Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Bladnoch First impressions

This bottle was freaking expencive 799kr or about $135 or £88
Thats almost twice what it cost in other countires, but short of staring a bloody coup and over thoughing the goverment, not much I could do, if I buy it from retailer in the UK for half of what I pay here, I would have to pay the other half in taxes.
Now this was the LAST bottle Briskeby Vin monopol had of this whisky, it was more expencive and older then I had planed on buying, I had made a decition to keep to 12 year or less, so I could develop my taste and smell on the cheaper(but not neceraly less good) whiskys.
But I just fell in love with the description of this one, and liked it was independet, non chill filtarted and obviously not added caramel, because it's very light,.
To be honest, I can bearly tell whiskys apart, I highly doubt I can tell chill or not chill filtarted apart, neither the caramel, but it's kinda cool.
First impressions:
Well it smells DIFFRENT
While my untrained nose bearly can tell the diffrence from Lagavulin 16 and Highland park 18(other then the smoke and peat) this was very diffrent, sweet like brandy infact it smelled alot like brandy, but still clearly whisky.
I'm having problems putting the smells into words, it feels very fresh and young(yes I know it's 16 years old, but feels very young and fresh), some flowers. it becomes even more open and frech with two tea spoons of water, with out water it bites your nose beeing 46% abv, but with water it's more gentile. diffently sweet brandyesc
The brandy smell does not flow over to the taste, it's CLEARY whisky in taste, clear crisp malt none peaty smoke, it should have sitrus or oranges in taste, but I can't cleary tell the sweetnes apart, mabye floral sweet flower type thing, it becomes fresher with water, again it feels young and fresh, smooth, not as smooth as the HP 18 but still smooth, the taste on the whole is deepr and stronger then HP, more taste more sweet taste, malt. floral. I do not taste the licorice or the red berries,
Short, hint of malt, no peat
A very nice dram, so far the one with most clearly difined taste and smell. alot sweeter then the others

Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Hello and Welcome

This blog wil detail my fall into whisky, I will post the od "review" but please please to listen to them, my palate and nose is not developed at all and if you know whisky and the particualr whisky I talk about you will know alot more about it then me.

Now my whisky/alcohol journey.

I started to drink alcohol when I was 16 which is a good 1-2 years or after when most Norwegian kids start to drink, norway have no age limit on when you can drink, but it is iligal to supply booze to minors, not that anybody cares about it, kids can not be punished by the law for drinking, unlike in the states were kids can get in big trouble.
The limit for buying alcohol is 18 for anything under 22% and 20 for anything over 22%.
It used to be that anything made from spirits had 20 years limit on it, so you couldn't buy finsihed mixed drinks like smirnof ice ect becasue it was based on vodka, but that is changed now.
As I said I started to drink when 16, when I asked my parents to buy a bottle of jegermister to me, we were on vecation, and my parents probebly though it was a good ide to keep an eye on me when I tried larger amount of booze.
I then did the typical Norwegian thing, which is binge drinking, anything that can be mixed with cola, sprite or fanta was drunk, I even got my self a bottle of moonshine at 96% Abv, by pure luck it didn't have methanol in it,(a few years later there was a BIG story were sevral people died or went blind after drinking moonshine with methanol in it)
By the time I was 18 I just stoped to drink, becasue I only drank when at a party and I didn't go to parties, so no drinking I still have some old vodka bottles from that time.

So from age 18 to 24 I almost didn't drink, but during the last half of my 24th year I decided to grow up, and learn to drink like an adult, my parants have always been good at that, my dad likes his night cap, not because he needs booze to sleep, but becasue it taste good, no diffrent from eating a candybar.
Thats what I wanted, but I needed something to drink, something adult, can't drink rum & coke for the rest of my life.
I knew I can't stand wine or beer, now beeing a heavy western aficionado it was whisky I decided to try.

