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The smell of Peat

Your tastes and our tastes are discussed here, so make sure you share your pleasures with us.

Re: The smell of Peat

Postby Reggaeblues » Thu May 22, 2008 10:24 am

P.S.

Johnny G; C57: Glad you like my custard tasting notes.

D'you reckon I've stumbled on a new career here?? After all, I have a good 50 years experience in custard tasting...
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby UUNetBill » Thu May 22, 2008 3:53 pm

Reggaeblues wrote: Ahh! Greetings and Welcome to the man from Pikes Peak! Tho' i am from jolly old England(I believe the Brits invented custard, and probably peat too...) many a hero of mine has ascended Pike's Peak at great speed...usually with the surname "Unser" or "Andretti..."

I had the good fortune to shake Mario's hand at a book signing a few years ago. Charming bloke, and a true legend. Along with my dear friend Stirling Moss, regarded as the greatest all-rounder in the world of motor sport.

He once took a Superbike around Laguna Seca raceway, having never ridden one before, and posted a time quick enough to have placed him 16th on the grid for the previous year's championship round!

Regarding "the smell of peat" emanating from your "Compass Box box", maybe they dip the box/bottle in the whisky first to lure you into buying it?!?(subliminal selling!!)

Hopefully the contents live up to it! I only ever had one(free) sample of the Monster. I enjoyed it. But not enough to make me choose it over a bottle of Ardbeg 10 when next I went buying. A vatting of Ardbeg(or Caol Ila??) and Ardmore, I believe, and I certainly wouldn't say no to another sample...

How do you find it?


Stirling Moss - a true legend as well! Amazing career, amazing man. I had the honor of meeting Al Unser Sr. at a race several years back, I found him to be a real down-to-earth, very approachable person. We chatted for a good 5-10 minutes (I had watched him race at Indianapolis many times in the 70s and 80s) and I never once got the feeling that he was waiting for me to move on. A true gentleman.

As to the Compass Box, it is Ardmore and Caol Ila and/or Ardbeg, and it's lighter than the straight Islay malts, so it's a good intro for people who aren't huge peat fans. I think the name 'Peat Monster' is a bit of a misnomer, as it's not all that monstrous, but it's a decent enough dram, IMHO.

:thumbsup:
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby Reggaeblues » Thu May 22, 2008 5:54 pm

Yes...I believe jim Murray, our whisky 'guru' and author, desribes it as "This ain't no monster...it's pure pussy!"

now what d'you think he meant by that??

Re: Al Unser Sr. Isn't it great when you discover the human being behind the legend?
Nice to know Junior is back on the rails...

Forgive the repetition, for the benefit of UUNetBill...but a whisky tale coming up(peatless I'm afraid!)

Stirling Moss once invited me to help myself to a drink. As my hand hovered between the Cragganmore and the Laphroaig(well, THERE"S a bit of peat!) I noticed an unopened bottle beside them: "The Jim Clark Festival Malt," with a picture of my boyhood hero on the label! I picked it up for a closer look. "Open it,old boy!" said my host, an offer I could hardly refuse...though if I knew then what I know now, I'd have hesitated!

Many years later, I asked Lady Moss if i could photograph the bottle for a project i'm working on(I'm a musician but also an amateur photographer, and SM has been a huge support...) I told her that the man in the whisky shop was horrified when I told him the story. "You didn't open it did you?" he asked with baited breath...knowing it must be worth a few bucks unopened!

Anyway, she said: "If you don't tell Stirling , I won't!" and gave me the bottle!

He can't stand whisky, but it's typical of him that he has a couple of classics in his cabinet...
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby mikeymad » Thu May 22, 2008 7:15 pm

JohnyyGuitar wrote:Hey if you like that stuff why don't you just go buy some of that appricot, blackberry, or whatever else flavored brandys they sell.


I want my Brandy to taste like Brandy.

Cheers,
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby JohnyyGuitar » Fri May 23, 2008 11:22 pm

Raggieblues wrote:
D'you reckon I've stumbled on a new career here?? After all, I have a good 50 years experience in custard tasting...


Hey people have made careers out of lesser things - "scotch reviewer" to name just one.


mikemade Wrote:
JohnyyGuitar wrote:
Hey if you like that stuff why don't you just go buy some of that appricot, blackberry, or whatever else flavored brandys they sell.

