With a recent review of the HP Valknut (which until recently I thought was a made up parody name), I was inspired to dig into my samples for another NAS Viking themed HP to review.
I was lucky enough to receive this from @Fiddich1980 last July, the 18th to be specific. It was our first sample swap and he just reminded me that we did a “my worst for your worst” exchange as part of it. My worst? Lambertus, of course. I won that one…
I don’t know much about HP’s Warrior Series, but this is part of it.
This expression, in a standard Glencairn, is reviewed in my usual manner, allowing it to settle after which I take my nosing and tasting notes, followed by the addition of a few drops of water, waiting, then nosing and tasting.
Very sweet. Sherry nose. Vegetal peat with an umami note. Is there sulphur? Sometimes I have trouble differentiating between vegetal peat and sulphur. It’s not unpleasant but I could do without it. Not very complex. Water brings out the vegetal aspect, maybe a hint of boiled cabbage. (19/25)
Fairly dry, slightly sour in the development. Some sherry, some peat, not very interesting or complex. Thin and weak. Water makes it a bit hotter. It may be the power of suggestion (@Fiddich1980) but there’s a hot raw ginger note. (18.5/25)
Pretty short, sweet. More bitter with water. (20/25)
Nose and palate are simple but complimentary.
Score: Neat - 80/100 With Water: 77.5/100
I hate to give bad reviews to whiskies that were given to me as samples by friends (I don’t want to appear ungrateful), but something tells me my benefactor wasn’t expecting me to give this a 90. Also, I am an admitted whisky snob. I am trying to learn to appreciate non-premium whiskies, and in doing so I’ve found things to enjoy outside my normal comfort zone. But this isn’t one of them.
Thanks @Fiddich1980 for letting me try this one.
@Nozinan I, too had a sample from a friend who was similarly unenthusiastic. My reaction was very much like yours. I think you were generous at 80 points. This kind of stuff is getting to be a very generic HP house style. Not sure who they are trying to appeal to these days with this relentless outpouring of bland, uninteresting weaklings with silly names. I'm sure the raping and pillaging Vikings they are referencing would demand something a lot stronger after a hard day on the job.