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Usquaebach Reserve

Gentle Peat, Tart Citrus

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@VictorReview by @Victor

28th Dec 2015


  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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Distribution of ratings for this: user

  • Brand: Usquaebach
  • ABV: 43%

Usquaebach Reserve is a No Age Statement blended Scotch Whisky. The reviewed bottle has been open for two days

Nose: medium sweet gentle peat, pleasant big citrus with a good sweet and sour/tart balance. The wheat grain whisky is very noticeable and is very soft, pleasant, and in good balance. Water added merges and harmonises the flavours. This is a very nice nose, with and without water. Score: 22/25 points

Taste: sweet peat of intermediate intensity, tart citrus, and licorice in the mouth. Other than the addition of licorice, the palate is a very good reflection of the nose. Water added brings out more licorice, and mellows and harmonises the flavours. Score: 21.5/25 points

Finish: goes more citric and sour into the long finish. The licorice stays strong. Water added greatly mellows the finish. Score: 20/25 points

Balance: very good balance in the nose, good balance on the palate, fair balance on the finish. Score: 20/25 points

Total Sequential Score: 83.5/100 points

Strength: strong flavours throughout. Score: 23/25 points

Quality: much above average quality of the wheat grain, nice gentle peat, OK malt, OK citrus. Score: 21.5/25 points

Variety: good variety on the nose and palate, fair variety on the finish. Score: 20/25 points

Harmony: good to very good harmony on the nose and palate, fair harmony on the finish. Score: 21/25 points

Total Non-Sequential Score: 85.5 points

Comments: this whisky is a great case in point to discuss the differences between blended Scotch and malts. This whisky has strong, very good flavours,...BUT, even though the wheat grain flavours in this whisky are much above average in quality, I just wish that they were not there and that this would be 100% barley-malt

Give this whisky a better, more balanced finish, and I would score this at 87 or 88 points

If you like tart citrus as the focus, with some nice peat, you'll like Usquaebach Reserve

Usually I don't add water to 43% ABV whisky, but I like all stages of the sequential tasting experience of Usquaebach Reserve with water added


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