Feb 24, 2017

Stalk and Barrel Red Blend...

Stalk and Barrel Red Blend (43.0%): And now the Red Blend from Stalk and Barrel... Compared to the Blue Blend I reviewed on Wednesday this one has a higher content of aged single malt and rye whiskies in the blend.

Color: Darker than the Blue Blend. Oaked Chardonnay, yellow gold.

Nose: Cocoa powder, barley grist and cumin. Dusty and chalky... Latte, buckwheat honey and bitter chocolate. Empty plastic tupperware, lime soda and spearmint. Sourdough bread crust and dried strawberries. With a few drops of water we get eucalyptus, more chocolate and marzipan.

Palate: Oh, my... Rye... Cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg. And malt follows: Clover honey and beeswax. Corn syrup and toasted oak to wrap everything nicely. Cardboard boxes and lemon pits. Water brings all the layers closer to each other... More enjoyable now but harder to pull out tasting notes. It basically tastes just great now...

Finish: Medium to short... Linseed oil and black pepper. Warming...

Overall: I like the Red Blend more than the Blue Blend. I know that both blends are bottled for totally different purposes and it is not so fair to to compare them with each other but you cannot help it in this case. It is a much bolder and thicker recipe... This whisky can be sipped neat or mixed... It is one of the bottles that would make you happy to see in your cabinet when you come back from a long day in the office. Like always thanks to Raj Sabharwal and PVI Global for the sample.

Price: $40

Feb 22, 2017

Stalk and Barrel Blue Blend...

Stalk and Barrel Blue Blend (40.0%): Still Waters Distillery from Ontario, Canada is one of my favorite North American distilleries of the last decade. Their whiskies are consistent in style which I happened to like a lot and you know that you won't be surprised in any new release they bottle. They just get better in time... I like their single malts, ryes and blends they bottled in past years but didn't have a chance to taste their Red and Blue Blends which were released last fall. Thanks to Raj Sabharwal and PVI Global I received both samples a couple weeks ago and will start with the blue blend today... It is a blend of rye, single malt and corn whiskies and replaced the white label blend in their portfolio so far I know.

Color: Lemon chiffon, straw.

Nose: Very thin and light... Everything is kinda in a distance: Acetone, paper glue and polenta. Marzipan, chocolate milk and Granny Smith apples. You have to be really focused to get the aromas, it is an incredibly quiet and shy nose. And very young...

Palate: Very thin on the palate as well... It is a light and easygoing whisky. Reminds me the light whiskeys from MGP. Underripe Concorde pears and Honeycrisp apples. Some watered down rye whisky notes: nutmeg, cinnamon and green wood. Orange bitters, lemon bars and caramel fillings.

Finish: You would think that it will be short but it's not short. Starts with lemon juice and fade out with white pepper. Warming.

Overall: It is a sweet and mellow everyday whisky. I would say it is in the same category with young Scotch blends with high grain whisky content and like I mentioned above with American light whiskeys. I can see how easy it would fit in every possible highball or how refreshing it would be in a tumbler with a lot of ice. It's created for it... If I had a bottle at home I would save it for summer afternoons. I didn't even think of adding water by the way. It's good as it is... Thanks again to Raj Sabharwal and PVI Global for the sample.

Price: $33

Feb 19, 2017

Alander Spiced Rum...

Alander Spiced Rum (43.0%): Well, I have to admit here that spiced rums never been an interest of mine. Don't get me wrong, I love rum and I absolutely have nothing against the spiced rum category but somehow I never had a chance to taste one that I really enjoyed... But that shouldn't stop me from trying and here we go again: A spiced rum from Far North Spirits sitting on my desk. The label says that the spirit is distilled from sugar canes sourced from Louisiana and spiced with vanilla beans, cinnamon, allspice, cloves and espresso beans.

Color: I'll be damned... Straw, Pinot Grigio. Not washed with caramel coloring to a point where you cannot see through. Definitely promising now...

Nose: Nice, at this point it is clear that it is not one of those syrupy and over-spiced rums I was afraid of tasting again... Very subtle nose. Butterscotch and butter toffee hard candies. Plastic shopping bags and cumin. After allowing it air for some time vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg. Carrot cake with tons of cream cheese frosting and I mean tons of frosting... Milk chocolate, green grass and a quick walk-through Manhattan Macy's perfume department... Did I mention frosting..?

Palate: Here are the spices... Cloves and cloves and more cloves on the palate.... Cinnamon, soft unsalted butter and vanilla extract. The label says espresso but what I am getting is more like a latte with a lot of steamed milk. Condensed milk from the tin, stainless steel lunch boxes and pumpkin beer.

Finish: Kinda short if you don't count the young alcohol burn... More like a sudden drop. New make spirit, Sigg water bottles and cinnamon.

Overall: Actually it has a very subtle nose and palate as far as the spiced rums go... Everything is nicely balanced, not overwhelmingly sweet and pretty tasty. Finish was a let down for me but I'll take it at this point. At the end I'll be honest here... This is mainly a whisky blog and I am definitely not the right target audience for this product but even I can see myself enjoying it on a hot day with lots of ice in a long drink... Or Dark 'n' Stormy..! Yes, it would make a killer Dark 'n' Stormy... It is also very fairly priced for my two cents. Thanks again to Cheri Reese from Far North Spirits for the official sample.

Price: $33