Tag Archives: Tasting notes

The Man – The World Beyond Scotch

The Man – The World Beyond Scotch
New world whiskies are racing up the popularity stakes. Nikhil Agarwal shortlists some of the finest around.
The world of whisky has evolved. For one there is more demand. The Scots never imagined that Asia would develop such a thirst for their age statements that they would actually be a shortage. Hence the release of non age statements from the giants. They probably didn’t also  imagine that there would be the beginning of a small threat to their whisky fiefdom coming from all corners of the world. Whisky drinkers who have done it all are besoted by the exotic and  new. For the first time ever in whisky history there is access to quality stuff from around the world giving enthusiasts an opportunity to set forth on a voyage of discovery like never before. Much like wine actually.

Japanese whisky for one has become a thing of legends with prices to match, demand clearly out pacing supply. Some of it is undeserved though I might add. Tasmania in Australia is steadily finding its space in the whisky world, Taiwan has created a malt whisky that achieved cult status and even in India we have two distilleries that are taking on the world. The USA is now producing malt whiskies over above their delicious ryes and bourbons. Here are a couple that have caught my attention lately –

DALWHINNIE 15 YO – HIGHLAND, SCOTLAND

Gold with a crisp, dry and very aromatic with hints of heather and peat on the nose. Light to medium bodied with a smooth and lasting flavours of honey sweetness & vanilla followed by deeper citrus flavours

BUNNAHABHAIN 18YO – ISLAY SCOTLAND

A rich mahogany Single Malt Scotch Whisky, this is one of the Bunnahabhain family favourites. It is intensely warming; with dried fruit, sherry, toffee and spices leading to a delicious honeyed nuttiness and the slightest hint of sea salt.

PAUL JOHN BRILLIANCE – GOA INDIA

The six-row barley for this whisky comes from the foothills of the Himalayas. Brilliance is matured in bourbon casks, to give you absolute sensory delight. The demerara sugars give off a whiff of sweet fragrances, with a hint of cinnamon, dash of honey and faint spices. The honey-like smoothness is offset by the crunchy-bar-like crispness. Somewhere, there is also a tinge of cocoa.

YAMAZAKI 18 YEARS OLD – OSAKA JAPAN

Rich with mature autumn fruit, with a deep amber colour. The nose has raisin, apricot, cafe au lait, Mizunara (Japanese oak) with blackberry, strawberry jam, dark chocolate on the palate with a long, spicy, smooth finish.

KURAYOSHI 18 YEAR PURE MALT WHISKY – CHUGOKU JAPAN

A deeply complex spirit derived from extensive aging. The sweet taste of honey, mixed with smoke, spice and mint, lingers on the palate, carried and lifted by this 18yr whisky’s higher abv.

KAVALAN EX SHERRY – YILAN, TAIWAN

An award winning Sherry Solist reduced to 46% alcohol volume with Kavalan spring water, this is a perfect introduction to the outstanding new world whisky.  This rich and complex whisky opens onto notes of dried fruit and walnut with some marzipan and vanilla touches to it. The palate is smooth, with rancio red fruits (raspberry, red currant) and spices.

HELLYER’S ROAD PINOT NOIR – TASMANIA AUSTRALIA

The nose is immediately drawn to crisp summer citrus, lemon and orange that obediently withdraws on the palate to manifest a sweet, gentle layer of pepper and spice – a persuasion of the red wine cameo. Burnt blackberry sauce lingers in the aftertaste foreclosing a treasured confusion of the senses.

COMPASS BOX HEDONISM – SCOTLAND

A celebration of that ideal marriage between distilled spirit and high quality oak maturation. The aromas and flavours hint of vanilla, caramel, a delicate fruitiness, accented by flashes of coconut in the finish. This is a whisky that will appeal to both the ardent whisky enthusiast and newcomers to whisky alike.

MCCARTHY’S SINGLE MALT – OREGON, USA

McCarthy’s Oregon Single Malt Whiskey is distilled in a Holstein pot still using one pass distillation and is non-chill filtered. It is then barrel-aged in air-dried Oregon Oak barrels. The result is remarkably smooth for a 3-year-old whiskey. In the Whiskey Bible’s review of the world’s whiskeys, McCarthy’s was recognized as the “Best Small Batch Whiskey” in 2004 and 2006.

DAD’S HAT RYE WHISKEY – PENNSYLVANIA, USA

Floral and spicy on the nose with a well-balanced mouth feel and flavor — up-front and back-end spice, cinnamon on the mid-palate. Underlying notes of dried fruit and black cherry with hints of tobacco, vanilla and oak.

The Man - Authored Article - Scotch - April issue 2018 - 01
The Man - Authored Article - Scotch - April issue 2018 - 02

Allan Scott Generations Pinot Noir 2016, Marlborough, New Zealand

Allan Scott Generations Pinot Noir 2016, Marlborough, New Zealand: Cherries, black plums and a maple savoury character on the nose. The ripe and sumptuous concentrated fruit is supported by subtle notes of oak. The wine finishes very smoothly with refined ripe, light tannins providing structure and a smooth silky long flavourful finish.

Concha Y Toro Devils Collection 2016 Rapel Valley, Chile

Concha Y Toro Devils Collection 2016 Rapel Valley, Chile: Immensely complex Shiraz, Cabernet & Carmenere blend from some of Chile’s greatest vineyards. Joyous & powerful. A ripe wine with pronounced notes of black cherries, blackcurrants, plums and a subtle touch of vanilla from the oak barrels. Delicate notes of black plums complemented by silky tannins. An enveloping wine with a well-balanced palate.

OLD PULTENEY 12 YO HIGHLANDS, SCOTLAND

OLD PULTENEY 12 YO, HIGHLANDS, SCOTLAND

Old Pulteney 12 YO

Deep amber, red golden with a slight pink hue sparkling with a copper glow the aroma has medium to high intensity with a briny hint of sea air.

Dry, medium bodied and smooth, redolent of honey and cream, faintly salty with a slight spicy note and a sweet long-lasting finish.

 

PAUL JOHN BRILLIANCE, GOA, INDIA

PAUL JOHN BRILLIANCE, GOA, INDIA

Paul John Brilliance

The six-row barley for this whisky comes from the foothills of the Himalayas. Brilliance is matured in bourbon casks, to give you absolute sensory delight.

The demerara sugars give off a whiff of sweet fragrances, with a hint of cinnamon, dash of honey and faint spices. The honey-like smoothness is offset by the crunchy-bar-like crispness. Somewhere, there is also a tinge of cocoa.