Back in April 2019 I had the chance to participate to a J.J. Corry Tweet Tasting, before Julien and I started this blog. It was for me the discovery of both J.J. Corry themselves and their Irish Whiskey, and the Tweet Tastings, as it was the first one ever I was selected to. Since then, I had the chance to join many other Tweet Tastings and I honestly cannot get bored or saturated of them, as they’re always great evenings tasting whisk(e)y and engaging with the brands, either distillery or bottlers (or bonders!), surrounded by people from the whisky community, exchanging tasting notes and having fun together. A bit more than a year and a half later, time for another Tweet Tasting with J.J. Corry, and I’m happy to see that I’ll be able to taste the newest batch of The Gael, as the first batch of this blend was part of the initial TT back in April 2019. But since this first J.J. Corry Tweet Tasting was before the birth of this blog, it means I didn’t introduce them yet, so let’s do that right now before reviewing the four samples we received.Read more
Time for another Tweet Tasting! Today, I had the chance to be able to join yet another Tweet Tasting. This time the distillery taking the place of honour was The Glenturret. As usual, we received a pack of samples, the packaging containing this time 4 samples and a beautiful tumbler glass. But let’s talk a bit about Glenturret’s history before reviewing the drams we tasted this evening.Read more
I guess you’re getting quite used to reading about Tweet Tastings from me now, as I’ve covered quite a few of them in the last 6 months… or more. Today, we’re back to an Irish bottler/blender, as we can see quite a lot these days. I guess it’s a sign the Irish whiskey industry is flourishing, so that’s quite good news! Let’s introduce The Quiet Man, before reviewing the three drams we got to try this time.Read more
Just as I have finished writing about a previous (and excellent!) Tweet Tasting, time for another one! The life of an amateur whisky blogger (it may sound pompous but well, I do have a blog about whisky so I guess that’s what I am?) is really hard, I know. This time, we don’t follow a specific distillery nor a specific bottler, but something new again: a person! Indeed, our guest was Gregg Glass, from Whyte & Mackay, as we tasted four whiskies he was deeply involved in creating or bottling. So as I said, time not for a distillery Tweet Tasting, but a Gregg Glass Whisky Tweet Tasting!Read more
As I had the chance to do many times before, I participated in a Tweet Tasting organized as usual by Steve Rush from The Whisky Wire on Wednesday the 23rd of September. This time, it was not a distillery, but a “new” indy… No, not Indiana Jones. As I was saying, this time it was not a distillery, but a quite new Independent Bottler called The Whisky Cellar. We received a really nice package with five samples, a notebook and a beautiful pen made with oak from a cask stave by Andrew from miawoodcrafts. By the way, if you didn’t know what he does, go check him out, what he makes is brilliant. I do already have a pen made from a Glenfarclas stave and I love it. But let’s get back on track and talk about today’s subject: The Whisky Cellar Tweet Tasting. And let’s start by having a chat with Keith Bonnington to know more about The Whisky Cellar!Read more
I am a proud member of a private Twitter group of whisky fans called The Whisky Circus, created at the beginning of the lockdown my Sorren “@ocdwhisky” Krebs, a well-known whisky blogger and now a brand ambassador for The English Whisky Company. The Whisky Circus is about 50 members big from several countries (UK obviously, but there are also people from Ireland, France – this humble writer included, Belgium, Sweden, Norway…). We meet every Sunday afternoon on Zoom and thanks to Sorren’s relations in the whisky industry, we now have one or more guests from the industry who come to discuss with us every week. Though you cannot participate in those Zoom sessions if you’re not a member of the group, you can watch the replays on Sorren’s Youtube channel, as our sessions are recorded for their most serious part. All the secrets from the trade, however, are not, sorry-not-sorry!
A few weeks ago, Sorren, with both his Whisky Circus ringmaster and The English Whisky brand ambassador hats, contacted the most regular members of the Whisky Circus to offer an English Whisky tasting with a then yet unannounced new release: the new English 11-year-old single malt. So I guess it was an English Whisky Circus Tasting. After all, the English language loves contractions. Julien tasted an English whisky bottling by SMWS before and liked it a lot, but we didn’t introduce the distillery then. So let’s talk about The English Whisky for a moment before diving into the samples.Read more
On the 20th of May I was one of the lucky people who were selected to participate to another Tweet Tasting. Hinch Distillery was the centre of the attention for that evening. Hinch is a very young distillery (so young that their own liquid doesn’t flow off the stills yet) from Northern Ireland, south of Belfast, in the town of Ballynahinch. The distillery obviously takes its name from the city’s name, which translates in Irish as “town of the island”. The distillery is in fact still on construction (a project of a mere £15 million!) and they plan to start distilling in 3 months’ time.
So, in order to have cash flow while waiting for their spirit to 1, flow, and 2, be old and mature enough to be called whisky, they do what many new Irish (and Scottish) distilleries do: they bought casks elsewhere. They sourced malt and grain whiskies from another distilleries : Great Northern Distillery, aka GND, or Cooley for the older stock (before it was sold to Beam Suntory) and blended and finished them, playing around with different casks for the finish.Read more
On Friday the 10th of April, I organized a small blind tasting with friends I had sent samples to almost a year ago. Lockdown due to the Covid-19 crisis is keeping us to meet and go to festivals, but it does not prevent us for sharing whisky with friends. Back in November 2019 we did our first kind-of-blind tasting with 4 Yoichi, and last Friday we went to another country, my (and Julien’s) country: France. On the lineup: an Armorik and Eddu, from Brittany, and an Elsass from Alsace. So like last time, we knew what drams we were going to taste, but had no idea of the order. Myself included. But let’s start by introducing the distilleries.Read more
Whisky is not a simple drink, at least for many people. For many of us whisky amateurs, this is a social drink. Sure we drink whisky alone more or less often, by ourselves, in our home, be it because we’re a whisky blogger or just someone who enjoys a good dram. But we crave for drinking whisky with friends, having the same passion, or at least the same interest. Drinking with friends, sharing a dram, that’s what makes whisky alive. And that’s what makes us alive too. In these strange times of pandemic, confinement and isolation, pubs are closed, clubs cannot organize their usual whisky tasting sessions (and the whisky club I’ve founded with a couple friends had to cancel its… second tasting, we had just started with difficulty and already we have to stop, at least for now!), and so the social side of whisky must be on hold as we need to stay home to stay safe. But whisky fans are obstinate. We can’t drink in the same room? Pff, hold my glass: we’ll do it online. And for that, we can count on Steve Rush to organize even more Tweet Tastings. And so, on Wednesday the 25th of March, we were two dozen people to join Steve and the Cù Bòcan team to taste their range for this Cù Bòcan Tweet Tasting.Read more
On Saint David’s day (the 1st of March for those who don’t know all the saints by heart, myself included), I participated to a Penderyn Tweet Tasting organized by the unmissable Steve Rush. Saint David was a Welsh bishop of Mynyw (now St Davids) during the 6th century. Saint David is the patron saint of Wales. Fast forward to the end of the 20th century. A group of friends while having a dram, decided to start a distillery, and in 1998, The Welsh Whisky Company was born. Two years later, it started distilling, and this was the first time a Welsh distillery did this in more than a hundred years. Finally, in 2004 on Saint David’s day, Penderyn Whisky was launched in the presence of HRH Prince Charles. Penderyn distillery is located in the foothills of the Brecon Beacons National Park in South Wales.Read more