“A marriage of carefully selected and blended sherry casks makes up this rich and fruity expression. Each yearly batch of our Sherry Cask Single Malt Whisky is unique, drawn from our finest American and Spanish oak hogsheads & butts, some of which have been seasoned with dry Oloroso sherry and others with sweet Pedro Ximenez. All have been sherry-aged through their full maturation for a deeper and more flavourful whisky” – Cotswolds Distillery
Appearance: Lovely dark autumnal amber. As you’d hope for, from a decent quality drop!
My only reservation is the colour of the label(s). I’m not a fan of purple generally, and I don’t like it on a bottle of whisky. Sorry.
Nose: Little ethanol, which surprised me given the ABV. Lovely sweet icing sugar and sherry notes. Melon and banana, slight pear drop barley. Cherry and plum fruit pie, with buttery pastry.
After sitting for a while, there’s oak and leather notes at the edge of the glass, these are masked by the sweetness, when smelling directly over the glass. Very friendly nose Indeed!
Palate: Buttery mouth feel, not as oily as some, but a nice viscosity none-the-less. Immediate sweetness, very closely followed by the welcoming ‘Kentucky hug’ to warm the sole and let you know you’re drinking a good whisky!
Aniseed and Christmas spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, all spice) support, some white pepper too.
The palate’s more spicy than I’d have assumed, judging by the nose. Took me by surprise, but not in a bad way.
Finish: Woody notes, white pepper and the spices linger for some time. There’s sweetness there, but as the drinking process progresses, these aromas and flavours are overtaken by the more spicy side of this whisky.
Overall: I’m a big fan of Cotswolds Distillery, and have been for some time. I’ve not tried anything these guys have crafted that I haven’t really enjoyed. Their single malt is wonderful and the Founders Choice a joy. I wasn’t blown away by the peated, but it’s still a good dram.
This is no exception (label colour aside!) I love those great counterpart expressions. It’s friendly to start with, but starts to challenge the palate, offering some pleasant surprises. It evolved in the glass well too, every sniff and sip offers something slightly different from the last.
If you like your sherry cask whisky, then I recommend this highly. If you don’t, I still recommend it! If you’re trying to tempt a friend into the whisky world, you’ll do well to try this one out on them, it’s very approachable.