72+1,121209 356

thats the amount of drams I had to taste in the Christmas countdown 2012.

Well it all started quite innocent. We, my beloved husband and I,  bought a whisky advent calendar to enjoy during December. 24 nice drams to share.  Just enough for a common weeknight when you have to drive early in the morning to get to work.

SO when did it all get out of hand?

It was when my husband got a big package to collect at the post office. In it was not only one but two whisky advent calendars- Our good friends in Gävle (north of Sweden, close to the Mackmyra Destillery) Roger and Tobbe had sent us an Adventcalendar each. Suddenly we had 3 drams a night to share.

It was fantastic and a bit stressfull. We didn´t have time to do the tasting one night. The next day we had to taste 6 drams. Missing two days would make 9 to try out and…well you see. We just had to keep up.

IMG_1358We did all the tastings blind. Most of them in our livingroom but one took place on the train to a nice tasting called The Classic Malts on Steroids. And we actually tasted  3 different Highland Park Samples from the Master of Malts first of all that journey. It was a happy evening.

I will not tell about all the drams but I will mention the one with the lowest ratings and those with the highest.

Lets start at the botton and work our way up:   Zero Points

Ben Nevis 10 yrsbottled 2008, 1st fill sherry Gorda, 453 bottles, “Hot Toddy”, SMWS 78.39, 54,4% Scotch Malt Whisky Society It looked so good with its dark redbrown colour. It tasted like butter wine and mushrooms in a very overwhelming way. Straigh to the drain.

1 Point

We will have to make a list here –

  • Tullamore Dew
  • Tullamore Dew sherry cask finish
  • Black Velvet (wonder why it got any points at all….),
  • Jim Beam Red Stag (Its not even Whiskey OR Bourbon. A bit fun though! No points for that……)
  • Auchentoshan 12 (? use to like their bottlings but this…..).
  • Swedish Wannborga Whisk (too bad…didn´t want to place a swede down here but…),
  • Glenfiddich Caoran Reserve
  • Amrut the Indian single malt (has got really nice bottlings but this one is ….)

We skip the ones in between. We will go straight to the top:

5 Points

  • Kilchoman 5 yrs 2006-2011 59% Bottled for Viking Line
  • BenRiach 15 yrs 1994 – June 2010, Cask 6695, Pedro Ximenez Puncheon, 752 bottles, OB for Japan, 55,4%
  • Elijah Craigh 18 yrs Bourbon 45% (if you say you dont like Bourbon…try this…delicious!)
  • Benromach 10 yrs 43%
  • Glenmorangie Nectar D`or 46%
  • Glenfarclas 9 yrs 1st fill bourbon barrel, 226 bottles, “A cornucopia of mellifluos sweetness”, SMWS 1.153, 57,6%

Best in show:      5,5 – 5,8 Points

  • Bunnahabhain 1968 The Family Silver, 40% (Sweetnes, sherry and sulfur in an almost perfect mix……)
  • Glenforres 12 yrs (Edradour) All Highland Malt, 26 2/3 fl oz / 75,7cl, OB, 75 proof.
  • Bowmore Cask Strenght 56%

We did survive december. In the end I had tasted at least 115 drams that month. Well maybe I shouldn´t say drams but sip of drams to be honest. Some less of,  others a whole dram. And I think I had some more that I forgot to write down. (Are you surprised I forgot ?) Couldn´t count all of them in the 346 different sorts I had tasted over the year. Had a few doubles in the calendars.

And what was that +1 dram then?

It wasn´t whisky. It was tapwater – matured in a cask for 30 days. It had absorbed 35 % of alcohol and lots of colour and taste. What points it got? Hmmm ….2,8 ……. Shame on me or shame on the established destilleries who couldn´t get up to 30 days old tapwater Devils Cut standard!