Jul 3, 2011

two top shelf blends: one Irish, one Scottish...

Jameson Limited Reserve 18yo (40.0%): This might be my favorite of the Jameson range. I have this bottle for more than a year in my cabinet now and I am trying my best to make it last even longer. So, writing tasting notes was the perfect excuse to pour some the night before... Color: Dark amber, coppery. Nose: Old worn-out leather. Childhood memories: disintegrating leather couch in my father's office or my uncle's old bomber jacket I remember him wearing for special occasions. Artist's studio, linseed oil, dried apricots, fresh and moist tobacco leaves and a hint of cigar ash. Palate: Spicy and woody. Dried sultanas, nutmeg, cinnamon and allspice. Perfect amount of unmalted barley in the mash. Very oily and smooth. Finish: Not so long like I expected but very satisfying. Pretty sour. Spices and woody notes linger longer. Overall: If there is a gender for whiskeys this is definitely a male one. Very bold, old and masculin. I love the leather notes on the nose, so unique to this expression. The only thing I can complain about this dram is the damn price-tag. I wish it was a little more affordable. One of my favorite Irish blends...

Ballantine's 17yo (43.0%): I have to admit I wasn't even thinking of purchasing this blend before it got Jim Murray's Whisky Bible Award for 2011. Like everybody else I was also little bit surprised and very curious. Because of that I didn't want to miss the opportunity when I saw it on the shelf at Schiphol Airport on sale. Let's see what the fuss is all about. Color: Light amber, clover honey. Nose: Ruby Port, cointreau, honey, orange zest jam, garam  masala and lemongrass tea. Palate: Pretty grainy and sweet. Cream puffs and golden oreos. Oak, touch of sea salt and very vague peat. Oddly reminds me of the French quinine liquor St. Raphael. Vegetal and grassy. Finish: A lot of fresh apple notes that I didn't get before, candied citrus peels with gentle toffee. Chewy. Overall: It's definitely a very well balanced and mouthwatering delicious blend. I don't know of being the whisky of the year but I really enjoyed it. Perfect dram to go with creamy and eggy deserts like creme brulee, creme caramel, pavlova or simple custard. I also liked the plastic screw cap to be honest.
Enhanced by Zemanta