I want my Brandy to taste like Brandy.


Now that is funny - see you guys have a sense of humor after all :lol: It just needs a little nuturing and proding by some smuck like me :lol:

Now then peat doesn't have a taste, a smell yes, but not a taste. What you are tasting in the whiskey are the free radical negative protons that are released in the process those protons are then attracted to and cling to the appricot neutrons thus reaching an atomic equalibrium in the whiskey. The end results is a sensation on the tongue the illicts a false response thus tricking the brain into thinking one is tasting peat - but it is really all inside you head. This also explains why some you taste appricots (do appricots even grow in scotland?)...That coupled with the mind altering effect of the alchol and you have a perfect reciept for tasting almost anything, personally if you aren't tasting a little bit of heaven in each glass your mind is probably in a fruit bucket somewhere.
Here try this if you find your particular brand of scotch to be slightly lacking in the peat department - sit in a soft comfortable living room chair with you dram (I like that word now), a pack of matches and a sharp knife, slice a hole and pull out a small bit of stuffing from the chair, light and dampen, then hold the smoldering ember under your dram, allowing the smoke drift up into your waiting nostrils as you gently sip - works everytime. To further enhance the experince dip a bit of stuffing into your favorite type of flavoring, cherry, appricot, custard, shoe polish, stick out your tongue and lightly pat with the freshly coated stuffing. The possibilities are endless, why rely on the distillery to put or not put in the flavor you want when you can really do it all yourself. If like a little more carmel give it a little more carmel - it's all about you.
I know, I know, I'm a genius and why didn't you think of it - sad to say we are all not blessed with my level of wisdom but we live our meager lives to live out such as they are...If I can assist you further in your worthless journey thru life and fruitless endeavors, please don't hesitate to ask, after all it is a very special gift I was given at birth and one I feel an obligation to our maker above to share, with those less fortunate. It is my burden in life, but if I can leave this world a better place than I found it, then my life has not been for nought. And I do feel that I am accomplishing that task here.
A light, a beacon in the night for the lost and misguided scotch commonsewers amoungst you.
But don't thank me, thank the world that brought me forth, for if not but humble, I am nothing at all. And to my flock - thank you once again.
Last edited by JohnyyGuitar on Fri May 23, 2008 11:59 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby les taylor » Fri May 23, 2008 11:36 pm

JohnyyGuitar wrote:
some smuck like me :lol:



:sleep:
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby Gov » Sat May 24, 2008 1:01 am

JG,

You are hilarious!! You must really spend a lot of time thinking up this absolute rubbish you post here.
:headbang:
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby oldrip57 » Sat May 24, 2008 5:33 am

JohnyyGuitar wrote:...Now then peat doesn't have a taste, a smell yes, but not a taste. What you are tasting in the whiskey are the free radical negative protons that are released in the process those protons are then attracted to and cling to the appricot neutrons thus reaching an atomic equalibrium in the whiskey. The end results is a sensation on the tongue the illicts a false response thus tricking the brain into thinking one is tasting peat - but it is really all inside you head...


Well, yes, but then, I exist primarily (at least, in my own experience) 'inside my head', too. So, that taste impression and I are co-existing in the same (real or unreal, but same) place, no?
More seriously, I think all of us realize, when we read/write/review a tasting note that what we value are impressions, not actual sensations. We all KNOW that there are no apricots, butterscotch, spice and/or 'peat' in the whisk(e)y itself. But, we ask, of what does it remind us? THAT is what we describe.
Methinks either you take taste descriptions too seriously, or we you.
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby lohssanami » Sat May 24, 2008 10:16 am

I think JG wants us to take him too seriously so that he can point out how his dry or tongue in cheek humor shouldn't be taken so seriously.

I think he smiles more than anyone else here, including myself, when he is typing up his posts. It's probably the reason why he misspells things...he is laughing and smiling so much, just thinking of how people will react, that he doesn't see everything he writes.

Just my thoughts...
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby Reggaeblues » Sat May 24, 2008 11:46 am

Mine too...

