These are tasting notes from our Sipping Shed tasting with Dan Hipshon, The Sipping Shed’s founder.
The Sipping Shed exists for the love of whisky. The history, the places, the people, the process, the unforgettable taste… the story of whisky. We wanted to tell that story our way, with our whisky and so The Sipping Shed was born…The Sipping Shed
Linkwood 11yr old, 59% ABV.
Appearance – It’s light gold in colour, it’s very viscous and beads up on the glass and has lovely teardrop legs.
Nose – There’s some menthol here, sweet lemon, pineapple slices, red cherries, it’s so fruity. I’m also getting some cereal notes, sweet pastries, apricots too, and icing sugar, I do love this drop.
Palate – Man that’s a palate and a half, the abv works really well and we have strawberries, cherries, raspberries, apricots, nectarines, hard boiled fruit sweets. This develops into a more citrus fruitiness, grapefruits, pomelo, orange rind, there’s some white pepper too, and some oak coming through also.
Finish – Long, very fruity, wood and white pepper spices, it’s quite gentle tbh, and a darker fruit note also comes through just before it starts to fade, so nice.
Overall – I tried this Linkwood in a Tweet tasting and fell in love with it, it’s so confectionary like, and i love that flavour profile, it is my favourite to be honest.
Blair Athol 11yr old, 59.1% ABV.
Our Blair Athol is 11 years old, 59.1% abv and from a refill hoggie.— The Sipping Shed (@TheSippingShed) December 3, 2020
This should be available to order from our website on Friday 11th#thewhiskeychaps #sippingshedwhisky#thewhiskeychaps #sippingshedwhisky
Appearance – This more of a mid gold in colour, again very viscous, and thick syrupy legs.
Nose – Musty, tropical and stoned fruits, cinnamon, black pepper, fruit cocktail syrup, and again I’m getting some menthol too. Lots of black cherries coming through now, toast, flan base, and a little nutty tbh.
Palate – Yes very oily tbh, tropical fruits, stoned fruity, very warming, sweet liquorice, caramel, a little white pepper, minimal menthol.
Finish – It’s quite long, initially fruits but gives way to oak, white pepper, more nuts, chill spice, and it gets spicier @gordonsmith63.
Overall – Another cracker of a dram, I’ve not tried many Blair Athol whiskies, but this one is superb, i love the nuttiness it brings with it, not something i get very often in whiskies, very nice indeed.
Ardmore, 56% ABV, Ex-Bourbon Cask #1313, 67 bottle outrun.
Appearance – Damp straw in colour, beads up on the glass, covers the glass, lovely teardrop medium thick legs.
Nose – Sweet peat, bbq sauce, I do love this nose tbh sweet liquorice, damp forest floor, Pine needles, carbolic soap, black cherries.
Palate – Lovely sweet peat, peanuts, not had that before tbh, strawberries, cranberries, orange rind again, black cherries, damp leaves, ginger, cinnamon, sooo much going on.
Finish – Warming, very spicy, long again, bbq meat, cinnamon, black peppercorns, bbq sauce, that foresty feel again, it’s a super drop tbh.
Overall – I tried the batch 1 of this Ardmore, that was a superb drop, ex-sherry cask finished, this one is all ex-bourbon cask, and it really showcases the whisky, another super drop that i’d gladly sit with and sip.
Caol ila 10yr old, 60.1% ABV.
Appearance – Light straw/ white wine in colour, it’s very viscous on the glass and has medium thick legs.
Nose – More of a bonfire ash here, cereals and pastry note, light bbq sauce, cola.
Palate – BBQ fire ash, red berries like the nose, coastal air, sea spray on the lips and tip of tongue, I also get sweet lemon and royal icing, no mater how much peat there is they still persist, lovely dram.
Finish – Long side of medium, oak, bbq bonfire ash, slightly herbaceousness, quite oily too, and sea spray caught in the mouth, a belter imho.
Overall – Yep another super drop, a super Caol ila tbh, all the distillery DNA is there to enjoy, bucketsful of flavour, not one for the feint hearted.
Bunnahabhain staoisha 7 yr old, 58.1% ABV.
@StillSurreal @whiskeychap @jenkaloid— The Sipping Shed (@TheSippingShed) December 3, 2020
Our Staoisha 7 year old is a
peated Bunnahhabain. I wanted to let you taste a work in progress. This wont be bottled soon but it's got lots going on already #thewhiskeychaps #sippingshedwhisky
Appearance – Very light straw in colour, beads up on the swirl line, and eventually drops syrupy teardrop legs.
Nose – Fruity peat, vanilla custard, cereals, flapjack, this could be a Smokey jam tart, definitely apricots and peaches, and a very light menthol.
definitely a jammy note coming through.— The Sipping Shed (@TheSippingShed) December 3, 2020
Palate – Loads of salinity, Maldon rock salt, it’s really oily too, stoned fruits, also very coastal, black peppercorns, chilli’s, oak, ginger. I’m getting hand rolling tobacco now, raisins, more salinity, figs? Some general stewed dark fruit notes, very nice.
This cask has really come to life and made a lot of progress in the last years. More so than the 3 or 4 year proceeding it. Peat can be quite rubbery when the whisky is young. This is starting to mellow and become an enticing sweet smoke now.#thewhiskeychaps #sippingshedwhisky— The Sipping Shed (@TheSippingShed) December 3, 2020
Yep, the peat and fruit carry through to the palate. I think, with the exception of sherry cask non peated, this is my favourite combination of flavours in a whisky #thewhiskeychaps #sippingshedwhisky— Whisk(e)y Chap 🏴🥃 (@whiskeychap) December 3, 2020
Finish – Salinity as I raise the glass to my mouth, quite long, another spice monster @gordonsmith63, very oily in flavour, sea spray, chilli’s, dark chocolate, raisins, black cherries, and liquorice, very very nice.
Sounds perfect to me mate 👍🥃— gordon smith (@gordonsmith63) December 3, 2020
It's a good drop now but i do think it's got a lot of developing to do to become a great dram. There's lot of rawness and rough edges. I think the four prior drams mask some of the youthful elements. #thewhiskeychaps #sippingshedwhisky— The Sipping Shed (@TheSippingShed) December 3, 2020
Overall – Considering Dan thinks this dram needs more time, i thinks its a great whisky already, it’ll be glorious when he thinks it is ready, and the salinity from it lasted further into the evening, super super stuff.
Overall thoughts from the tasting – To be honest i had high expectations for this tasting as i’d tried some Sipping Shed whiskies before, and this evening exceeded my expectations. Dan and the Sipping Shed do aim for quality, I’ve now tried 7 of their bottlings and they’ve all been excellent whiskies, amongst the best I’ve tried to be honest, long may their great work continue.
Thanks to – Dan Hipshon for his time this evening and sending out these samples for us to try. follow The Sipping Shed below on Twitter.Follow @TheSippingShed