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Jolly Toper tasting Edinburgh 24/4/8

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Jolly Toper tasting Edinburgh 24/4/8

Postby jmrl » Thu Apr 10, 2008 8:11 am

Next tasting £20/17* 7.30pm Tolbooth Tavern:-

Longrow 18yo 46%

Cadenheads Royal Brackla 1992 - 02/08 15yo rum barrel 57.3%

Cadenheads Glenglasaugh 1984 - 09/07 23yo sherry butt 46%

Cadenheads Rosebank 1991 - 02/08 16yo Bourbon hogshead 55.7%

RMW Dormant Distillery Imperial 8/10/76 29yo refill sherry butt 46.8%

available by post to mainland UK fo £3 surcharge

*members and first timers discount. Contact Mark Tel. 0131 556 5864
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Re: Jolly Toper tasting Edinburgh 24/4/8

Postby Leither » Thu Apr 10, 2008 8:57 am

Mark, this looks a great line-up - I'm particularly interested in the Brackla, if it's anything like the recent Glenrothes from a rum cask it'll be right up my street.

Others look great, including a couple of closed distilleries plus the new Longrow 18 :thumbsup:

BTW - whatever happened to MattButty from the forum, he vanished shortly after one of your tastings last year :?
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Re: Jolly Toper tasting Edinburgh 24/4/8

Postby Deactivated Member » Thu Apr 10, 2008 4:26 pm

I can't make this, but will definitely come along again to the Islay one at the end of May.

:iwbrnt:
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Re: Jolly Toper tasting Edinburgh 24/4/8

Postby jmrl » Thu Apr 10, 2008 7:29 pm

Leither the Royal Brackla is the other end of the scale to the Glenrothes and more to my personal taste. As regrds Mattbutty - don't blame me.
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Re: Jolly Toper tasting Edinburgh 24/4/8

Postby The Whisky Lounge » Fri Apr 11, 2008 11:36 pm

Hey Mark, sounds a good do - hope to make it some time when I am up in the promised land again. Have you tried the Longrow 18 yet, or are you saving yourself? Hoping to do an all Springbank/Longrow tasting soon and this is on my hitlist!
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Re: Jolly Toper tasting Edinburgh 24/4/8

Postby Willie JJ » Fri Apr 11, 2008 11:44 pm

Lots of interesting oddities there Mark. I'm interested in the Rosebank, of course.

I will now try to forget what they are. :?

Love the quote Whisky Lounge :D :thumbsup:
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Re: Jolly Toper tasting Edinburgh 24/4/8

Postby The Whisky Lounge » Sat Apr 12, 2008 12:09 am

Cheers Willie, but its the way he tells 'em!
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Re: Jolly Toper tasting Edinburgh 24/4/8

Postby TheTross » Sat Apr 12, 2008 12:14 am

Sorry to ask a daft question, but how do these tastings work? There's no way I can make it to the actual event but I noticed that the samples can be posted, which I would definitely be interested in. Are they sent out to coincide with the event or at a later date so that we taste them as and when we can and report back?
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Re: Jolly Toper tasting Edinburgh 24/4/8

Postby Willie JJ » Sat Apr 12, 2008 12:27 am

So far Stuart he has posted them out after the event. I'm not sure if there is any particular reason why though. I suspect that if you were really keen to have them at the same time as the tasting so that you can participate in the post-event discussion that Mark may be able to arrange that, but I'll probably get into trouble for suggesting it. :)
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Re: Jolly Toper tasting Edinburgh 24/4/8

Postby TheTross » Sat Apr 12, 2008 12:33 am

No no, after the event is perfectly fine - was just wondering how it all worked. Don't want you getting into trouble now! :P
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Re: Jolly Toper tasting Edinburgh 24/4/8

Postby jmrl » Sat Apr 12, 2008 7:42 am

Thanks for the pressure Willy? (ha ha ho ho).

To date the posted demand has been, shall I say, low end. But there seems to be building activity. Newbie had a bad experience with this tasting through he post as he probably received his drams about 5 days after the actual tasting. It was my intention that those involved at home can synchronise their comments with those who were present . Unfortunately due to an unpleasant series of events (not least me turning 40 and all associated obligations of getting hammer...enjoying good company) and the arrival of a certain 18 Campbeltown malt it was not to be.

So for the record next time I'm going to make a special effort to be at least semi-proffessional. Please note : I aim to please but don't always shoot straight.

Always looking to cut overheads I try to avoid buying miniature bottles for shipping drams but have reached a bottle neck (pun intended) so may have to bite the bullet and source some 3cl bottles. Can anybody recommend a supplier, it seems these things are used in labs.

Otherwise you pay me, best to phone the shop and I'll charge your card as we speak, telephone 0131 556 5864 and ask for Mark. First timers get the £3 discount on ticket price. I've yet to settle on the mail order costs but £3 probably covers most shipments. This will be 2nd class post with recorded delivery for proof of delivery. If it doesn't arrive I'll refund you. If you don't want to pay the £0.70 recorded delivery surcharge I'm afraid I don't trust you and will not refund claims of the drams not arriving. (Not too serious about this bit but being a postie for 5 years taught me suspicion.)

