Three Ships 8yo 1st Fill Bourbon Cask 69.8% ABV

three ship 8yo bourbon cask

A single cask release selected by and bottled exclusively for WhiskyBrother&Co. This Three Ships single cask exclusive release, in collaboration with Andy Watts and his award-winning team at the distillery! Distilled in 2013, this single malt was fully matured for 8 years in a first-fill ex-bourbon cask and bottled in 2021. Only 179 bottles were produced, each individually numbered. Non-chill filtered, naturally coloured and bottled at a cask strength of 69.8%.

Appearance: Light gold/white dessert wine. Lots of sporadic droplets above a beaded swirl line and semi-viscous film. Lots of thin to medium trails form quickly.

Nose: Big ABV hit followed by honey, vanilla and lemon sherbet. A vegetal note, damp basement funk and salinity follow, quite multi-layered.
Caramel and some fruit sweetness appear after a little time, adding further balance to the salinity and vegetal notes.

Palate: A slightly oily mouthfeel with a huge spicy hit of white pepper and hot chilli, it’s tingly and almost too much.
The second sip is slightly more acclimated to the spice and reveals some sweetness, the vegetal note, plasticine and some bitterness.
After (unusually) adding a few drops of water there’s honey cereal, hops, some molasses and a more pleasant level of ABV spice.
The spice causes some cloying at the back of the mouth.

Finish: Long. Spice heat, honey and plasticine.

Overall: This one’s a really big chest warmer for seasoned whisky drinkers. I never add water to whisky and enjoy cask strength but this one surprised me. Adding water helped, but it still didn’t make me really like it.
I love these guys but this one isn’t for me. There’s too much spice, which builds to a chilli heat, and the plasticine note isn’t my cup of tea.

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