Inside the Glenfarclas Advent Calendar: Day 11

December 11th and another Glenfarclas dram for me 🙂

Today’s dram is one of the cask strength premium editions which was distilled in 2004 and bottled in 2015 and it’s 59.8% vol. I believe this was originally released for the German market.

Ooh did someone order Christmas cake? Fruitilicious baby! And chocolate from an advent calendar too…there’s a slight little mustiness that also gives allspice and the merest hints of orange rind.

Quite a powerful first sip, but of course this is cask strength and it shows. It’s a bit of a sherry tease. The spice is apparent and so is the orange. It’s sweet from the rich fruits I noticed on the nose and there’s a lovely flavour of oak too.

Warming fruity finish with oak and milk chocolate sweetness just levelled by the spice. And some malty notes too.



The GlenDronach Distillery 1995

Last night I enjoyed a second dram of the above whisky…just to be sure.

I first sat with this a good few weeks back.

When I tried it initially, I started with it in one glass, allowed it to open, and then poured it into a fresh one. It was interesting to be able to nose the first glass while enjoying getting to know this whisky.

So from that glass which had the whisky in it, I was getting chocolate, and delicious musky notes, as well as rich demerara sugar. There was the aroma of an old tobacco box, and a gentle whack of leather…

From what I was nosing in the sample was a rich heady fragrance. I was getting succulent sherry soaked sultanas and raisins. Morello cherries on the nose too…then a feint scent of menthol and black pepper. A hint of leather and the old tobacco box scent was still there, and a little nutty aroma, perhaps like macadamia nuts.

It was ever, ever so slightly waxy on the palate. It had dark bitter chocolate.

It was nutty with warming spices. There wasn’t a lot of sweetness…but there was dark burnt sugar. However this is reassuringly delicious.

Then the oak that comes through on the finish, with some black pepper warmth with those cherries making a reappearance and a dark bitter chocolate.

I really enjoyed this dram!! As I say, I’ve sat with it on a couple of occasions now, just letting it open, and then allowing it to toy with my senses…

This is definitely a dram to share on a winters night. I can picture it now, music in the background, low lights, logs crackling on the fire and a glass of this in hand… bliss!

– – – – –

GlenDronach 1995

Distilled : 01.11.95

Bottled: September 2015

Age: 19 years old

Cask Type: Oloroso Sherry Puncheon

56.9% vol.

Inside the Glenfarclas Advent Calendar: Day 10

Ho Ho Ho!

Today it’s the turn of the 21 year old, this is slightly tamer than yesterday’s dram at 43% vol.

Fruity nose. A little fresh orange and spice – cinnamon and a drizzle of vanilla essence. Not sure where this came from, but there’s a real outdoorsy fresh scent once left to open. The palate is quite malty. There’s a very slight bitter sugary taste. The malt is very prominent, with some chocolate buttons for good measure.

The spice is quite warming.

There’s a long finish on this dram, it’s ever so slightly nutty and a little dry.

I’m quite eager to get my hands on tomorrow’s dram…it being the 11th and all that 🙂

Inside the Glenfarclas Advent Calendar: Day 9

Today’s little something is the 1997 Family Cask – Cask 1 from the Autumn 2014 release, 57.8% vol. this was matured in a single sherry butt.

A luscious fragrant yet complex nose. Sweetness and summer berries. Caramel and the merest hint of vanilla, alongside raisins and dates. A little black pepper comes to the fore as it’s left to open.

The palate is smooth, then there’s the hit of pepper as it hits the back of the throat…giving a gentle warmth. Delicious oak and the sticky dates are there with burnt sugar too. It’s a mouthful and you can easily tell it’s cask strength.

The finish is warming, the spiciness remains with hints of oak.

Inside the Glenfarclas Advent Calendar: Day 8

Day 8 and Sarah was still quite sober… well it’s a whisky diary of sorts this month.

And as the eagle eyed amongst you will have spotted, today is the 18 year old (43% vol.)

On the nose, a hint of cinnamon and toffee. Then there’s some lovely fruit notes in the way of apple. There’s a bit of fudge too and I’m not even making any 😉

The palate. Smooth and malty. Lots of malt flavours in fact. Caramel and wisps of vanilla. There’s a bitterness there and raisins in fudge.