I hear whisskee is god for dyslaxia. specaily the petty ones from Ilsya
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby JohnyyGuitar » Sun May 25, 2008 9:16 pm

We all KNOW that there are no apricots, butterscotch, spice and/or 'peat' in the whisk(e)y itself. But, we ask, of what does it remind us? THAT is what we describe.
Methinks either you take taste descriptions too seriously, or we you.oldrip57


How do you know there are no apricots in whiskey ? Were you there when they made it ? Beside if they are using used burbon, sherry, port, etc. casks, who's to say what they did and left elements of in those barrels. And by the way - there really is peat in whiskey.
What's in your head and what's in the whiskey - Correct me if I'm wrong (hardly ever) but they make scotch from just a few things, water and barley, and what ever peat smoke creeps into the process, along with flavor from the barrel, and the effect from the immediate environment, like salt ocean air, yes yes yes - the water used is unique to it terroir as such imparts its stamp on the final out come.
Put all that aside for a moment and let me ask a question.....
When did all this........"I taste a million flavors in my scotch" start ? And why is it that people have to pretending when they talk about or describe their whiskey tasting experience it's as if rockets are going off and they are having multiple orgasims on every sip ? Personlly I attribute that to the 'over the top' world we live into today, the over sensationalizing of everything. Whiskey tasting in a way today is akin to the guy (dead now) who use to mess around with the dangerous animals and stick his face in the camera and scream about how excited he was, him and a whole host of other over the top celeb-bimbos. So I guess we have to do the 'over the top' routine on scotch to, ie. turn it into something it's not. Like scotch, wine tasting has turned into something it never was - in short a bunch of crap - and now wine and wine making is sucking up to the mass market in it is endevoring to create all these fruit bomb in your face wines that don't even taste like wine anymore - but very expensive fruit juice that appeals to the masses and the likes of Robert Parkless, the same thing is happening to scotch - with some new over the top flavor packed bombs coming out on a daily basis to capture the novice with in your face flavors...so that they can pontificate about all the appricots and candy pink panty flavors they find in it, to justify the outragous price.

And by way, that's right I did, in my last post call myself a 'smuck' - it wasn't a mistake, you'd be right to take that as I was making fun of you, myself and everything else. As I find this whole whiskey 'tasting' game rather silly....It's just whiskey and I really like it, I like it so much that I have no need or reason to turn it into or have to pretend it is anything else than what it is - whiskey.
My advice and bottom line - Stop fooling yourself, there aren't all those flavors in that little dram - what you are tasting is scotch pure and simple.
If you want appricots go eat appricots, I don't need to spend $100 to get the taste of appricots.
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby oldrip57 » Mon May 26, 2008 3:13 am

oldrip57 wrote:...Methinks either you take taste descriptions too seriously, or we you...


JohnyyGuitar wrote:How do you know there are no apricots in whiskey ? Were you there when they made it ? Beside if they are using used burbon, sherry, port, etc. casks, who's to say what they did and left elements of in those barrels. And by the way - there really is peat in whiskey.
What's in your head and what's in the whiskey - Correct me if I'm wrong (hardly ever) but they make scotch from just a few things, water and barley, and what ever peat smoke creeps into the process, along with flavor from the barrel, and the effect from the immediate environment, like salt ocean air, yes yes yes - the water used is unique to it terroir as such imparts its stamp on the final out come.
Put all that aside for a moment and let me ask a question.....
When did all this........"I taste a million flavors in my scotch" start ? And why is it that people have to pretending when they talk about or describe their whiskey tasting experience it's as if rockets are going off and they are having multiple orgasims on every sip ? Personlly I attribute that to the 'over the top' world we live into today, the over sensationalizing of everything. Whiskey tasting in a way today is akin to the guy (dead now) who use to mess around with the dangerous animals and stick his face in the camera and scream about how excited he was, him and a whole host of other over the top celeb-bimbos. So I guess we have to do the 'over the top' routine on scotch to, ie. turn it into something it's not. Like scotch, wine tasting has turned into something it never was - in short a bunch of crap - and now wine and wine making is sucking up to the mass market in it is endevoring to create all these fruit bomb in your face wines that don't even taste like wine anymore - but very expensive fruit juice that appeals to the masses and the likes of Robert Parkless, the same thing is happening to scotch - with some new over the top flavor packed bombs coming out on a daily basis to capture the novice with in your face flavors...so that they can pontificate about all the appricots and candy pink panty flavors they find in it, to justify the outragous price.

