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After my last 3 reviews I had intended to delve a little deeper into the wonders of Islay. Tonight I did have the good fortune of adding a Bowmore 12 year old malt to the cabinet. I'm enjoying the Bowmore now while I write about the Sullivans Cove Double Cask.
So....last weekend I went in search of another Islay malt and the local bottle shop had a tasting on Tasmanian whisky. Oh well, why not give it a crack. Nothing ventured and all that. I had given my peat loving taste buds a weeks grace so it was with an open mind and a relatively clean palate that I unscrewed my first "Oz" malt.
Yes. Unscrewed. No cork to twist out and watch the first fumes wafting upwards and certainly easier to open. The vineyards and blenders do it so why not the malt distilleries. It's a fine looking stumpy bottle, good label and ok blurb.
The nose is brilliant. Lots of port, vanilla, dark pipe tobacco ( the stuff in a tin that needs to be mushed in your hands pre-pipe), and a hint of wet varnish. As a first impression its a winner and it reminded me of Glenmorangie Quinta Ruban.
The colour is a warm golden syrup with a touch of cloud thanks to it not being chill filtered.
The taste was a little disappointing after the big nose. I thought of Patricia Cornwell digging up details on Jack the Ripper and I kept searching for more but didn't find much more. Maybe its the youth of the stuff which seems to give it an almost unpleasant vitality.
I left it for while and came back after it and I had time to reconsider each other. My second impression was better with almonds and maraschino cherries. Maybe I'm a peat head now and find anything that doesn't reek of bush fires too light.
It's not a bad dram and I'm pleased to have it on the shelf. I'm curious about the other Tasmanian whisky's and will keep an eye out for more tastings. My score relates more to my taste and I suspect a year ago it would have rated higher.