I'll post an outline of the distillery, tasting sheets, details of any tasting news and an updated program. At the end of the tasting any remnants are first auctioned on the night (any profit going to World Vision's Sponsor a Child scheme - we must be near £2000 now). If there are still leftovers they are decanted into 5cl miniatures and put in the raffle. Entry to the raffle is an additional £2 with anything over this going to the charity. Prizes have ranged from a Czech blend at £5 a 70cl bottle to a G & M 1955 50yo Glenlivet.

I hope this helps.
No I've not tried the LR18 but will try it for the first time with everyone else. Nice to hear from you Whiskylounge I see what you are doing and it is good.

Best go as bacon butty/children needing attention.
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Re: Jolly Toper tasting Edinburgh 24/4/8

Postby Newbie » Sat Apr 12, 2008 4:25 pm

jmrl wrote:Newbie had a bad experience with this tasting through he post as he probably received his drams about 5 days after the actual tasting.


It wasn't a bad experience at all! In fact I prefer to wait until my palate is 'in the right mood' before doing a serious tasting!

I've only dealt with jmrl once but so far its been a pleasure! The tasters even came with some information on the whiskies which was a welcome bonus and a good read!

Plus the fact that your the only person I know of who offers such a service and I'd imagine that its alot of trouble bottling and packing all the whiskies. So I can hardly complain and can only commend you on your efforts on my behalf!

I look forward to the next tasting and would highly recommend others to participate!
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Re: Jolly Toper tasting Edinburgh 24/4/8

Postby jmrl » Mon Apr 28, 2008 10:09 pm

Although Willy JJ and Leither have reported this tasting I thought I'd put a review on this thread to tie it up.

Started with the Royal Brackla. Last time I commented that the Chilli I ate hid the taste of the first couple of drams so this time i went for my regular dish:- ~Haggis, neeps and tatties. The chef must have been heavy handed witht the pepper as the subtleties of the rum cask passed me by. This is seriously the most rummy whisky I've tasted just not on this night. Otherwise everybody seemed happy enough with our entrees.

Mystery dram:- Whyte and Mackay, always thought of this as the best of the biggest blends on the market. Only complaints were in reference to lack of weight/finish.

Next was Imperial 29yo refill sherry. I've had this one for ages hoping to find it a space in a tasting. In the time I've come to really enjoy it. I thought the age apparent but as is normal the old whiskies get their age under guessed. Royal Mile Whiskies were selling this at £55 which is great for a full strength (high 40s) 29yo but point taken that the delicate nature might not deliver the expect body, depth and luxury the drinker might expect from the time in cask. No complaints were noted.

Rosebank 16yo. Although this must be the most popular 'favourite Lowlander' malt I've long thought of Bladnoch as the better. However this is possibly the best example of the Triple distilled Falkirk lady of the Lowlands I've tried. Few drams have the package of start, middle and finish where the character really changes so much through the flavour development. Long finish too. People seemed particularly pleased.

Longrow 18yo. Can't remember not using the peaty dram to finish a tasting before but here the Longrow couldn't compete with the Sherry cask Glenglassaugh. This was a very good example of Longrow in its gentler guise. Given what we had up to this point an even earlier positioning might have been wiser. With all the fuss about this bottling giving it a fair trial was going to be hard. In its defence the company spent zero on its marketing and rather the high profile discussioin on this forum may have raised expectations it would have been better to avoid when judging. The tastings are blind but knowing what is in the line up can mean the last couple of drams are easy to spot. Also the comments on the price of this bottling interested me. Macallan 18yo 43% and Glenmorangie 18yo 43% are equally priced yet not so strong. I cannot comment if they are artificially coloured or chill-filtered but I would be (pleasantly) surprised, particularly in the case of the latter process, if they were honestly and naturally bottled - I am happy to believe Macallan reject artificial colouring and have never suggested this). Longrow is free from caramel and is only barrier filtered. While Macallan and Glenmoranie, and other similarly priced 18yos, are relativelty easy to access this Longrow is far from a stock item in any outlet. Of course it is most ungratifying to see the price of some whiskies being out of the reach of those of us with pockets that have bottoms particularly when it is ourselves that helped create the whole malt market. The other side of the coin is this is what these companies do, it must be the laws of supply and demand, thats business. Also ask where your money goes. Some companies involve themselves in investing and expansion of their facilities, some are not so obviously directing profit back into the system. Ultimately whisky is not meant to be drunk nor collected, its made to be sold.

Most of us will never taste this Longrow again which is a shame because I think it needs a clean palate to best show off its qualities. Nobody had it as their favourite dram of the night. I always think of it as a failing if at least one person can't be found to see a dram as the best of the night.

Finally Glenglassaugh 23yo so much of the sherry has come through into this but still it carries the load. The sulphur/rubber/struck matches that is the most likely element to cause offence is present but seemed tolerated by most tasters with only one voting for it as the favourite. I felt the huge body and long finish more than made up for the failings of the cask but will admit this is a moment whisky:- sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't, it depends on mood and what has gone over the palate before.