And by way, that's right I did, in my last post call myself a 'smuck' - it wasn't a mistake, you'd be right to take that as I was making fun of you, myself and everything else. As I find this whole whiskey 'tasting' game rather silly....It's just whiskey and I really like it, I like it so much that I have no need or reason to turn it into or have to pretend it is anything else than what it is - whiskey.
My advice and bottom line - Stop fooling yourself, there aren't all those flavors in that little dram - what you are tasting is scotch pure and simple.
If you want appricots go eat appricots
, I don't need to spend $100 to get the taste of appricots.


Thank you for settling THAT!
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby Reggaeblues » Mon May 26, 2008 11:37 am

Johnny Gangster Of Love wrote: "My advice and bottom line - Stop fooling yourself, there aren't all those flavors in that little dram - what you are tasting is scotch pure and simple.
If you want appricots go eat appricots, I don't need to spend $100 to get the taste of appricots."

There must be something wrong with me, then. Whisky tastes like whiskey(or vice versa)??? No way! For a start, last night the whisky that came out of one bottle(Woodford Reserve - a present, and my first bourbon. Much enjoyed!)tasted very different from the one that came out of another bottle. Which was the last dram of a Talisker 18. That being so, I took my time with it. Well, try as I might, I could not help "fooling myself." I kept telling myself "There aren't all those flavours in that little dram." Meantime, the whisky was tasting less and less like whiskey(or at least the one I'd just had)and more and more like a host of other things.

It was obviously my imagination, but I thoroughly enjoyed the initial rich sweetness, followed by what I can only describe as "nifty smoke," which sat gently but firmly on the palate, and lingered while a host of imagined flavours tickled my palate.Well I thought I must have been hallucinating, or maybe it was the culmination of all those reggae cigarettes i've smoked for too long, but dammit, following a smattering of red currant and cherry sweets behind that wonderful veil of smoke, I tasted...coffee!! well I KNOW I didn't mix any coffee with my Talisker. I'd have to be very ill for that, in which case I'd probably use a cheap blend like JWR if I had any.

But there it was! Coffee!! And then I took another sip, and another...and dammit, the whole cavalcade began again, marching across my toungue every time...

Either Talisker 18 is a fabulous whisky, with a nose that "smells of peat(gently)" mixed with warm sponge cake. mellow oak and white chocolate, or I am COMPLETELY mad and somebody should call the men in white coats and lock me, nay, all of us, up!

Except Johnny of course.

Oh, and by the way my friend, I once ordered a Bushmills 10 SM on a gig. It tasted terrible! sickly sweet with no finish. Worse than southeren Comfort. I examined the bottle and discovered the problem. it had one of those spouts in it and the air had been at it for however long. The whisky had deteriorated, and also gone cloudy and murky. THAT had tadpoles and all manner of pond life in it.

I saw them, I swear...
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby Reggaeblues » Mon May 26, 2008 11:45 am

I got it!

Johnny is right. Of COURSE there are no appricotts, tadpoles, coffee grinds, chocolate swiss roll, camel dung, hashish, bananas, bandanas(sweaty ones as worn by willie Nelson) lemons or spent matches etc. in whisky..

It is merely that our favourite liquid merely EVOKES these things...just like a sunset often evokes memories, say, of a favourite girl or whatever.

Oh, I forgot, JG doesn't "do" girls unless they've had mouths taped shut...oops!!
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby Wave » Mon May 26, 2008 12:04 pm

Reggaeblues wrote:I got it!

Johnny is right. Of COURSE there are no ..........., ........, ...... ...., ........., ..... ...., ..... ...., hashish, ....., ..... etc. in whisky..


No but we wish there was! :mrgreen:
It would at least explain the price jump we've seen lately. :wink:


Cheers!
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby Reggaeblues » Mon May 26, 2008 1:39 pm

You should have tried the 36 YO "Rasta Malt" from the SMWS gifted me by a friend. So named because one reviewer found marijuana on the nose, and another hashish...

The drug squad have since raided the Longmorn distillery and confiscated all barrels over thirty years old...

...not!!
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby JohnyyGuitar » Mon May 26, 2008 7:09 pm

Either Talisker 18 is a fabulous whisky, with a nose that "smells of peat(gently)" mixed with warm sponge cake. mellow oak and white chocolate, or I am COMPLETELY mad and somebody should call the men in white coats and lock me, nay, all of us, up!