Medium length finish with a slight waxy mouthfeel and a touch of warmth from some underlying spice.

Inside the Glenfarclas Advent Calendar: Day 7

Another day, another dram. And today it’s the 17 year old.

This has quite a fruity nose, perhaps a little cherry. There’s a touch of vanilla too with some light spices. Its palate gives spice and some lonely oak flavours. Malty notes play on the palate too and of course there are sherry flavours as well as fruit. There’s a slightly oily viscous coating in my mouth. The finish is warm from the spices and there’s a taste of the oak remaining.

Walsh Whiskey Twitter Tasting

I was very lucky to have been chosen to take part in the Walsh Whiskey tweet tasting. Why? Well because this is a distillery I’d seen on Twitter, but I’d never had the opportunity to sample their whisky until now. So I guess I was more than a little intrigued.

From their website…

“Our family is dedicated to continuing to play a central role in the revival of Irish whiskey as one of the world’s most appreciated spirits. We are doing this through the recreation of some old recipes from the 19th century, Ireland’s golden era of whiskey distilling, and also through the introduction of innovative new expressions for new palettes in a new era.

We are passionate for both innovation and attention to detail. Detail in our choice of location for our distillery in an area blessed by the ingredients and climate to make world-class, premium whiskey. Detail in the creation of a distillery for distiller, visitor and whiskey-drinker alike – where manual operations reign supreme over machine so that innovative small batches can be crafted to perfection.

We believe that our passion, innovation and attention-to-detail make a real difference to the enjoyment of people who choose our whiskeys and so they drive our family’s dream to create a legacy of whiskey excellence”.

Bernard & Rosemary Walsh

So what were we being treated to? We had two drams of The Irishman Irish Whiskey and two of the Writers’ Tears Irish Whiskey.

The first dram of the evening was the Writers’ Tears Copper Pot which is a unique vatting of single malt and single pot still whiskeys. These were distilled in copper pots.

The nose delivers very delicate spices. Luscious vanilla and cold apple crumble. Drizzles of honey. Banana foams 😳 sometimes I wonder about what I’m sensing but that’s the one that fits. Honey and caramel started to then develop more now. Loving the spices.

The palate is nice and smooth with a nice coating in the mouth. Sweet and spicy with some ginger. Lovely gentle warmth in the back of the mouth from it. Lovely hints of oak too. And vanilla, then there’s a slight creaminess too and hints of cereal. Hard to describe. The finish, erm the spices are yummy and it was going down well.

We then moved onto The Irishman Irish Whiskey Vintage Cask Strength 2017. This is bottled at cask strength of 54% abv. and it was matured in first fill Bourbon casks.

The nose is interesting. Quite spicy but not. A very slight hint of vanilla. But fruity & sweet, and there’s a nice amount of wood and an older scent which is nice too. The palate… ooh now that’s a mouth full but that’s nice. Delicious rich fruit and the spice balance so nicely. Feels a bit oily on the palate. Lovely oak flavours again. Definitely feels smooth. Moving on, the finish and hmm this is nice that warmth and spice and hmm I like!

Then it was back to the Writers’ Tears and the Red Head. This is triple distilled in select Spanish sherry butts which were seasoned with the finest Oloroso sherry.

Spicy on the nose and fruity too. Quite orangey. There’s something oddly soft about the nose fragrance wise that I’m having trouble describing but I’m enjoying.

Then the palate…hmm that’s nice. The oak is just lovely again. I do love the taste of wood! The spices and sherry influence is delicious, it’s smooth and coats the mouth nicely. There’s a creaminess / smoothness to it again. With a wonderful warmth on the finish with hints orange and oak once more.

Our last dram of the evening was the Irishman Founder’s Reserve Marsala Cask Finish.

Quite nippy on the spice front. Vanilla and sweet fruits. Bits of fruitella red fruits. Fresh.

It’s palate gave mmm the same fruitella red fruits which are still there but taper off quickly. Palate seems to dip a moment but leaves oak in place of the sweetness. I’ll be revisiting this one as I had an attack of sneezes mid way.

However, what an introduction to Walsh Whiskey…it was definitely the thing to pique my interest and draw me in.

Many thank again to Walsh Whiskey and Steve Rush for this tasting. It was fab.