A wardrobe of Whisky Blog - tasting notes, collection and best shops for buying whisky online A wardrobe of Whisky Blog - tasting notes, collection and best shops for buying whisky online
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Stories from November, 2010

Laphroaig Quarter Cask Tasting note

By Miguel in Tasting , Recommended , Laphroaig

“Laphroaig Quarter Cask is a masterpiece of peaty whiskies. Sweet, peaty, salty and it costs around £30. What else can you ask for? ”

Laphroaig Quarter Cask
A vibrant young Laphroaig whose maturation has been speeded up by ageing in Quarter Casks. This shows soft sweetness and a velvety feel when first tasted, then the intense peatiness so unique to Laphroaig comes bursting through. A really terrific whisky and great value.

This dram has a white-like color.

Nose (96): inexistent. sweet, salt, some sweet, wood, peat. First nosing data is innacurate as the previous tasting sheet lacked of this field.

Palate (92): . some sweet, smoke, peat. really hot. Bouquet data is innacurate as the previous tasting sheet lacked of this field.

Finish (84): no finish. smoke, wood.. Finish length is innacurate as the previous tasting sheet lacked of this field.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Laphroaig Quarter Cask with 91 points over 100.

Buy this bottle at

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Islay Collection

By Miguel in News , Caol Ila , Lagavulin , Port Ellen

Islay Collection 2006

Islay Collection is a pack of some Diageo’s Islay whiskies like: Caol Ila, Lagavulin and Port Ellen. It is a pack for peat lovers. So stay away if you don’t like peat whiskies.

It is a cheap way of tasting some great malts like Port Ellen and Lagavulin.
The pack features a 20cl size bottle of:

  • Caol Ila 12 years old
  • Caol Ila 18 years old
  • Lagavulin 12 years old Special Release Cask Strength
  • Lagavulin 16 years old
  • Port Ellen 6th Release Cask Strength

I got my pack for £70 but it is usually around £100. Anyway given that Port Ellen full bottle is so expensive the pack itself is cost less than the 20cl bottle of PE.

I will post the tasting of the whiskies on the next days.

Laphroaig 1999 Coopers Choice Tasting note

By Miguel in Tasting , Laphroaig
Laphroaig 1999 Coopers Choice
A 9 year old single cask whisky from the Laphroaig distillery. This was distilled in 1999, matured in refill sherry butt number 2301 and bottled for the Coopers Choice range in 2009 There are just 780 bottles of this.

This dram has a white-like color.

Nose (92): inexistent. sea, salt, iodine, citrus, peat. First nosing data is innacurate as the previous tasting sheet lacked of this field. Like being near the shore of the sea on a calm day

Palate (88): . many peat, salt, a little sweet. Bouquet data is innacurate as the previous tasting sheet lacked of this field.

Finish (84): no finish. some peat, salt. Finish length is innacurate as the previous tasting sheet lacked of this field.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Laphroaig 1999 Coopers Choice with 88 points over 100.

Embrujo de Granada Tasting note

By Miguel in Tasting , Destilerias Liber
Embrujo de Granada
A great Spanish whisky ellaborated at Granada, just under Sierra Nevada using their fabulous water supplies and the best Spanish barley. Then this dark tawny whisky is aged for years in Pedro Ximenez cask from Jerez giving the result of a dark, sweet whisky with lots of raisins and cocoa. It is very floral.

This dram has a tawny-like color.

Nose (84): average. many floral, sweet, raisins and liquorice.

Palate (85): smooth, oily. sweet, a little chocolate, raisins, floral.

Finish (82): average. sweet, chocolate .

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Embrujo de Granada with 84 points over 100.

[UPDATE:] This wqs the a 3.5 years old whisky. One of the very first batches Destilerias Liber released. Just read the tasting note of the older 5-6 years old bottling that I tasted in WhiskyLive Madrid.

The overall experience is not bad: It is a good whisky, not too complex, on the style of the lowlands. I look forward to try it at an older age, as I have been told that they are maturing it more to create a “black label” expression ( Johnnie walker is omnipresent in Spain :P )

Destilerias Liber: Alhambra and mountains distilled

By Miguel in Featured , Destilerias Liber

Destilerias Liber creates Embrujo de Granada whisky at Padul, in the south of Granada, Andalusia. It is the first Spanish single malt whisky to be commercialized.


La Alhambra Granada Espańa

Destilerias Liber is the dream of a man, Fran Peregrina, about making whisky on the south of Spain, just under Mulhacén, spanish mainland highest mountain. Their whisky is crafted with passion, and patience, using cooper stills, the best barley from near fields and the pure water of Sierra Nevada, to mature later in the darkness of the warehouse sleeping in pedro ximenez oak casks.

Destillerias Liber was founded in May of 2001 and started operations in December of 2002. It started as a cooperative of 55 partners, most of them friends. The whole process is run by three of them. Embrujo de Granada is an artisans whisky.

The Process

Sierra Nevada Granada

The idea of creating a distillery at the south of Spain was inspired into Francisco Peregrina after reading “El Amante del Whisky” ( Whisky Lover ). They decided to run the full process at the distillery: flooring, brewing, distillation and maturation in american oak casks.


The water that comes from Sierra Nevada natural park and the malt is choosen from near fields. After that malt is milled and mixed with hot water to create the grist. The wort is then filtered and the yeasts are added to it to start the fermentation that last between 48 and 72 hours. The result is a beer of around 6ŗ to 8ŗ.