Joint winners were the Rosebank and the Royal Brackla on 7 votes each out of 20 present. One set was sent out so hopefully the postal vote will lead to clearer decision.

Next tasting is the supermarket/proprietor/independent Speyside chaleng. See earlier posting on ntyhe events forum.
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Re: Jolly Toper tasting Edinburgh 24/4/8

Postby TheTross » Sat May 10, 2008 8:21 pm

And here is the postal vote! I apologise for it being very belated, but I wanted to make sure I had enough free time to go through them one by one.

Tulip nosing glass used throughout, and scores are out of 5.

#1: Royal Brackla 15yo 1992/2008 Rum barrel (57.3%, Cadenhead, 232 bottles)
Colour: Pale Gold
Nose: A little dusty. Warm and lively. Eucalyptus and fresh mint. Herbal. Malty and very citrussy - lots of sweet orange and a hint of lemon. A little creamy and honeyed too. Sort of reminiscent of buttercup syrup at times. Hints of bubblegum?
Palate: Malty, quite oily and faintly briny. Honey
Finish: Sweet, honeyed. Citrus fruit and lightly herby at the end.
Score: 3.5

#2: Imperial 29yo 1976 (46.8%, DDC, Exclusive to RMW, 408 bottles)
Colour: Pale Gold
Nose: Quite prickly. Grassy and honeyed, with a little vanilla and eucalyptus. A very faint earthiness and maybe very lightly smoked. A touch nutty and oaky. Sweeter elements in the background. Lightly briny and salty. Becomes very citrussy when given time.
Palate: Slightly briny and citrussy, with honey again. Some citrus fruits. Quite malty and minty towards the end.
Finish: Sweet, honeyed, citrussy and a little malty. Also briny and faintly buttery.
Score: 3.5

#3: Rosebank 16yo 1991/2008 (55.7%, Cadenhead, 230 bottles)
Colour: Straw/Pale gold
Nose: Quite fresh, fragrant and grassy, with a marked honey, vanilla and eucalyptus character. Pears, green apples and citrus. Fairly malty, and has a very slight dusty note after a while.
Palate: Mainly fruity (citrus, pineapple), with some vanilla and toffee. A little grassy and floral.
Finish: Slightly soured fruits and a little malt, grass and honey. Becomes slightly drying after a few moments, and something like Murray mints develops briefly. Also a little fudge.
Score: 4

#4: Longrow 18yo (46%, OB, 2200 bottles)
Colour: Straw/Pale gold
Nose: Peaty, salty and briny. Seaweed. Slight toffee notes and lightly smoked fish. A little meaty. Peppery and faint hints of aniseed and mint. Gets better with time.
Palate: Mainly briny with quite a lot of salt, but also a little malt and peat. Quite oil. Smoked fish again. A little toffee towards the end.
Finish: Slightly minty, with less brine than on the nose and palate and bigger toffee. Also slightly smoky and chocolaty.
Score: 4, 4.5 when given enough time

#5: Glenglassaugh 23yo 1984/2007 (46%, Cadenhead, 612 bottles)
Colour: Burnt orange
Nose: Sweet and very rich. Heavy sherry and dark chocolate. A touch rubbery, with a little sulphur. Pickled onion-flavoured crisps! Slightly burnt treacle toffee. Digestive biscuits/sweetmeal. Some citrus (bitter orange). A little mint appears after a few minutes in the glass.
Palate: Big. Sherry, chocolate and treacle again. Very sweet and drying (perhaps even cloying). More sherry develops with time.
Finish: Mainly winy, with some dark fruits and a slight earthy edge.
Score 4.5

The Glenglassaugh edged it, with the Longrow coming a close second followed by the Rosebank. Both the Royal Brackla and Imperial were good, but in this company they come fourth and fifth respectively in my opinion.

Surprised that the Longrow didn't come top of anyone's list, it became very, very good after some breathing had let a little of the brininess fade. As far as I'm concerned, in most other tastings I could well have voted it #1, but the Glenglassaugh was just perfect for me!

The blend was actually pretty good as well, quite complex. Would never have been able to guess at what it was though!
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Re: Jolly Toper tasting Edinburgh 24/4/8

Postby Deactivated Member » Sat May 10, 2008 8:36 pm

Ooo, I'm really looking forward to the Islay one at the end of this month now...
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Re: Jolly Toper tasting Edinburgh 24/4/8

Postby Willie JJ » Mon May 12, 2008 12:45 pm

TheTross wrote:Surprised that the Longrow didn't come top of anyone's list, it became very, very good after some breathing had let a little of the brininess fade. As far as I'm concerned, in most other tastings I could well have voted it #1,


I guess everyone thought like you did Stuart and found one of the others to be better. I'm not in the least surprised no one voted it first as it came a poor fourth for me after the Rosebank, Brackla and Glenglassaugh (the Glenglassaugh would have been higher but for the sulphur).

The drams at the tastings do get time to breathe as Mark pours them before we arrive, but I still thought the Longrow was pretty average.

Each to his own though.

Cheers
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