By @markjedi1 on 5th Mar 2012, show post
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Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 404: Deanston 13 Year Old 2007 Signatory for Belgium & Luxembourg
I’m somewhat surprised that this is only my 19th Deanston so far. It’s a bottling from Signatory for the Belgian and Luxemburg market. No less than 851 bottles were drawn from this first fill sherry butt, albeit at 46% ABV. Lovely color indeed. I scored my bottle in my favorite whisky restaurant De Cluysenaer.
9 months ago 1Who liked this?
Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 405: Dalmunach 6 Year Old 2015 The Octave for Saint Mac
Dalmunach is a new distillery, operational since 2014. It was built on the site of the old Imperial distillery. Our friends at Saint Mac, a Belgian whisky shop, selected this octave – a small cask of sherrywood – from Duncan Taylor. It contains a 6 year old Dalmunach at cask strength. Only 65 bottles were available and they sold out in a flash.
9 months ago 0
Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 406: Big Peat Peatrichor
Petrichor is the smell that arises when rain falls on dry ground. Google it, if you don't believe me. Douglas Laing was happy to turn that into PEATrichor. It was specially bottled in honor of the Islay Music & Malt Festival – Feis Ile – 2021, which took places virtually for the second time in a row. On the label we see Big Peat with a yellow rain vest among the peat bogs on Islay.
8 months ago 2Who liked this?
Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 407: Gouden Carolus Rabelo
Every year, an Anniversary Edition of the Belgian De Molenberg whisky is released. This is the one from 2020, called Rabelo after the boats that were used in the Douro Valley to transport port barrels. It literally means 'little tail', a reference to the small rudder on the boat. After 36 months of maturation on a classic bourbon cask, this malt was given a finish of 28 months on a barrel that – you guessed it – previously contained port. White port, mind you. And the whisky is therefore just over 5 years old. Let’s do this!
7 months ago 0
Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 408: Gouden Carolus Sherry Oak
The Sherry Oak from distillery De Molenberg is a standard expression, which means always available. It concerns the Gouden Carolus single malt that – as always – is distilled from their Tripel, but after the regular maturation in bourbon barrels got a finish on oloroso sherry casks. It gives it a nice, warm glow.
Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 409: Lambertus 5 Year Old Single Malt
Lambertus... I'm immediately wary. In 2011 and 2015 I tasted their single grain and then called it – somewhat irreverently, admittedly – Aqua Vitae Horribilis. But it was also really not drinkable in my opinion. When Sean from WhiskyPoint in Kessel offered me this bottle to taste, I was not immediately very enthusiastic. But look, we are more than a lustrum further and this is their single malt. Who knows... let’s give it a try!
7 months ago 3Who liked this?
@markjedi1 A non-vile Lambertus? What a novel idea! How would you score this one?
@Nozinan from his verbal description I'm guessing he gives the Lambertus 5 yo SM a score of 77.
How about it Mark?
7 months ago 1Who liked this?
@Nozinan @Victor I actually scored this one a 75.
@markjedi1 Given the negative score that the 10 YO grain whisky deserved, this is a huge improvement and almost (Note A-L-M-O-S-T) tempts me to want to try it.
@Nozinan if by "try" you mean 'taste', then yes most certainly I'd like to try the Lambertus 5 yo Single Malt. Knowledge must be served by first hand experience. If by "try" you mean to invest money in buying a bottle of that product, then no, I don't feel any desire to do that.
I work from the principle, "Try (almost) everything. Buy only that of which you fully expect you are going to want to drink 750 mls worth." I doubt I would want to explore this one beyond 100 ml, so I wouldn't be buying 700 or 750 ml worth.
@Victor I think you and I are on exactly the same page. If only there were a way to obtain a 50 cc measure of this elixir. For a whisky like this one, having them invest in inexpensive miniatures would be a good way to try to lure back those who were put off by the grain spirit...
Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 410: Wild Weasel 2014 Sherry Cask Finish
Wild Weasel is a Belgian single malt and I taste three single casks from 2014 in a row: Sherry Cask Finish, White Port Cask Finish and Red Port Cask Finish. Let's start with barrel 32 – sherry – that yielded 705 bottles of 50cl.
Sounds like a very decent whisky Mark and a much better representative of Belgian whisky than the dreaded Lambertus. But I can see things going horribly wrong after having had a couple of drams and trying to pour one from that very "interesting" bottle.
7 months ago 2Who liked this?
Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 411: Wild Weasel 2014 White Port Cask Finish
Wild Weasel is a Belgian single malt and I taste three single casks from 2014 in a row: Sherry Cask Finish, White Port Cask Finish and Red Port Cask Finish. In the glass is barrel 35 – white port – that yielded 590 bottles of 50cl.
Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 412: Wild Weasel 2014 Red Port Cask Finish
Wild Weasel is a Belgian single malt and I taste three single casks from 2014 in a row: Sherry Cask Finish, White Port Cask Finish and Red Port Cask Finish. The last of this trio is barrel 36 – red port – which yielded 576 bottles of 50cl.
Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 413: Bunnahabhain 12 Year Old 2009 for MMM
The fourth and final single cask that we selected for the Canvas Series takes us back to Islay. We also put Monique back to work who delivered a beautiful closing piece with this paining for our label. This Bunnahabhain matured for no less than 12 years on a sherry butt before we bottled it at cask strength. Pour it and then give it five minutes to catch its breath. You will not be sorry.
6 months ago 0
Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 414: Crown 3 Year Old 2018 Belgian Single Grain Cask #136
In September 2021 I was introduced to the Belgian bottler Crown Spirits from Bruges for the first time. I then tasted 4 of their previous releases and look: number 5 has just been launched. It is a Belgian single grain – distilled at Braeckman Distillers on 4 January 2018 – and matured on a first fill oloroso hogshead. Bottled on 26 October 2021. 'Aged 45 months' is mentioned on the label, making it an almost-4-year old.
Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 415: Linkwood 33 Year Old 1988 The Whisky Jury
'In remembrance of Mr Peter Cowell' is written in small print on the label. The Scotsman Cowell recently died and had this cask of Linkwood in his possession. The children sold the cask and that's how it ended up with Joeri from The Whisky Jury. They couldn't have found of a better bottler, I think. Joeri even gave them a few bottles to pay tribute to their father. It is a refill hogshead that has been sleeping for no less than 33 years since March 1988. I didn't even have my driver's license yet. After just over three decades, the cask still yielded 176 bottles. You can find pictures of the actual barrel on the Facebook account of The Whisky Jury.
Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 416: Auchentoshan 22 Year Old 1998 Klubb23
Our friends from Klubb23 got their hands on a cask of Auchentoshan, bottled especially for the Dram Brothers Whisky Society of Luxembourg. I had to hurry to get my hands on one as there are only 70 bottles available. It’s a belter!
6 months ago 1Who liked this?
Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 417: Auchentoshan 17 Year Old Bordeaux Wine Finish
A finish on wine casks is always a bit tricky, but Auchentoshan usually gets it right. And while I’ve tasted many of these, this 17 years old bottled in 2002 was one of the first that was finished on these Saint Julien Bordeaux wine casks and one I had not yet tried before!
Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 418: Auchentoshan 14 Year Old 2002 Provenance
Provenance is a series by Douglas Laing and I already tasted 3 Auchentoshan bottled under this label, an 11-year-old from 2000, a 12-year-old from 2001 and a 13-year-old from 2002. Douglas Laing released a 14-year-old in 2016 and that now sits in my glass.
Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 419: Auchentoshan 17 Year Old 2000 The Ultimate 850th Cask
The Ultimate barely needs introduction, I think. The Dutch independent bottler van Wees releases single casks under this banner, often at cask strength. Meanwhile, there are more than 1000 and in the run-up to that they released some special bottles and this one belongs in that list. This was the 850th single cask in The Ultimate, a 17-year-old Auchentoshan at 60.2% ABV. That's why it was released in a nice box.
Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 420: Auchentoshan 18 Year Old 2003 SMWS 5.78
At the whisky festival in Ghent, my good friend Chris Lauriers stood behind the table of the Scotch Malt Whisky Society. He beckoned me closer and said, ‘I have something for you’. I saw the number 5.78 on the label and knew immediately that I had to taste it. After all, number 5 means Auchentoshan. It's already the 78th single cask bottled by the SMWS of my favorite Lowlander. In this case an 18 years old from 2003 matured on a 1st fill ex-bourbon barrel bottled at no less than 54.9%. Wow!
Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 421: Auchentoshan 13 Year Old 2007 North Star Spirits
Well, well, well... brand new Independent Bottler of the Year North Star Spirits (yes, for the second year in a row, congratulations, Iain!) bottled an Auchentoshan for the first time last summer. How about at that? And it has become a young lad of barely 13 years old, that was allowed to keep his beauty sleep on an oloroso hogshead. In July 2021, this resulted in 330 bottles at 55% ABV. Fan of both Auchentoshan and North Star Spirits, I of course could not pass up on this one.
6 months ago 2Who liked this?
Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 422: Blended Scotch 11 Year Old Watt Whisky for The Cluysenaer
Mark & Kate Watt started their own company a few years back named The Campbeltown Whisky Company, but their releases are better known under the banner Watt Whisky. And one of my favorite whisky restaurants in Belgium – De Cluysenaer (which translates into The Hermit) – selected a blended scotch 11 years old to celebrate their 21st anniversary. Guess what? It’s a gem.
5 months ago 0
Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 423: Eddu 8 Year Old 2013 Selected for Belgium
This French single grain – from buckwheat, mind you – matured for no less than 8 years. Distilled in January 2013, it first spent several years in a former cognac cask, then crossed over to a port cask and then went back to the original cognac cask! Seems unique to me. Bottled on 1st September 2021, the cask yielded 476 bottles. I had the privilege of tasting it at the whisky festival in Ghent and was immediately sold. By the way, did you know that buckwheat is not actually a real grain, but actually a plant that is grown for its seeds from which flour is then made? It's actually a 'pseudo grain', really!
Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 424: Johnnie Walker Ghost & Rare Pittyvaich
I've had to wait a long time for it, but I don't complain. After all, I received the bottle as a gift from Dearly Beloved for my birthday. Then patience is appropriate. This fourth Ghost & Rare edition (after the Brora, Port Ellen and Glenury Royal) has Pittyvaich as the fingerprint malt and that's a good thing, because in 2021 there was no Pittyvaich in the Diageo Special Releases. Moreover, I was afraid that after the first three – which were followed by the Blue Label Legendary Eight (which is excellent) – no new Ghost & Rare would appear. So double relief. Anyway: this blend is composed with whisky from the following distilleries: Cragganmore, Royal Lochnagar, Strathmill, Mannochmore, Auchroisk, Carsebridge, Port Dundas and – of course – Pittyvaich. Like its predecessors, it is bottled at 43.8%.
Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 425: IN2Spirit, a new Belgian bottler
A new Belgian bottler has risen: IN2Spirit. Behind the initiative are Steven Demarez & Tijs Denuwelare, two people from West Flanders. And it has to be said: it is daring to start a new company in these circumstances. And it can also be said: the packaging is spot on. Beautiful. And now let's hope that the contents of the first two bottles are good as well. We’re trying their Dalmunach 2015 on a PX Quarter cask and their Blair Athol 2009 on a refill hogshead.
Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 426: Caol Ila 10 Year Old 2010 Old Particular for Our Belgian Friends
This Caol Ila was bottled by Douglas Laing in their well-known Old Particular series, but stands out for two reasons. Firstly, you can see the Belgian tricolor on the label, because it is exclusively bottled 'for our Belgian friends' and secondly it is a single cask that was bottled at cask strength. The refill hogshead thus yielded 296 bottles. It is very pale, by the way.
4 months ago 1Who liked this?
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