93 here, including the tax, so about 1/3 less.

I am sure the reviews are for the 40% version which is sold at MOM and TWE. I don't have an opinion on that version, since I haven't tasted any of it. Best bet is to find a mate who has a bottle and get a taste.

2 years ago 0

RikS replied

Tried a 3/5 Glengoyne 12 and 2/5 A'bunadh with the objective of making the former a bit more interesting, and the latter a bit less hot. Let it sit for about 3 hours. And, whilst a rather amateurish approach... it didn't turn out half bad at all I think! The flowery and light sugary sweetness of the GG appears lifted by the rounder and deeper notes in the AA, the higher ABV of th AA gave it a lot more spine driving the taste and seems to have converted the slightly 'bitter' finish I found in the GG into a dry longer finish, whilst I suppose the GG added an element of 'summery fresh and light' to the AA. It's all in there, and medium finish - quite tanniny resembling making me think of a Barolo. This is a bit fun, I think I'll actually want another sip now :)

2 years ago 2Who liked this?

@Robert99
Robert99 replied

@RikS Join the club! Yes, it is fun to do our own vatting. I, for myself, do a lot of crazy things as I like to do blend as well, mixing Bourbon, Canadian whisky and Scotch or Irish whisky. My last blend was a mix of Jameson Caskmate, Woodford bourbon and Glenfarclas 105 and it is quite good. yum

2 years ago 3Who liked this?

RikS replied

@Robert99 Thank you Robert! I haven't done much, and certainly claim no proficiency in my creations. But... I believe it is a great way to challenge myself to be able to distinguish and truly contemplate the various elements in the bottles I have so that I add with some thought behind it, and also the amusement of trying to imagine / feel the result before tasting to see if it remotely corresponds to intent. And, of course, it has increased my respect for blends - having always presumed that 'single malts' were something very fine and precious, whereas blends were the cheap mix-up (a bit like proper tea, and the junk that's left for the teabags).

2 years ago 2Who liked this?

@RianC
RianC replied

@RikS - I've always tinkered with whisky but usually mixing malts with malts. Recently tried making a blend (connosr.com/old-style-teachers-recipe-any-…) and feel it came out pretty decent. I still have some grain whisky left which I'll use for a similar experiment as it's almost like slightly flavoured vodka on it's own (bit of a let down actually) but worked well when blended.

I found the blending part a real eye opener and would encourage anyone to give it a go - particularly, as you point out, to help develop one's experience and knowledge. Certainly surprised me how much the blend changed by putting in a tiny bit of older whisky.

2 years ago 1Who liked this?

@RianC
RianC replied

@Victor - Macallans are way too pricey over here, hence why I've never bought one!

2 years ago 1Who liked this?

RikS replied

Aberlour A'bunadh + Aberlour 12

So, conducting my little experiment: A'bunadh is a bit hot for me at 60.1% and I'm not sure about how I feel about it when watering it down to 43-46%. Not successful so far...

I also have the Aberlour 12 yrs old and I like the nose and the palate, but at 40% it's a bit like drinking plum juice... So I'm experimenting with vatting the two together at a ratio that gives me 45.2%. Tried it last night and liked it - retains the round sherry notes, not 'thin' at all but pleasant viscosity, and no burn but still enough ABV to drive the taste better, and creates for a longer finish.

To give it some proper time to settle, I've mixed up 20cl which I now intend to let sit for a week or so.

Once ready, I'll try my 'vatted' 45.2% and compare it with a dram of A'bunadh watered down to 45% to see what - if any - will be the distinguishing elements.

2 years ago 4Who liked this?

@RianC
RianC replied

@RikS - Good call! I found a few drops of A'bunadh into the 10 made a very pleasing dram. I also found that the former needed water but became a little one dimensional once it became palatable and went flat very quickly. I think I had a less than stellar batch but I wasn't that impressed to be honest.

2 years ago 0

@OdysseusUnbound

I don’t want to start a new thread, so this one seems appropriate for my question. Do any of my fellow Connosrs use a decanter for their vattings/Solera bottles/Infinity bottles? If so, which type of decanter would you recommend? I’ve been looking into it, and there’s everything out there from $20 to $1000. What are the properties of a good decanter?

2 years ago 0

@Nozinan
Nozinan replied

@OdysseusUnbound I have little to contribute in terms of price or utility, but I would just suggest that, especially if you plan to keep the spirit in the decanter more than a few hours, you choose a decanter that is lead free.

2 years ago 1Who liked this?

@OdysseusUnbound

@Nozinan Solid advice, doc. I’ve always wondered why some glass-makers use lead...but I haven’t wondered enough to google it.

2 years ago 0

@Nozinan
Nozinan replied

@OdysseusUnbound

katom.com/blog/…

Soda-lime glass is full of amorphous molecules, meaning they don’t settle in any specific order. In lead crystal, the lime is replaced with lead, which encourages a very specific three-dimensional molecular layout. The difference in the molecular structure is what causes lead glass to boast such a high refractive index, creating the distinctive sparkle associated with crystal. Lead crystal is also a softer glass, meaning it is easier for craftsmen to work into beautiful cut designs.

2 years ago 0

@paddockjudge
paddockjudge replied

@OdysseusUnbound, a decanter occupies space. I use an empty bottle, sans label, one that easily fits a space in my cabinet....and the price is right, saving $ to use for more tumbler_glass

2 years ago 3Who liked this?

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@paddockjudgeD@NamBeist@Nolinske@Cardinal + 4 others

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