Blended malt whisky.
White wine/straw in colour, it has a reasonably thick swirl line, with slow running medium thick legs.
We’re straight into it with juicy sweet lemon and a light menthol note. A meaty aroma is joined by cocktail cherry syrup from the jar, a combination i love in whisky. Unexpectedly i get a whiff of smoke and sandalwood coming through, unexpected and wonderful.
I have to say that there are aspects of some Speyside whiskies on the nose, some of the aromas come with a familiarity. With more time i’m getting seared pineapple rings and apricot jam. A late flourish of perfume and sawdust finish the nose for me.
The palate does come across a little thin to be honest, which is shame. I’m finding it’s surprisingly white pepper spicy and there’s plenty of smoke here too, with milk chocolate thrown in.
Grains and cereals eventually surface with bbq sauce, pineapple rings and apricots bring lovely fruit sweetness. A mustard like tang, perfume and cut grass lead the palate towards the finish.
Medium length i’d say, dark chocolate, tannin’s and espresso coffee bring some bitterness. Bonfire ash comes and has a real push before icing sugar sweetness appears for a few seconds and the finish fades out.
As i’d not heard of this whisky before i thought i’d go online and check out it’s background, i ended up on the reviews underneath the bottle on the Master of Malt website. The majority of reviews were rather negative to be honest, all except one review that said they couldn’t understand why the other reviews were so negative, they liked it.
So i opened my sample feeling as neutral as possible, but still a little unsure of what i was going to make of it. After sitting with it for an hour nosing and tasting i came to the conclusion of the single reviewer on the website, why were the other reviews so negative?
This dram isn’t a “WOW” dram, no mind blowing will go on here, but as far as aromas and flavours go i rather liked it. I didn’t find it difficult to find said aromas and flavours, and what i did find i really enjoyed. There is no doubt that being taken up to say 46% ABV would bring much more to the glass (including mouthfeel), but it certainly wasn’t “bad” japanese whisky. I also think some misread the description of the whisky, it is a a blended Malt whisky and not blended grain and malt whisky, easy for some to pick up on, but not so for all i suspect.
Would i buy a bottle?
If you read my reviews you will know that i like and would buy the majority of whisk(e)ys i taste, i generally find things i like about them, for various reasons, this is where i’m a little conflicted with this one.
On the positive side i like the aromas and flavours this whisky offers, and it’s all malt whisky, on the negative side is the fact that it has no age statement, and linked with the price, £90, i would like to know this, also i can get other great bottlings for less money, possibly two bottles for the price of one bottle of this.
Sadly this time it is a no from me, shocking i know, but i just couldn’t justify paying £90 for a 40% ABV NAS bottle of whisky that could offer more.