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“Because you can't buy happiness... but you can buy whisky and that's pretty much the same thing”

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Stories from April, 2013

The Balkan Tiger and the Ardbeg's whispers

By Miguel in Uncategorized , Tasting , Ardbeg , Bunnahabhain , Compass Box , Wemyss

Welcome to a new session of my random blind tastings! This one is WTF Tasting 003.

If you recall previous sessions, one of my biggest “problems” with whisky tasting was to make my mind to choose a set of drams to taste. I love peated whiskies and mid age sherried drams but once you start tasting one after the other it becomes a bit plain ( with great surprises from time to time )… so why not just add some spices into the mix?

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WTF Whisky Tastings is just a new fun way of lowering my samples’ box level with a flight of four and five random drams taking blindly from the box.

So here are this week flight…

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Glory of the Grain Tweet Tasting #GrainWhiskyTT

By Miguel in Tasting , Featured , Cooley , Nikka , Cameronbridge , Invergordon

Yesterday we make some noise at Twitter. Steve Rush of The Whisky Wire invited me and around 20 more whisky lovers to a great blind tasting proposal: Glory of the Grain Tweet Tasting.

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Have you tried Grain Whisky? No? Oh, so don’t read the article. Pesky beverage, don’t even pay attention to it. It doesn’t worth your time…

If you have tasted them I can no longer conceal the secret so anyway, let me show you what we tasted blindly. It was quite fun and surprising because all but one of the samples were guessed by someone. My nose isn’t so skilled on grain whisky. Pity!.

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Rum Tasting Session: Argh! Avast Ye!

By Miguel in Tasting , Rum

Oh man! I hate my work.

I was there working on the webpage and tasting some delicious whiskies when I got an email from Jean-Marie asking me if I want to join them in tasting blindly some rums. Oh my God, such a problem! Who would want to taste such pesky liquor distilled for pirates to support their pesky living conditions.

Of course I couldn’t but to accept such a wonderful invitation! And so here I am with six samples of rum. I just hope they are not cheap mainstream blended rums. Ummm! The delights of blind tastings!

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The smell of the drams is simply outstanding and delicious. Definitively I am going to enjoy this…

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The Mermaid, the Witch and the Beauty: WTF Tasting 002

By Miguel in Tasting , Old Pulteney , Glenrothes , anCnoc , Glenury Royal

Ouch! After a fantastic beginning with the WTF Tasting, I am back with a second WTF blind tasting.

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Again, just in case you are new to this, my new way of tasting, I introduce my hand in the samples box and grab four or five samples of whatever it is inside: single malts, blended, rums, gins, vodka, whatever means whatever!.

What in my opinion makes this kind of tasting so awesome is the surprise factor. You have absolutely no idea of what you are tasting so only color and the beverage itself can make you rate it, no prices, no fancy bottles, no stunning statements, no marketing, just pure whisky passion. [NOTE to self: Buy opaque tasting glasses]

Well, let’s see what the f*** I tasted…

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Why I hate Johnnie Walker

By Miguel in Featured , Ardbeg , Johnnie Walker , The Macallan , Whisky

Well, hate is a too strong word, so maybe dislike may be better. Umm!… no, hate is fine, pure distilled clear hate. But anyway, let me explain it to you…

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As you know I am from Spain, a country that in less than forty years moved from very poor to reasonably rich ( and it looks like back at fullspeed to poor again ) place. So, as in most in-development countries we had an special interest in those kind of luxury products that come from abroad, for example, Rolex watches, Mercedes Benz cars and Scotch whisky.

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So imagine, a country where monthly income moved from £150 to £1500 in less than twenty years… so we were a nice market niche for Scotch Whisky industry, despite the fact that Spanish biggest selling whisky is DYC. So we were invaded with hordes of best whiskies Scotland could produce; Johnnie Walker Red Label, Ballantines, J&B, Cutty Sark, Dewars White Label,… you get an idea of the situation, don’t you?

