Never before have so few, tasted so much, for so many!
I love this ’10 Whiskeys for Beginners’ review by Level 3 Whisky Sommelier Daniel and Master Whisky Mooch Rex from the Whisk(e)y Vault. There is also one extra whisky from The Modern Rogue’s very own Brian Brushwood.
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Daniel: “All cream and like apricot jelly preserve like you would put on toast. Goes down like water.”
Rex: “Deep rich caramel and plum. Had this yesterday after a smokey whisky and it tasted like creme brûlée. I think this could be a nice entry-level, middle-of-the-road whisky for people that are not looking for invisible, they like big flavours but but they don’t want hard challenging flavours.”
Daniel: “If you want to get introduced to peated whisky, smokey whisky gently instead straight to Laphroaig this is Monkey Shoulder, butterscotch and all that kind of thing, but with a little bit of smoke on the backend. There is a bit of iodine, there is a bit of salt, there is a bit of earth and wood shavings.”
Rex: “Highland Park 12 – The (whisky) sommeliers love it.”
Rex: “On the nose, sweetness, light, flowers. This can be the most friendly whiskey. This is not dramatic.”
Daniel: “Spicy and floral, honeysuckle. It’s like a garden with a hint of orange. I think this is a classic representation of a Highland whisky. When you sip this all you get the floral and honey notes, there is no real smokey notes. This is much more mild than Highland Park 12.”
Rex: “Jameson on the nose smells very alcoholic. Buttermilk biscuits (on the taste). Jameson, you can’t go wrong man, it’s just a classic, it really is. Jameson and Bushmills are both damn fine Irish whiskies.”
Daniel: “It’s much smoother on the taste. And this feels like a really nicely rounded of caramel. It’s not spicy. For those looking for drama, you want to get spanked a little bit, you want to get tossed around, this is not it.”
Daniel: “We both get eucalyptus in this rye or tree oil. This is a pretty mild rye as ryes go. It’s just a damn good rye. If you like a bit of spicy good you might dig a rye whiskey – right out of the gate.”
Rex: “Why I like it is because the black liquorice is really toned down and the eucalyptus is the front-leading flavour.”
Daniel: “I love Elijah Craig, it’s sort of a classic bourbon for me. I do get apple pie. Cinnamon, apple and the bread from the crust, the buttery bread. This is apple pie. This is really damn good.”
Rex: “It’s a quintessential bourbon and because it’s quintessential I’m getting cherry and vanilla. Ooooh, this is better then I remember it. I’m not getting an incredible amount of smoothness though. This is not incredibly harsh but it’s defiantly not smooth, there is some spikey notes in there.”
Daniel: “Buffalo Trace is a damn good whiskey. Now, what’s weird on this is that I got way more cherry on the nose, immediately, then I got from Elijah Craig. It’s kind of rum-ish. Classic bourbon in a more dark chocolaty category then Elijah Craig.”
Rex: “I’m getting some cherry, biscuits and apple, quite a bit of apple. It’s nice though. It’s a bit smoother then the Elijah Craig. If you’re getting into whiskey and have your heart set on a bourbon, then Elijah Craig, if you’re ok with a little bit of spikey-ness and apple pie, it’s not incredibly smooth.”
Daniel: “Ok, so, Macallan 12 is the next classic. Here’s the thing about Macallan, I think Macallan deserves it’s place in the pantheon of classic Speyside Scotch and finish Scotch. It’s such a classic, it stands as a representative of a good Speyside Scotch, it’s just that you pay 20% more just because it’s called Macallan.
Rex: “For me the oak in here, the perfect amount, the wood note in there is just the right amount. So, Macallam, absolutely, really nice beginner whisky. These aren’t light invisible flavours, they are not challenging though, so if you’re ok with some vibrance, there are several things going on in there.”
Daniel: “This is so interesting. Now, this single-barrel one, I think it’s because it’s 50% alcohol , it’s so much more complicated and interesting then the other two that we just tried (Buffalo Trace and Elijah Craig). But I don’t know that this is an entry-bourbon. I think this is a little more aggressive than I would pour for anyone new to bourbon. Rich like a formal library study, with leather sofas, a fire burning, and musty books on the shelves, thick carpets.”
Rex: “It’s wood meets cherry. Not smooth, big vibrant flavours. There’s a lot going on in here.”
Rex: “Before you go and buy Caol Ila, you need to go and buy big-boy pants. This is the definition of smokey, harsh challenging whiskies for somebody who’s getting into whiskies for the first time. This is a really fun whisky, I like it, but this it for people who like the blackest of black coffee. They want a challenge, they are not afraid of something that is going to toss you around the room a little bit.”
Daniel: “My good this is such a long video. So, here’s the thing. I love Caol Ila. As far as smokey whiskies go, it’s got this kind of light vibrant smoke. If you don’t like smokey whiskeys you will say oil, cigar, smoked ham, camp fire, damp wet grass, moss, salt water. Now, if you like smokey, challenging whiskies like Ardbeg, Laphroaig, this is light, lemon, it’s friendly, it’s got herb notes, it’s got peppermint on the end.”
Brian: “So, this is a blended whisky and I love the fact that it’s sweet like candy, and it’s got a consistency, it’s easy on the pallet. This is the one that changed my mind (about Japanese whisky).
Daniel: “Aaaaaah, oh my god. This is the least boring blended whiskey I’be had, whilst being freakishly smooth and buttery.”
Rex: “That’s sweetened butter”.