It’s that time of the year: we’re in December, and it’s time for a whisky advent calendar again, yay! But this time, it won’t be only whisky, as several other kinds of surprises are waiting for me. What surprises? No idea! This year again, the calendar has been made by a friend who doesn’t kid around with spirits. Remember last year? That was him. So when he offered to do that again, with a malternative twist, I jumped on it. And so, after opening the – virtual – first window and solving the riddle with friends from a common Discord group, I discovered that the first dram was a Secret Highland Malt 1983 from German indy bottler Sansibar.Read more
A few weeks ago, I drank the 500th whisky I was able to track since the passion for whisky took me. I had been drinking whisky and enjoying as a very slightly enlightened amateur for years, but got completely and utterly hooked only starting early 2018. Why? What changed? Absolutely no idea. But it doesn’t matter. What does matter is that I’m now hooked, “at last”, and that I became a bit nerdy about whisky, even keeping track of what I’ve tasted in a Google Sheet created by my good friend Brian @MaltMusings. And thanks to this sheet, seeing my 500th dram approaching, I knew what I wanted to drink to celebrate this milestone, another unicorn whisky (at least for me): my first ever Brora, from a sample very generously given by Franck aka @LaCaveDeCobalt in the form of a Brora 9th release with a respectable 30yo age statement. But before talking about this dram and seeing if I enjoyed it, let’s talk a bit about Brora.Read more
Behind the twenty-first window of That Boutique-y Whisky Company’s 2019 Advent Calendar we will be reviewing each day until the 24th of December was hidden a Clynelish 21yo batch 7 single malt, bottled at 47.8% abv by that Boutique-y Whisky Company. The story of Clynelish is a little bit complicated. The First Duke of Sutherlands created the first Clynelish distillery in the Highlands, in the town of Brora, in 1819. After a few bankruptcies, John Walker & Sons bought a stake of the stocks in 1916. However, they mothballed Clynelish in 1931, but started production again in 1939. 1967 saw the construction of a new distillery, also named Clynelish, adjacent to the existing one. Soon after that, the “Old” Clynelish was mothballed in August 1968, and reopened the next year, renamed as the famous Brora, to be unfortunately mothballed again in 1983 (they will reopen soon as the distillery is being rebuilt). The current Clynelish is a vital part of several Johnnie Walker expressions and especially the Gold Label one. The outturn of this 21yo batch 7 was 1174 bottles, and is unfortunately sold out. It seems it was sold for around £130.Read more
When I really got into Whisky, I had the opportunity to go on a trip to Scotland for the Spirit of Speyside festival.
We were celebrating Coldorak’s birthday and at the same time planning to enjoy Scotland and its distilleries. And boy we did.
One of the event we attended was Glen Moray’s May 4th 2019. May the fourth anyone? It was cohosted by Glen Moray and the SMWS that I didn’t know before then.
The SMWS is an independent bottler somehow atypical: it’s a club and you need to be a member if you want to partake in the goodies. It releases almost only single casks, cask strength, non chill-filtered whiskies at a very affordable price.
I was intrigued with the SMWS and it didn’t take long for me to commit myself to become a member. Fast forward to August 2019 and I finally did my first tasting session with the Parisian members at Mersea.