Whisky Connosr
Menu
Shop

Milk And Honey Classic Single Malt Whisky

A Gift from the Holy Land

5 388

@NozinanReview by @Nozinan

8th Apr 2020

1

Milk And Honey Classic Single Malt Whisky
  • Nose
    ~
  • Taste
    ~
  • Finish
    ~
  • Balance
    ~
  • Overall
    88

Show rating data charts

Distribution of ratings for this: user

  • Brand: Milk And Honey
  • ABV: 46%
  • Batch: 00400085 06/01/20

Before I lock up my entire collection for Passover, I like to do one last review, and I like to review a whisky that is, in my opinion, worth tasting. So with the last wisps of gefilte fish cooking smells upstairs, I’ve retreated to the basement to review something relatively rare in North America.

Located in Tel Aviv, Milk and Honey is Israel’s first whisky distillery. I first read about it more than 5 years ago and I had hoped to see it when I visited my family in 2015. Alas, there was no time, and no visitor centre. In December 2019, we visited to celebrate my great aunt’s 95th birthday. My cousin’s wife took me and a friend and we got a distillery tour (and, by name dropping Connosr, a special post-tour tasting). The details are here:

connosr.com/milk-and-honey-israel-the-next…

This distillery uses only “Kosher” casks when they do wine maturation, although I’ve been told by religious people who are in the know that all whisky is Kosher regardless of cask origin. They have experimented with refill Islay casks, and scraped, toasted and recharred (STR) casks, and they mature some casks in different locations (Israel has many different climates for such a small country), including the lowest place on land in the world, by the Dead Sea.

I believe that this is the single malt expression that we tasted during the tour. It had not been released for sale (planned release 2020), so I filled a distillery cask bottle (which I am not opening until I can do so with friends).

This bottle was sourced in January or February by the mother of a friend of mine and she gave it to me as a Purim gift last month. It does not have an age statement but I was told at the distillery that it is three years old (as they use the SWA age definition for whisky). This was matured in ex-bourbon casks and red wine STR casks. It states that it is NCF and natural colour. I opened the bottle just under a month ago, it has been gassed with each of 2 uses, and it remains over 2/3 full.

This expression 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.


Nose: 22/25

Fruity and sweet. Syrup. I could be fooled into thinking there were some sherry casks involved, there are those rich, dried fruit notes. Some faint baking spices. I get a floral perfume-y note (in a good way). This is not the most complex or layered nose, but it is essentially flawless and very pleasant. With water the nose seems to fade. The lighter, “higher pitched” notes seem to be more noticeable. (21.5/25)

Taste: 21.5/25

First sip is slightly spirity. There is a sweet fruitiness on the arrival. Red wine predominates, and there is pepper in the development. Nice thick mouthfeel. Water seems to amplify the flavours, that includes the spiritiness (only a little), and the pepper gets pushed back to the late development and finish. The mouthfeel is thinner but the whole experience is more refreshing. (22/25)

Finish: 22/25

Peppery, medium long finish. Slightly sour. Pleasant.

Balance: 21.5/25

The nose is a little more floral than the palate. The palate is a little spirity.

Score: Neat - 87/100 With Water: 87/100

With water and the Ashok manoeuvre:

Nose: 22.5 Taste: 21.5 Finish: 22 Balance: 22 Total: 88/100


I’m not sure I would call the first 3 year old malt from a distillery a classic. But given that English is not my first language I may not understand that term properly, so I’ll let it go. If the quality stays up there in 10 years, this one may very well become a classic.

This is a very pleasant whisky. Bottled at 46%, I find I get the best experience with a slightly larger sip than I usually take. I think this could be even better at cask strength, based on the expressions I got to taste at the distillery.

This is mature beyond its years, as expected given the hot climate. I hope that they will consider longer maturations for their standard bottlings in the future. I would love to taste this as a 5 year old or 8 year old.

Happy Passover Everyone!

3 comments

@casualtorture
casualtorture commented

I hope this makes it to Tennessee. Sounds lovely.

4 years ago 1Who liked this?

@BlueNote
BlueNote commented

Happy Passover, Easter, Ramadan to all. It will be a little different this year, but it will still be a family affair in some form.

4 years ago 0

@cricklewood
cricklewood commented

@Nozinan I was anticipating your review of this, it sounds delicious and that this distillery has the potential for interesting releases. We're seeing STR casks being used a lot by these startup distilleries, I remember trying the Kavalan Podium which is their 46% ABV house vatting of ex-bourbon, STR and virgin oak casks and found the really fruity flavours intriguing.

I'll be curious to see if the SAQ ever gets any M&H whisky.

4 years ago 0