Call the men in the white coats - there is no sponge cake in Talisker.
You should just buy some sponge cake and pretend its Talisker if you think they are similar in taste. I'll bet you could even find some hints of appricots in the sponge cake, if not just throw some on top, might as well pour some talisker on to while your at it.
I think you guys would be lot happier drinking flavored liquors, peach brandy, kaluha, etc...
When I lift a glass of scotch up the last thing in the world I want to taste or smell, is fruits, cakes or any other feminine aromas. Yea I'm sure you'd guys would be a lot happier eating cup cakes and sipping amareto.
Come to think of it, why are you drinking scotch - you certainly don't want it to taste like scotch when you are constantly trying to find other flavors in it.
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby Reggaeblues » Mon May 26, 2008 7:39 pm

"Reggaeblues, you prefer a lot of ethyl heptanoate in your whisky." saith C_I.


Ahh, that explains everything!

Anyway, it's about that time of day. Think I'll go indulge in some liquid organoleptic research...
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby Reggaeblues » Mon May 26, 2008 7:50 pm

"Come to think of it, why are you drinking scotch - you certainly don't want it to taste like scotch when you are constantly trying to find other flavors in it." JG

See the above post - I suffer from organolepsy and whisky is the BEST medicine!

It has a really wierd side effect though. Everytime I sniff or taste my medicine, it evokes memories of flavours long forgotten and combinations yet to be discovered. I'm not TRYING to find other flavours in it guv, they're just...there!!! I tasted something called Ardbeg once. Came in a funny green bottle with Viking writing on it. I swear it smelt of Arbroath smokies in custard. Now, if you'd asked me to eat such a combination I'd have thought you were bonkers, but as a potential cure for organolepsy, it proved quite stunning. trouble is I am now addicted to the medicine and have no desire to be cured...

funny thing is, i keep getting messages from this geezer in America who tells me I'm imagining it all.
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby JohnyyGuitar » Tue May 27, 2008 7:23 am

funny thing is, i keep getting messages from this geezer in America who tells me I'm imagining it all.


That's because you are - unless you can pull an apricot out of the bottle, or get the distillery to admit putting them in there, than it's your overly stimulated imagination.

You can make the case for a lot of things tasting like other things - If you like to play that tasting game - try roasted peanuts - you'll find a whole array of different flavors in them.
I just drank some very very expensive wine the other night, and I didn't distract my mind from the beauty of it's flavor by trying to imagine what else it tasted like, other than the wine that it was.
It's just me, and you can do whatever pleases your little pea pickin' heart, but I prefer to taste things for what they are not for what I imagine them to be. You might try it, but I found that my awareness to taste improved 10 fold when I stopped trying to identify imaginary flavors and just let the liquid itself be the flavor whether I could be a specific name to the flavor or not. It's like remembering someone by remembering their face - Not trying to imagine who or whom else they look like. Simply remember their personal unique face, without even the need to remember their eye color or hair, etc, just simple remember their face, in the same way remeber your various scotch by it's own unique personal taste. And like people enjoy them for that - without over analysis or scrutiny.
That's just me, you do what you want - silly, naive and/or pretenious as it may be.
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby irishwhiskeychaser » Tue May 27, 2008 1:47 pm

Anyway away from the schoolyard antics....

There are certian ways I describe peated or peat smoked whiskies

.... and there is more to peat than meets the eye when it comes to flavour.

Firstly peat does not smell of smoke but closer to dirt or earth what ever you want to call it. Easiest way to be sure is to go down to the garden center a buy some compost peat (same stuff). You can smell the actual peat from some whiskies. Where as others the over riding smell is smoke. And of course you get a mix of both too.

Then there is peat than contains heather which can impart the heather aroma (funnily enough) so what is in te peat can also have an effect.

The lower you go in the cut of peat the more pure (biodegraded) it will be so it will burn with less smoke and impart more of an ashy taste.

So Peat can have certain characteristics depending where it is from or even what layer is used for the kiln.

I am not an expert on these nuances but I do know that they are there. And being from Ireland we have used this as a fuel for centuries and still are using it.
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby Muskrat Portage » Tue May 27, 2008 2:16 pm

Like IWC, I enjoy the flavour of Peat in my whisky, however it arrives there. I agree that it imparts a more earthy nuance to the whiskies I enjoy. Some exude actual smokiness which I can confirm as Mrs Musky leaves the room when I pour one of them, she actually starts to have an allergic reation to the smell!

