May 24, 2013

Monkey Shoulder...

Monkey Shoulder (43.0%): Now watching the rain pour down in Cambridge for five days I cannot help but remember my last summer in London and Stratford soaked in cold rain almost every day. It was tremendous fun... When I was crawling pub to pub almost every night my go to whisky to accompany a beautiful cask ale was Monkey Shoulder, period. Tonight I feel like to pour some Monkey Shoulder to remember London and talk about it a little. The whisky is a blended malt of 27 casks selected by David Stewart from three Speyside distilleries: Balvenie, Glenfiddich and Kininvie. The name comes from a temporary injury caused by working long hours with big shovels to turn the barley on malting floors in distilleries for hours and hours. Color: Polished copper, orange blossom honey. Nose: Milk chocolate with whole hazelnuts and raisins, St. Dalfour orange marmalade, dried dates and cooked prunes. Cloves, nutmeg and cinnamon. Also some sweet floral aromas: hyacinths, jonquils and daffodils. Palate: Orange zest jam, fresh bergamot peels, clover honey and allspice. Dried Turkish apricots, butter on warm brioche and clementines. It has a little watery mouthfeel but doesn't make you feel like it's lacking something. Actually suits pretty good to the style. Finish: Not short, not long... Vanilla beans, lightly brewed earl grey tea and touch of lavender. Overall: Incredible value for 30 bucks! Don't even think about it, just order a bottle... For some reason in US bars it is considered as a high shelf whisky and being charged way too much compared to Europe. I don't think it is fair to the brand. This malt is created to compete and win in its price range and definitely not benefiting to take part in a higher weight category. Anyway, I have to admit that it was way more fun to sip it in an old London pub with a pint of London Pride but it is raining pretty similar outside... A fine Friday night indeed...