Our first tasting pack features:
Benromach Sassicaia Wood Finish (45% ABV)
Sassicaia is a vineyard in Tuscany, producing Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc barrels, and is also a geographical indicator meaning that all Sassicaia must come from the one vineyard. This whisky was finished for 29 months in these barrels, creating something unique
Nose: Glace cherry and soft spices with a foundation of oak and red wine notes.
Palate: Subtle cherry and vanilla notes with with red wine and cocoa.
Finish: On the short side with the red wine and chocolate continuing.
Taketsuru 12 Year Old – Pure Malt (40% ABV)
Named after the Nikka company’s founder, Masataka Taketsuru, this whisky is a wonderful rich pure malt. As an homage to a legend, it is certainly a legendary whisky. This expression will transport the drinker to the places Taketsuru studied whisky, both Japan and the UK.
Nose: The smell of the country with sweet fruits, grass, and some mild herbs.
Palate: Apple and rhubarb pie with toffee ice-cream as well as malty oak flavours.
Finish: Long but soft, with the biscuit and crumble elements from the palate coming through.
Macallan Select Oak (40% ABV)
This Macallan is truly something special. Not a part of their series based on colour, the Select Oak is named on the quality of flavour that the wood imparts. Macallan is renowned for its good reputation, and with this expression its clear why.
Nose: Lightly singed oak is dominant, with underlying sugary marshmallow and candied fruits coming through.
Palate: The toasted oak remains but morphs into a nuttier flavour of hazelnut and almond, with some light vanillas and citrus notes.
Finish: Medium with a bit of spicy sherry.
Glenfarclas 15 Year Old (46% ABV)
Glenfarclas rarely disappoints and this midrange expression is brilliant. If there was ever a whisky that is like drinking a Christmas cake, this is it. Jim Murray agrees giving it a huge 95 points. The big flavour suggests that there is whisky in this which is a great deal older than 15 years, but the marriage of all of them works like a charm.
Nose: Lots of sherry and spice, predominantly PX, with a touch of mint and nuts.
Palate: The sherry is there, with sultanas, orange citrus, and walnuts.
Finish: Long with a good amount of fruit and nut richness.
Laphroaig Quarter Cask (48% ABV)
This expression is brilliant, aged in large barrels but finished in a quarter cask. The small cask size results in greater contact with the wood, and so intensifies the flavour over a much shorter time. For a young whisky, it packs a big punch.
Nose: Toffee and nuts come through the hickory smoke and saltiness, with some light fruit and citrus.
Palate: Surprisingly sweet with some bicarbonate of soda and smokey peat that is unmistakably Laphroaig.
Finish: Medium but with an emphasis on fruit and a bit of tobacco.