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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby Reggaeblues » Tue May 27, 2008 7:32 pm

"Some exude actual smokiness which I can confirm as Mrs Musky leaves the room when I pour one of them, she actually starts to have an allergic reaction to the smell!" MP>>>

No, no ,no! She's just IMAGINING the smell MP!Just like my mother, when I opened a bottle of Ardbeg at the dinner table was imaginning that she could smell, from across the table, "something one might use to clean the toilet!"

the whole point, for me, is this. Before I got into whisky, whisky smelt of "whisky." when I dared to taste it, it tasted of whisky...hot, spirity, rather bitter, and only to be tolerated if I became pleasantly inebriated. When I was at boarding school at the age of 8-13, the headmaster's breath always smelt of whisky as he ushered me into the study for a beating...

But when someone gave me a bottle of Lagavulin 16 10 years ago, an aroma rose from the bottle when I opened it that was NOT whisky!! quite unlike anything I could previously have called whisky...

So fascinated was I by this unearthly, yet earthy aroma, I could not help but find myself trying to describe it, if only to myself. It was a natural response. I had read no whisky books. Had no idea about whisky "regions" or tasting wheels etc...I didn't even know about peat in whisky. But i said to myself "If a 16th century bible could be distilled, this is what it would smell like!"

So there! another suggestion for "the smell of peat!"

From then on, I was hooked, and the great taste adventure began!

You know, I do appreciate where Johnny's coming from in terms of NOT over-analysing(Anal -ising!!) and ditto perconceptions.

But what I love about whisky is being constantly surprised...and to me, it's only natural to want to "liken" the sensations of taste and smell to a reference point, be it an "appricott" or an old bible! We do it all the time. "Look at that cloud! It looks like a polar bear...that one looks like a shark, etc."

And then again, sometimes my mind is free enough not to want to liken anything to anything, but just experience it for what it is.

Whatever, and however, the ultimate purpose is...enjoyment!
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Re: WHISK(E)Y NEWS !!!!

Postby I_SPEY » Tue May 27, 2008 8:24 pm

There's a new whisky! It's a Non Single Malt, Non Am. Scotch,Non Alc., Never Distilled Edition, 0,5 Proof, dist. 10 August 2007, bottled 3 rd of May 2008, so appr. 9 Months Old, 5cl,Non Official Bottling, Never Heard and Seen WHISKEY and it's called JG NSM NAS NA NDE 0,5 P - 9 MO, NOB, NHS.




PS1. There are no apricots or peaches in, but it's still very PRETENTIOUS :smoke:


PS2. The Distillery is unknown, they say jwr

8)
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby Gov » Tue May 27, 2008 9:06 pm

Reggaeblues wrote:Before I got into whisky, whisky smelt of "whisky." when I dared to taste it, it tasted of whisky...hot, spirity, rather bitter, and only to be tolerated if I became pleasantly inebriated.


That statement is so very right on! I always thought, how in the hell can someone drink this crap! I stuck with beer (imported kinds) for many many years. Then I developed a taste for wine. Now finally whisk(e)y. Whisk(e)y has become my first love now. When I drink all three, I can detect a lot of different tastes and I don't go looking for it, it just stands out.
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby Reggaeblues » Tue May 27, 2008 9:34 pm

Thanks, Gov!

I-Spey, In your "formula" for the "new" whisky, does "JG" stand for Johnny Guitar by any chance?!?

You know, I totally agree with JG here:

"...just remember their face, in the same way remeber your various scotch by it's own unique personal taste. And like people enjoy them for that - without over analysis or scrutiny."

At the same time, the "scrutiny" can be breathtaking! How amazing to be experiencing the effects of a substance in one's mouth that CAN evoke memories, most prominently of flavours, but in my case also places! My painter friend tasted "colours" at her first whisky tasting!

This to me is the wonder of whisky - the most evocative drink in the world!
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby I_SPEY » Wed May 28, 2008 8:17 am

Reggaeblues wrote:Thanks, Gov!

I-Spey, In your "formula" for the "new" whisky, does "JG" stand for Johnny Guitar by any chance?!?

You know, I totally agree with JG here:

"...just remember their face, in the same way remeber your various scotch by it's own unique personal taste. And like people enjoy them for that - without over analysis or scrutiny."