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WTF Tasting 001: I Like

By Miguel in Tasting , Featured , Master of Malt , Canadian Club , Caperdonich , Glenburgie , Glencadam

Hello!

Welcome to this new serie of tastings that I starting right here and right now. What the f*** is WTF Tastings is listen to you asking? Let me explain…

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In these three years I have tasted almost 1,000 whiskies and I have realized that although I do my best for not to score whiskies because of its name, its bottle or its price I end up doing it. But don’t despair! I have decided to use a new method to grab samples and taste it. I call it WTF!.

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Whisky Tasting Session 2013-02

By Miguel in Tasting , Glenlivet , Bunnahabhain , Auchentoshan , Littlemill , Benrinnes , Wilson & Morgan

Oh my! Time goes so fast. We are already in April! So here are the results for this second session of Whisky Distilleries Tasting.

As usual Jean-Marie Putz of Whisky-distilleries.info proposed six unnamed samples on a stunning box like previous tastings.

As I explained a blind tasting is a quite interesting experience because tasting whiskies in this way you really pay more attention to the whisky and less to the bottle. I am enjoying so much this kind of tastings that I am starting doing myself them with my samples, keeps your eyes peeled for more info about this soon.

But anyway, here are the whiskies…

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How to make whisky matured cheese

By Miguel in Ardbeg , Whisky , Cooking

I am not sure if you have tasted this Islay Whisky matured cheese.

It is a mature cheddar cheese with a delicious taste of whisky. It is expensive but it really worths the money. So far so happy.
The problem arised when my supermarket decided they were not going to stock it anymore (Why?! You have sold it out! Go buy more!). So after a few weeks of investigation and trials and error I got the correct way of doing it myself at home.

So keep reading with me for this unfathomable resource of pleasure.

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Highland Park Loki 15 years old Valhalla Collection

By Miguel in News , Highland Park

Well, after reading Serge tasting note about Highland Park Loki, I have decided to eat my own words and buy a bottle of it. I usually have enjoyed the drams that Serge has scored over 90 and although I still think Loki is extremely overpriced, maybe £60 would have been a good price, I know that after Serge scoring it will be sold out in a matter of days…


Let’s wait for it and see if I have done a good buying decision.
You can read the Press Release note after the break.

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Balcones The Single Malt with an American character

By Miguel in Tasting , Balcones

A few months ago I saw a release of four new American whiskeys from Balcones Distillery and although interesting they were a bit expensive, over £60, so I decide to skip and buy samples instead ( first mistake! ).

Balcones is the first legally ( hello moonshiners! ) established Texas distillery with just barely five years old. The whole distillery and the distiller’s equipment was built by them, nail by nail as they say, and has that lovely amateur-ish look of things done with great care and passion.

So, the whiskies…

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Johnnie Walker Red Label named Best Whisky in the World

By Miguel in News , Johnnie Walker

Oh my God! What a great night we had! After tasting four thousand single malt whiskies in a row and not being able to choose a clear winner someone appeared between the panelist of this prestigious whisky award with a bottle of Johnnie Walker Red Label and said: “Thou guys hafe to tafte thif one…iz zoo awezome!” and you know, being late, the preasure to choose a winner before we skip the deadline for a third time…

Anyway, despite we weren’t on the best condition after several not-too-bad 40 years old single cask whiskies, we agree to taste this pinnacle of blenders’ artwork.

We took the first sip, someone at the other corner of the table collapsed but I am not sure if it has something to do with this delicious ambrosia, and then the rest of us that were able to stand up agreed that this was the very best whisky Scotland has ever produced.

Soo, here it is! Congratulations to Johnnie Walker for this very-well deserved award!.

I usually provide links to shops so you can buy the drink I am talking about but our panelist told us that the bottle was so rare and exclusive it wasn’t available on whisky shops. I am sorry.