Thursday, July 28, 2016

Talisker Distillers Edition (2012) Single Malt Scotch Review & Tasting Notes

Today is Fat Tuesday, tomorrow is Ash Wednesday and then Lent starts. If I was Catholic, this would all have some meaning for me on a personal level. For me, it is more a curiosity.

However, nothing stops me from toasting my Catholic family and friends on this important time of year, and for them, I'm using one of my favorite Scotch whiskies to do it.

This is Talisker Distiller's Edition from 2012. This single malt is double matured in Amoroso casks, and comes from the only distillery on the Isle of Skye. Some consider the Islands a region of its own, others will tell you it is part of the Highland region.

Pouring it into the glass caused the air to be filled with a peaty smokiness. It is just beautiful that I don't even need to bring it to my nose to enjoy it. When I bring the glass close so I can nose it, vanilla, fruit and honey permeate the peat. It is so inviting.

A gentle swirl brings initially thin legs that soon begin to drop... And then they hang, almost as if they are glued in place. While the color is enticing, unlike with Bourbon, Scotch distillers can add caramel coloring and not get in trouble with the laws governing Scotch whisky.

As I bring the glass to my lips and let the whisky flow over my tongue, I get the gentle thickness of butter. It completely coats my tongue. Smoke follows, and then the peat is behind that. The fruitiness you expect from a Highland then hangs around for the long finish.

What some people don't care in whisky (or whiskey) is the burn. With this Talisker, that's not an issue because there is none. The smokiness does stick around on the roof of your hard palate, but it is merely a warming sensation. There is zero alcohol burn to offend.

This 91.6° Scotch is one of my favorites. It is hard to go wrong with anything from Talisker, it is an easy pleaser.

For my Catholic family and friends, I wish you a good Lent season. May you keep your promise. For everyone else, Cheers!

Monday, July 4, 2016

High West Yippee Ki Yay Rye (Batch 3) Review & Tasting Notes


Happy Independence Day, America! Today is a quintessential American holiday, which suggests we should be celebrating with something uniquely American. Bourbon, American Rye, Moonshine... those fit the bill.

Today I will be enjoying High West's Yippee Ki-Yay, which is an incredible blend of Straight Rye Whiskeys. This particular bottle is from Batch 3 and is bottled at 92°. Yippee Ki-Yay is a younger blend of whiskeys than A Midwinter Nights Dram, but it can keep up with it quite well at a lower price point. The Ryes have been finished in Vermouth and Syrah barrels.

I called Midwinter Nights Dram "Christmas in a Bottle" (to be fair, a friend first described it to me that way), so perhaps Yippee Ki-Yay can be described as 4th of July fireworks in a bottle.

First of all, the color is a deep ruby red. That's from the Syrah barrel. Very unique and enticing, because you just don't see that in Bourbon or Rye.

Next, fruity, spicy, vanilla, wood and caramel lights up your nostrils and is quite the attention getter.

The palate then explodes with candied fruit, vanilla, nuts, cereal, wine (from the Syrah barrel) and wood.

The ooh-ahh is the finish. The sweetness of wine and honey, wood and nuts just hangs and lingers.

I've seen this priced anywhere from $58 to $75 a bottle. This is definitely worth the lower end of the spectrum and takes my Bottle rating. 

Have a wonderful time tonight watching fireworks. I'll be sipping mine. Cheers!