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Glen Els Ember

woodsmoke heaven

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@WillsReview by @Wills

6th Jul 2013


  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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  • Brand: Glen Els
  • ABV: 45.9%

This Glen Els Ember is from the Woodsmoked series of the German distillery and comes with 45.9% ABV. Woodsmoked? Yes, this isn't very common or at leaast I never heard of this before. The whisky is actually “finished” through smoking 24 hours in woodsmoke of beech and alder wood. Don't ask me how this is done in detail but I hopefully will learn in the future. I plan to visit the distillery (hopefully this year). The Ember is non-chill-filtered and non-colored.

I purchased a sample which wasn't clean at the outside when it arrives me. Gladly only a small amount of the whisky got lost but through this fact I had instantly an intense smell when I opened my packet. And this aroma was really special. Lots of smoked ham and salmon. I instantly had to pour me a dram and indeed this is a different kind of smoke, also with a salty touch. There is nice sweetness with ripe bananas, strawberry, cherry cake and caramel. I am getting roasted malt and again this unique mellow smoke which is a mix of BBQ and campfire. I wasn't expecting so much from “woodsmoke”, this sometimes even reminds me of the Uigeadail (or that type of smoked sherry).

The attack is peppery. The palate keeps on going sweet and smoky with intense wood (quite a special oak flavor). There are nuts and the taste of typical BBQ sauce (bittersweet, roasty). Grilled sausages. The body is medium long and quite soft.

The dry finish starts with a salty tingling and continues nutty (walnut, almods) and smoky. It is a bit bitter at the end, like pine cones.

Overall this dram is surprisingly smoky and complex. In my opinion it is really good with those very distinct BBQ tones. Maybe it is a bit too woody/bitter for some palates. I really hope to visit that distillery soon ;)


Wills commented

I forgot to mention some infos:

The malt consists of 60% regular and 40% woodsmoked barley. The cask types are Cream & Oloroso-Sherry, Tawny Port, Marsala, Malaga and Claret GrandCru. The casks matured for at least 4 years.

9 years ago 0

Rigmorole commented

thanks for a review of this relatively unknown whisky!

9 years ago 0

Wills commented

You'r welcome! I know that it's unlikely for most here to get their hands on this. But maybe if you are going for a trip to Germany this would be a nice suggestion. And I am a happy because there finally is good German whisky out there - well OK, I wasn't trying lots of them yet, but the reputation isn't really that great tbh ;)

9 years ago 0

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