At the same time, the "scrutiny" can be breathtaking! How amazing to be experiencing the effects of a substance in one's mouth that CAN evoke memories, most prominently of flavours, but in my case also places! My painter friend tasted "colours" at her first whisky tasting!

This to me is the wonder of whisky - the most evocative drink in the world!

Yes, RB, JG stands for JohnnyQuitar :lol:
And btw, I agree too with that peace of Qoyote (sorry for the linguistic)

:smoke:
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby Reggaeblues » Wed May 28, 2008 12:19 pm

Looked again at the original post:

"My first post and I'm completely new to the world of whisk(e)y tasting - I'm an expert at getting hammered though.

What exactly does Peat smell like? Please don't say it smells like Peat. I bought a bottle of Connemara and I liked it, but I've been told by "guests" of my abode that they don't like peated whisky. I smelled and tasted it again. I didn't smell or taste anything that stood out from my other whiskeys."

...Unlike what I decribe in my "Lagavulin inititiation!" a few posts back.

I think the answer is, and I think this will also please JG:

"Just go stick your nose in a beaker of Laphroaig, or Lagavulin 16. Don't eeven THINK about it...just BREATHE...and enjoy!!"
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby I_SPEY » Wed May 28, 2008 12:33 pm

Reggaeblues wrote:Looked again at the original post:

"My first post and I'm completely new to the world of whisk(e)y tasting - I'm an expert at getting hammered though.

What exactly does Peat smell like? Please don't say it smells like Peat. I bought a bottle of Connemara and I liked it, but I've been told by "guests" of my abode that they don't like peated whisky. I smelled and tasted it again. I didn't smell or taste anything that stood out from my other whiskeys."

...Unlike what I decribe in my "Lagavulin inititiation!" a few posts back.

I think the answer is, and I think this will also please JG:

"Just go stick your nose in a beaker of Laphroaig, or Lagavulin 16. Don't eeven THINK about it...just BREATHE...and enjoy!!"


You put that very good, RB :thumbsup:
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby Gov » Thu May 29, 2008 1:39 am

Reggaeblues wrote:"Just go stick your nose in a beaker of Laphroaig, or Lagavulin 16. Don't eeven THINK about it...just BREATHE...and enjoy!!"


Sometimes I catch myself walking by the liquor cabinet and do just that! :mrgreen:
I love it!!! :smoke:
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby JohnyyGuitar » Thu May 29, 2008 6:17 pm

And the debate rages on....in the red corner, JG - fighting for common sense and reality - in the blue corner whisky-snob fighting for irrational justification for high prices and pretentiousness. Just a little joke ha ha ha :P

Serioulsy though, I am trying to make a simple straight foward point, when you sit down to eat your dinner, do you imagine everything else that it tastes like ? If scotch was 1/10 the price, would you be scrutinizing it so ?

That old expression just keeps ringing back in my head "Making a mountain out of a mole hill"

I've seen this phenomena over and over in my life, something becomes chic' (did I spell the right?), everyone jumps onboard and starts trying to prove how they know more about it then the next guy, latching on to all the popular terms, jargon, trying to imitate and talk like the experts in the magazines, the novices pouring in wanting to be like the rest, the manufactures loving it and promoting it and laughing all the way to the bank. Meanwhile the real people, having been into the activity before it went foo-foo are sitting back and laughing, shy of regretting the new found popularity in their activity and the price increases and the modifications the activity is taking on to suit and market it to the masses.....Yes scotch whiskey, is going down the same old predictable path. And you guys are so predictable in your behavior.

It's just whiskey and it just tastes like whiskey, and if that ain't good enough perhaps you should just find something else to do or drink...simple as that.

Once again - just my oppinion - I'm not telling anyone what to do - it's your simple life to live out such as it is and go thru pretending things are what they are not - hey if it makes you happy go for it. Go eat rocks and pretend they taste like potatoes. Go listen to Janis Joplin and pretend it's music, go smell dung and pretend it's perfume and go drink scotch and pretend its appricots. If that's what it takes to get you thru the day - bless you and enjoy yourself. I just feel blessed that I don't have to resort to such behavior.