Still where Embrujo de Granada is distilled
The stills, created by a copper artisan at the Albaicin, Granada and designed by Liber, distills the beer two times: the first up to 25ŗ to 30ŗ and the next day removing heads and tails up to 60ŗ.


This spirit is stored in american oak casks of 600 litres that contained Pedro Ximenez sherry for ageing. The whisky is matured at the warehouse around 5 years before being reduced to 40ŗ and bottled from a single cask. The maturation is faster than scotch whisky because the weather alternates very hot summers with cold winters. The angel’s share varies between casks but it is around 6% per year.

Embrujo de Granada: the Whisky

a bottle of Embrujo de Granada
The whisky is not coloured nor chill-filtered. Each batch consists of a single cask although sometimes it is blended with other casks to keep up a standard flavor and color.

Read the tasting note.

Five chances to win a year's supply of whisky!?

By Miguel in News

Golden dram picture

Master of Malt have launched a Golden Dram Competition in which five lucky winners will receive a year’s supply of whisky from the world’s greatest distilleries.

The competition was launched to celebrate the release of Master of Malt’s dram sets – 24 different tasting sets showcasing the world’s finest spirits. Each set includes five beautifully labelled, wax-dipped samples, specially selected by the Master of Malt tasting team. There is a wide range of sets to choose from including an Old and Rare Whisky Tasting Set, a Regions of Scotland, a Super Peaty Whisky Tasting Set, and many more.

Golden Drams have been hidden in five lucky tasting sets, and if you find a golden dram before the end of November, you win a free Gold Membership (RRP £499.95) into Master of Malt’s Dram Club. Gold members receive a year’s supply of whisky, with 10 exquisite drams every month! That’s a glass of superb whisky every other day!

Read the full story »

What would I buy for up to 50 €? (III)

By Miguel in News
a bottle of Macallan 10 years old
a bottle of Amrut whisky
Compass Box The Spice Tree
a bottle of Highland Park 12 years old

The complex flavours

These whiskies are more complex on their flavours, usually spices, oak, malt, sweet. They are also a safe bet. My first single malt was a Macallan and it started up my passion about whiskies.

Go and get a bottle of Macallan 10 years old of the Sherry Cask series with that rich oloroso flavour. It is like being at Gonzalez Byass bodega at Jerez.
You can get a bit snob and get a bottle of Amrut whisky, great whisky, sweet, spicy and with a good finish.

Or give a try to Compass Box artisan whisky The Spice Tree.

Highland Park 12 years old is a 4×4 whisky: sweet, honey, vanilla, peat. All on the right proportion and with a great texture and a long finish.

What would I buy for up to 50 €? (II)

By Miguel in News
a bottle of Ardbeg 10 years old
a bottle of Laphroaig Quarter Cask
a bottle of Bowmore 12 years old

The peaty whiskies.

Peated whiskies are not for everyone: either you love them or you hate them. I personally like them a lot.

Islay, known as “The Queen of the Hebrides”, is the southernmost island of the Inner Hebrides. It lies in Argyll just west of Jura and around 25 miles (40 km) north of the Irish coast and Rathlin Island, which can be seen on a clear day

Islay is the fifth largest Scottish island[3] and the sixth largest island surrounding Britain. It has just over three thousand inhabitants. It has a total area of almost 620 square kilometres (239 sq mi). Its main industries are malt whisky distilling, and tourism largely based on whisky and birdwatching.

You can sail to Islay shores with an Ardbeg 10 years old with its awesome peat and its fragant citrus aromas or get a bottle of Laphroaig Quarter, an incredible sweet salty peaty experience.

Bowmore 12 years old is a peat and salt combination that is hard to forget.

What would I buy for up to 50 €? (I)

By Miguel in News

Whisky, like many other things in life, isn’t better for being more expensive, older or being finished in a port wood cask. There are great whiskies on the range of 20€-40€ that you, as I do, can enjoy a lot.

A bottle of whisky, unlike wine that have to be consumed once opened in a few days, can last a lot opened. So expending 50 € on a bottle means that you and your friends will enjoy it several times. Of course unless you do a party :P

I’ll divide the whiskies in three big categories for this:

- Sweet
- Peaty
- Complex

The sweet flavours

On this kind of whiskies you will find the kind friendly sweetness of the malt. They are easy to drink and if you like whisky you will like them for sure.

You can get for that money a bottle of The Balvenie 12 years Doublewood, a sweet, honey whisky.

You can jump to the bourbon that is a drink that must be rediscovered, if you tried Jack Daniels and you didn’t like it, give a try to Buffalo Trace.

If you like the style have also a look to Greenore 8 years, great vanilla, sweet, oily.

If you could drink only one whisky...

By Miguel in Tasting , News

bottle of Lagavulin 16 years old

If I am forced to choose a single whisky that I would have to drink for the rest of my life, and that I would have to keep buying for the rest of my life ( money! always money! ) I would go closed eyes for Lagavulin 16 years old.

It is cheaper than Macallan, more tastier than Ardbeg, peatier than Bowmore and has the great nose of the three. It is peat, sweet malt, with a great thing on the nose that I associate with the Macallan Fine Oak, don’t know: perhaps vanilla? a bit of oak? citrus? floral? I don’t know, I just love it.