My first taste of whisky was Chirstmas eve 09, my dad opend a bottle of lagavulin 16 yo, now not having done ANY reseach I didn't know shit, my dad uses ice in his whisky and I didn't know any better, so I got my tumbler of lagavulin on the rocks, I didn't sniff it just tok a gulp, man was I not ready, not beeing a smoker I felt I was going to get lung cancer any second.
I did manige to get it in me, it was a shock, I tasted the smoke for what seemed like days.
BUT during the chirstmas holydays I did pour me a few more glasses.
After the holydays ended I decided to go into it, I when to the outlet and bought two blended scotch, didn't know crap, tried them, DID NOT LIKE THEM, I shoted them because I coulded take the taste, had to get it down FAST and even then I kinda didn't want to drink them.
So after a few days I gave up and my dad inherited the two almost full bottles.

So next up was bourbon, it fits with the western intrest so I got a bottle of Jim Beam Black label,
Now for me this is ithe kinda whisky you get drunk on, you and a friend start to drink at 5 PM, it taste crap the first 2-3 glasses, then suddenly it tase realy realy good and then by 5AM the bottle is empty and you and your friend are both drunk and had a great eveing and night.
When I first got the bottle I drank sevral gasses a day becasue I was after all trying to lean to like the stuff, I bought the bottle on thursday and when the night came on saturday the bottle was half empty(or half full if you are an optimist) that was kinda scary, remember I had almost not tasted alcohol in 6 years and now I had drunk half a bottle in 3 days. And I had to finde out if it was the taste or the alcohol I liked, so I stoped to drink it just for a week, to prove that I didn't have to drink, and it was no problem, I just put the bottle in the cubard and forgot about it, then after a week and half I decided it was ok to take another glass, and the first thought as I taste it, was this the shit I had liked so much a week and half ago, but again after a few glasses it was just fine again, it took two more months to empty the bottle, and was my first whisky bottle I had emptied.

But even tho I could drink it, and had some tastes I liked, it wasn't that good.
So I had to continue to look, having tasted lagavulin and knowing I could drink it I bought bottle of it, the 16 year old. It's good, but as I've said I have no whisky nose or palet yet, so for me it tasted only smooth and peaty/smoky, and enjoyed it, but I didn't get any of the tastes other people say they get. I had a few friends over and we had a whisky evening, quite enjoyble to share a good whisky with friends.

Now living in norway you can't just buy willy nilly becasue alcohol is expencive. Luckly good alcohol is not more expencive then in other countries, it's still expencive but no more then in France, UK, US ect. if you buy vodka 3/4 of the price is taxes, it's about 4 times as expencive in norway as in Germany.
But if you buy the highland park 18 year old, the diffence is only £10-15, now it's still a diffrence but Norway having generaly higher cost of living ect. It's not bad at all.
And whats what I bought a 18 year old highland park, it had after all won sevral prices I liked the name, you pronuce the name as it's writen, now crazy scottich galic or pict or what not.
And here's why I'm saying you should listen to me when I talk about spesific whiskys, becasue I realy couldn't taste that much of a diffrence between the HP 18 and Lagavulin 16, there was a diffrence yes, less peat and smoke, but as I have already said I don't taste or smell the nuances(YET!!!) so while it was less smoky and peaty it still felt like a very smooth easy on the tung whisky. I didn't taste the toffee or honny ect.
People have said it just takes time, so I have to drink try diffrent whiskys and the taste and smell will come sooner or later, I've heard it can take as much as 2 years.
But the 18 year old is expencive, so I won't be drinking that much of it, becasue it would be kinda a waste.
I'll get back to it, later, so Now I have to go and try others, and this time some that are more "diffrent" from the HP Lagavulin, more fruity or spicy.
So this is on the short list of whiskys to buy.
Aberlour 10(this will be my learn to drink whisky whiksy, it's a good price and should have lots of taste.
Bladnoch 16 year old, I wasn't realy plaing on buying an older whiksy again, but when I read about it, it just sound so mouth watering I have to try it.
And Johnnie Walker Green, I don't want to try a regular blend, so this vattet malt, malt blend, blended malt ect. might be nice.

So this is how far I've gotten now, about 5 months into my fall into whisky.
If I get some money tomorrow I'll get the bladnoch(there is 1 left in the outlet)
I can only aford 1 bottle a month.

So if I get the bottle tomorrow I'll post my highly questinoble opinion of it then.