Re: What did you drink last night?
What did I drink last night you ask? Well, it was our annual tasting on Wooden Lake and a group of 9 of us joined together to share and enjoy some fine whiskies from Speyside together. Some have been tasted before and some are very hard to access now in Ontario. We enjoyed an evening of fine single malts and cameraderie surrounded by the wilds of Northern Ontario.
This was our fifth annual tasting and the 12th one that I've organised over the last half decade. (Not including my annual New Years Eve celebration with a special bottle and a couple of close friends)
With no further ado, here's what our evening comprised of:
"Banffshire Beauties" First flight - Glenfarclas
Glenfarclas 12 yo
Colour: Old gold
Nose: Honey with a hint of pepper
Body; Long and rich, fullbodied
Palate: Rich and full with a hint of spicyness
Finish: Warming and Spicy with a long hot finish
Colour :Reddish gold to amber
Nose: Sweeter on the nose that the 12, spicy odours
Body: A bit richer than the 12
Palate : Spicy and smooth, it sneaks up on you
Finish: Lovely spicy warming finish, a bit peppery.
Gallery Comment: "Like nylon stockings and high heels on this one, more refined"...
"Jesus Murphy this is good sh_ _ !"
Glenfarclas 17 yo
Colour: Deeper reddish gold
Nose: Complex with honey and floral yet velvety. Has the same "family nose" but with more depth.
Body: Longer and slow flowing
Palate: Velvety toffee
Finish: Honeyed and sweet with a warming spiciness but less heat than the 15.
Gallery comment: "We preferred the 15 overall" "Order at least 4 if you ever find it. One for me you and him and a spare for me"
Glenfarclas 21 yo
Colour: Pale reddish gold
Nose: A bit floral but no family finish in the nose.
Body: Full bodied as expected with a Glenfarcli.
Palate: A bit musky with a bit of a spicy bite.
Finish: A long finish with a spicy warmth but milder than the 17 yo.
Gallery Comment: Sort of like the mustiness when being intimate.
(wasn't actually said like that but it's been cleaned up a bit)
Glenfarclas 25 yo
Colour: Pale gold with reddish hints
Nose: Tangerine, orangery
Body: Long legged with fishnet stockings and stilettos.
Palate: Prickly on the tongue caused me personally to drool in response, yummy.
Finish: Toffee, spicy, honey long mostly spicy finish.
Gallery comment: Mighty spicy.
Glenfarclas Cask 105
Colour: Deep reddish almost amber.
Nose: Barley with a lot of alcohol nose prickle
Body: A typical Glenfarcli, long and slow.
Palate: Sweet and spicy with barley, some salt (surprisingly) and a slight hint of nutmeg.
Finish: Short and spicy finish.
Gallery comment: "Not as full bodied and wonderful as memory held"
A short repast was had with honey wings (homemade), Imperial cheese, cheddar cheese , crackers, saltines, a meat tray, fresh breads, butter, a vegetable platter with onion dip. The glasses were charged for the next flight once I'd finished the luncheon and we rolled back into the second part of the evening.
"Banffshire Beauties" Second Flight - the Aberlour Stable:
Aberlour 10 yo
Colour: Medium gold
Nose; Floral scents
Palate: Honey and grain with a medicinal and floral taste.
Finish: Short but spicy and warming
Aberlour 12 yo
Colour: A bit deeper gold
Nose: Heather notes
Body: Medium body which slowly drizzles down the glass.
Palate : Sweet toffee with a nutty hint
Finish: Medium spicy finish.
Aberlour 16 yo
Colour: Golden with hints of red, a burnished gold.
Nose: Honey in the nose.
Body: Medium weight body, not a heavy hitter.
Palate: Sweet, redolent of honey and a bit malty
Finish: Lovely long warming finish.
"The dessert drams" We were each given a plate with chocolate fudge, nougat, pecan pie, dark dark chocolate and a small bar of dark chocolate to compare to the following drams.
Aberlour A'Bunadh Batch 23 (2008) 60.2% abv
Colour: Deep reddish gold
Nose: Heather, floral scents and nutty
Body: Lovely and heavy
Palate: Marzipan, honey butterscotch and toffee were all there
Finish: Warming and spicy
Gallery Comment: Not really terrific 'though, rather less than expected.
Musky comment: My personal least favorite of the A'Bunadh group. I saved a bit from the 6 and re tasted them to finalise my choices for top and bottom candidates.
Aberlour A'Bunadh Batch 18 (2006) 59.7% abv
Colour: Deep reddish gold
Nose: Honey toffee and heather
Body: Heavy, very slow and heavy
Palate: Toffee in the finish, smoother than the batch 23.
Finish: Warming and spicy finish with strong honeyed notes.
Musky comment: Near the bottom of my preferences to sample again.
Aberlour A'Bunadh Batch 15 (2005) 59.6 % abv
Colour: Reddish gold
Nose: sweet toffeeness with honeyed notes almost like pecan pie. (Which we each had a slice of to compare with the drams.
Body: Flowing and drizzly
Palate: Sweet and spicy with honeyed notes
Finish: Medium long and spicy finish, alcohol prickle as well.
Musky comment: Middle of the pack I preferred the batch 7 over this one. A special thanks to J.H. for making this one available as I'd missed it when it was at the local LCBO a number of years ago.
Aberlour A'Bunadh Batch 14 (2005) 59.5% abv
Colour: Yep, reddish gold
Nose: Toffee just like the sample, yummy
Body: Heavy body, flows like lava
Palate: Sweet and honeyish with a mild spiciness. Winnie the Pooh would approve.
Finish: A medium weight spicy finish. Not long enough by far.
Musky comment: My number two favorite.
Aberlour A'Bunadh Batch 13 (2004) 59.8 % abv
Colour: a deep reddish gold slightly darker than the batch 14
Nose: Heavy with toffee and honeyed notes and nougat.
Body: Heavy and rich like the rest.
Palate: Fudge and pecan notes with a honeyed sweetness
Finish: Honey and sweet with fudge, pecan pie and dark chocolate notes all rolled into the experience. Wonderful, wonderful.
Musky comment: My top pick for the A'Bunadh stable tasted tonight... and I own it!
Aberlour A'Bunadh Batch 7 (2000) 59.9 % abv
Colour: a very deep reddish gold, the deepest of the lot.
Nose: Heather and honey notes.
Body: Definitively full bodied
Palate: Rich and filling with a long warming toffee flavour to enjoy.
Finish: A shorter finish that is redolent of honey sweetishness, a nice warming finish although I prefer the batch 13 better marginally.
Musky comment: My third favorite of the A'Bunadh's. A very big thanks to G.P. for being able to hold onto this particular sample for so very long.
Group comment: Whisky, unlike women, at least has an end. (I couldn't believe he said this so had to put it in!)
...and that was our evening of fine whisky and good friends. A driver had been laid on after the end of the festivities so we were all able to either get home safely or avail ourselves of the hosts' generous offer to spend the evening. I returned this morning and it appears the party continued on, with a round of darts and several more drams having been enjoyed in our absence.
I cannot stress enough that when planning and holding any sort of function, that overnighting arrangements or a designated driver be set up in advance to ensure everyone is able to get home safely.