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Monkey Shoulder Blended Malt Whisky

Blending By The Nose Alone

0 1077

@VictorReview by @Victor

11th Oct 2014

0

  • Nose
    23
  • Taste
    19
  • Finish
    17
  • Balance
    18
  • Overall
    77

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Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

Monkey Shoulder is pure malt blended from Balvenie, Glenfiddich, and Kininvie malt whiskies. "Batch 27" on the label = blended malt from a total of 27 casks. The reviewed sample is compliments of @jeffc

Nose: strong intensity, lots of raisiny dry wine flavours, lots of vanilla, some caramel, baked pear, weakly-flavoured apple cobbler; great balance of sweet and dry. I like the Monkey Shoulder nose quite a lot

Taste: I wish this tasted like it smells. Both grain (yes, barley is a grain) and wood are eclipsed by the wine flavours. The palate is drier, much more wine-tannic and astringent than is the nose. The wine flavours are not quite as attractive in the mouth as they are in the nose. This starts dry and tannic, develops sweetness mid-palate, then turns sour moving toward the finish

Finish: tannic bitter and sour marc. Way too sour for me. I am not a fan

Balance: some people really like Monkey Shoulder. The nose is quite good. Otherwise, I'd be happy not to drink much of this. This could be another case of 'blending by the nose without tasting the whisky'

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10 comments

@Frost
Frost commented

@Victor - a good review. I feel the same as you, the nose is what makes this dram and I find the finish to be way too short. I do find it doesn't stand up well if you drink it after a peated and/or high ABV expression.

5 years ago 0

Alby commented

Hey Victor, I'm a newbie here from Australia. The ABV is 40% here. What my question is... and I haven't tried the Monkey Shoulder yet... The only blend I will buy and enjoy is the JW black. At present the black is nearly $3 cheaper than the M.S. Which would you choose?

5 years ago 0

@Victor
Victor commented

@Alby, welcome to Connosr. Between Johnnie Walker Black Label and Monkey Shoulder, I would buy and drink Johnnie Walker Black Label every time.

It sounds that you like your blends more strongly flavoured and peaty/smokey. Give Johnnie Walker Double Black a try if you get the chance. You might also like Islay Mist 8 yo. Others going that direction are Clan MacGregor and The Black Grouse.

A blended Scotch with a TOTALLY different flavour profile, but which I and many others love is The Bailie Nicol Jarvie. It is a citrus bomb at 40% abv. IT is very lively and refreshing. That is one you have in Australia which is not sold here in the US.

5 years ago 0

@FMichael
FMichael commented

Was talking to a co-worker of mine about some blends; reminded myself of my bottle of Monkey Shoulder in my sock drawer (a topic from another thread)...

Anywho - just had to crack it open...Lovely stuff, and I must add another single malt to the list in which the Monkey Shoulder blend is superior to (mind you - just my humble opinion)...And that's the Arran 10 yr.

5 years ago 0

@Hat
Hat commented

I pick malts to drink while smoking a cigar that aren't expensive...being muted by the strong flavors of the cigar, (I tend to smoke fuller bodied cigars) can still take me to a happy place. Monkey Shoulder is a good choice for this at @$30 a bottle. When not smoking, I go for something a bit more complex.

5 years ago 0

@Nozinan
Nozinan commented

If you dropped the smoking completely, you'd taste more and live longer for more whisky opportunities.

5 years ago 0

@FMichael
FMichael commented

@ Hat - I myself enjoy a nice cigar a few times a week (weather permitting - smoke outside)...I usually enjoy my maduro with a cold beer, or a nice cup of coffee...Personally I've found smoking, and whisky both competing for my palate's attention.

5 years ago 0

@Phil73805
Phil73805 commented

I tried the Monkey Shoulder after reading tasting notes like the one above. When I tried it I got...nothing. Nothing at all. Alcohol and nothing. Very strange.

5 years ago 0

@Victor
Victor commented

Phil, that IS strange! Have you been doing something to burn out your taste buds?...and, is it just the Monkey Shoulder that gives you the "nothing" whisky taste? If so, maybe you were drinking a very old washed out sample. A new bottle of Monkey Shoulder should give you a lot of flavour.

5 years ago 0

@Frost
Frost commented

@Phil73805 what are you doing before you dram?

I find Monkey Shoulder to be pleasant. I referred to my tasting notes and have got some interesting tastes.

5 years ago 0

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