Cheers guys :lol:
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby Deactivated Member » Thu May 29, 2008 6:22 pm

"What good can drinkin' do, what good can drinkin' do?
Lord, I drink all night but the next day I still feel blue"

(c) J Joplin
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby IainB » Thu May 29, 2008 6:40 pm

Whiskey tastes like whiskey. That is certainly true.

Also meat tastes like meat. That, of course, doesn't mean BBQ Fillet steak tastes like Roast Chicken.

There has to be some middle ground here. I don't go in for all sort of fancy descriptions in whiskey but I think it's very much an over simplification to say whiskey just tastes like whiskey. If that was the case why would anyone buy more than one brand.

No you don't always have to sit back and spend hours contemplating a particular dram. I'm quite happy to spend a few hours down the pub drinking pints and downing Powers - a NAS blend and one of my favourite whiskeys.

HOWEVER, if that was all I drank it would get very boring on this forum after a few hundred post just about how wonderful I think Powers is.

Yes there's some pretentiousness in descriptions. WHO CARES! What I do know is that I really really enjoy the odd night where I have time to try, with a bit of peace and quite, a few different whiskies, be it Scotch, Irish, or whatever. I also know that sometimes I taste one that blows me away. Say Redbreast 15. An absolute favourite of mine. I wouldn't be able to describe why but I know for a fact I prefer this to, say , Jameson NAS. It not my imagination. Yes they both taste like whiskey.

And occasionally I will hear a smell described as something which makes sense, e.g. Tyrconnell smelling like pear drops. Which it does. That does not imply that either product contains pears. Neither do. It's just a smell. Doesn't mean the whiskey tastes any better or worse. It's just interesting.

And by the way, even a single whiskey can taste differently depending on what you drink it with. I think a Powers tastes much sweeter after a pint of stout. Generations of non-pretentios Irish men have done the same.

My overriding point, however, is WHO CARES. If people want to sit and spend hours discussing the flavour in a whiskey why shouldn't they:

1- They are not harming anyone
2 -They are enjoying it.
3 -I've yet to encounter anyone who feels inferior because they can't smell the same thing as Jim Murray.
4 -THEY ARE ENJOYING IT!

Whether you think it's pretentious or not is irrelevant. They now know you think it's pretentious. That's not going to stop them - why? - THEY ARE ENJOYING IT!

Why try to change someone's idea of fun just because it doesn't fit your own. Each to their own. Certainly, when I was in my twenties the sorts of night out I have now would seem very boring. Do I care? Nope. That's just what I do now.

There we are. That's my tuppence worth.
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby irishwhiskeychaser » Fri May 30, 2008 1:27 pm

Jaysus Iain, I can't believe I read all your post..... War & Peace man (I thought half of it would be waffle :wink: :lol: :P ) you know I jest ...

Well all I can say ditto ... spot on dude :thumbsup:

However I do enjoy JG's arguments and he has a point at times but over exuberant (cic) maybe so I'll look forward to the reply and see how we fare .... Could this be the debate of all debates :wink:
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Re: The smell of Peat

Postby Muskrat Portage » Fri May 30, 2008 3:01 pm

There is no debate about the flavours some people detect and other people cannot due to gradiations of personal anosmia. Certain chemicals when combined create flavours and odours that really aren't there, at the molecular level. Read Pip Hillis' book on Appreciating Whisky to see a scholarly explanation.

Granted some of the tasting notes appear outlandish or stretching the point at first, until you realise that the person is grasping for an explanation based on their own taste memories. The production process of different whiskies wil create variants on the original product. Length of time in the mash tun; size, dimensions, heat source, reflux in the stills; cut; wood type used for aging, length of time aging; previous useage of casks; all combine to result in an individual flavour profile for each whisky created.

There is a similar variance in the lowly olive. Each manufacturer (in for example Portugal) has a specific recipe they follow for their product. When you taste them this variance leaps out, in some cases. You find the olives dry or salty or more robust in flavour, depending on your personal taste preferences. Whisky is the same in that you will find certain chemical interplays will develop into a dram you really enjoy or perhaps are indifferent to.

Whether you choose to attempt to name what you taste based on your personal life experiences or just sit back and enjoy the dram for what it is, a fine product developed by the combined talents of the mashman, stillman and master distillers', the choice is yours. There is no wrong way to enjoy whisky (whiskey) and I would feel privileged if I could just sit with anyone who posits on this forum and enjoy a dram together.

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