Dalwhinnie – Game of Thrones “House Stark: Winter’s Frost”

Dalwhinnie is not one of my favorite whiskies. I’ve always felt it was trying to do the same thing that The Balvenie does but with less success. That’s a totally unfair characterization, so let’s forget I said it and proceed with tasting the whisky. An an ex-bourbon matured single malt without an age statement, and at the now-fairly-standard 43% ABV…

Barrell Seagrass Rye

So back to Seagrass. Imagine if you will several parcels of rye whiskey sourced from all over the place (to wit, Kentucky, Indiana, Tennessee, and Canada) and finished in Martinique Rhum Agricole casks, Madeira wine casks, and APRICOT BRANDY BARRELS. What is this madness? I would happily slap down 90 bills for anything finished in an apricot brandy barrel, alone. I had no choice; I had to buy…

Book Review: Malt Whisky Yearbook 2022

The Malt Whisky Yearbook is an annual “field guide” to the world of malt whisky and the malt whisky industry. Author/Editor and Keeper of the Quaich Ingvar Ronde started in 2005 – and every year thereafter – compiling 12 months of news, facts, and figures from the industry while also managing to capture the overall trend and feel of the marketplace. In a way, it’s like a whole year of whisky magazine issues compressed into one compact and concise guidebook.

Chapter 7 – Prologue

Chapter 7 is an independent bottler with a compelling if slightly strained narrative. They contend that an individual cask of whisky is like a character in a story. Blending casks together is, thus, like writing a novel. It’s very poignant and poetic but I’m not sure how much it really has to do with the whisky, and long-time readers will know that we don’t really pay much attention to the marketing story around here…

Kirkland Bottled-in-Bond Bourbon – Barton 1792

Just like Very Old Barton and 1792, this Kentucky Straight bourbon was distilled at the Barton 1792 distillery in Bardstown, Kentucky. It’s a bottled-in-bond straight Kentucky bourbon which means it is at least four years old and bottled at 50% ABV. … it was an easy decision when I saw they had the Bottled-in-Bond expression on the shelf during my last shopping trip. It was only a week later after recommending it to a friend that I learned it had sold out of every Costco store within 100 miles…

Glenfiddich (14 year) Bourbon Barrel Reserve

If you’ve been around the single malt scotch market for any length of time, you probably had the same reaction to this label that I did. “Uhh… basically every single malt is aged in bourbon barrels.” So what’s so special about this particular bottle that they felt the need to slap it in large type on the label? Let’s not forget that “Reserve” means absolutely nothing….

Inchmurrin (12 year)

Inchmurrin is (confusingly) one of the brands of single malt produced by the Loch Lomond distillery near Glasgow. The brand is named after the largest island on Loch Lomond (the lake). … The custom stills at Loch Lomond are fascinating: By using a modified rectifying column instead of a traditional swan neck, the distillery is able to artificially “lengthen” the neck that condensing spirit vapor travels up before…

Copper Fox Rye

Copper Fox is a pot stilled rye from Rick Wasmund, whose Wasmund’s Single Malt I did manage to review. The rye is a mash of two-thirds Virginia-grown rye and one-third malted barley. The grains are floor-malted and then lightly smoked with 60% applewood and 40% cherrywood. The mash is then double pot distilled and barreled with a “progressive series of lightly toasted new and used applewood and oak chips” in refill ex-bourbon barrels.