onsdag 19 november 2014

Swedish Whisky from Smögen – Sherry Project 1:1 51,8% ABV

Yesterday I was very lucky to find a small package of samples in my mailbox! The package turned out to have two samples of Smögen single malt whisky in it, yay! Smögen is releasing two spankingly new bottlings tomorrow which swedes can buy at the state monopoly. One is single bourbon cask 20/2011 (which I will taste sometime soon), and the other is called ’Sherry Project 1:1’ being the first of four releases involving sherry finishing. The fourth bottling in the series will be fully matured in sherry casks. Smögen distillery is a swedish west-coast distillery that only produces peated whisky. And so I guess that you would like to know the ppm? Well people, it’s peated to 45 ppm (just as Laphroaig). Now, the Sherry Project 1:1 has first been matured for nearly three years in powerfully charred 110 litre casks made of european oak. The whisky has then been transferred for a final maturation in a fresh sherry butt. Sounds tasty right?! Well let’s try it then shall we?

Incredibly rich and creamy! Very fat and certainly gives a mature impression. I remember thinking that the first release ’Primör’ seemed very mature for it’s age, but this one really is many many steps ahead in maturity! A BIG and fat nose that really drizzles with sherry influence, if I had not known that it has only spent a few months in sherry casks I would never have guessed it was not fully sherry matured, I kid you not people, really! The nose boasts of dried figs and dark raisins, there’s even some milk chocolate in there… nice… Above all the layers of creamyness and sherryness is a very elegant acidulous touch that really screams: ”Try me! Try me!” So I guess I just have to try now J

Mmm…! Absolutely beatiful. As I said, veeery mature! I absolutely can not believe that this is a young whisky… Great mouthfeel, perfect combination of peat and big-fat-creamy-sherryness… Lots of dark fruits on the first sip, sugary-honey sweetness that takes perfect care of my mouth. Slowly developes into a quite spicy and dry feeling that clings on to my mouth and makes everything become so ”present” if you know what I mean, I really feel that I’m alive when I taste this whisky! After one minute or so everything gets quite dry and warm… the peat is beautiful… I really don’t think that water is needed here people, it’s not too strong at all, so think carefully before adding water.

Well folks, this is definitely the best Swedish whisky I’ve tasted so far, so I guess I simply have to reserve a cask at Smögen as soon as possible J Please stay tuned for my other tasting note of the Smögen single cask 20/2011 that I’ll look into very soon.

A BIG thanks to Pär for the oppurtunity to taste this, thank you! Friends, please follow SamuelWhisky on Facebook here, and on twitter here. P.S If you come to the Örebro Beer and Whiskyfestival this friday, please do come to the Edrington booth to say hi, I will be there and take care of Connemara and Laphroaig!

See you soon and Sláinte! 

onsdag 5 november 2014

’Big Peat – X-mas 2014’ 53,8% ABV

Before I start digging deep into the latest shipment of samples from Clydesdale that arrived a couple of days ago (Clydesdale is one of Swedens top importer and seller of whisky), I just have to say hello to a sample that was in the shipment that arrived in September. Among the samples was the ’Big Peat’-christmas-2014-edition. I should think that most of you have heard of the Big Peat, but if not it is produced by Douglas Laing & Co. Now owned by one of the Laing-brothers, namely Fred. From what I have heard (and please correct me if I’m wrong) Big Peat mainly contains of malt whisky from a couple or so distilleries on Islay, and a wee splash of Port Ellen. In other words, Big Peat is a blended malt! 

In Sweden it will be released on the 17th of november. Ok, let’s see what we have here ☺

Big peat indeed! A quiet ”smoky” peat and not just peatsmoke (if that makes any sense… probably not...) Anyways, we also have something very green and salt, if you can nose the salytness in salt. There are some touches of moulded cheese, and earthy dampness, that is something like earth cellar for foodstorage in ”the olden days” ;) Quiet spirity on the alcohol which makes it seem a bit young perhaps, some touches of distillate/raw-spirit. Let’s see if there is any Big peat on the palate!

Begins very sea-salty, also salt liquorice, but in combo with a salt vanilla/fudge. Then comes the peat which I would definitely say is quite gentle! At least for the first couple of seconds. I keep the whisky in my mouth for a while and the alcohol strength is not at all overpowering, which is interesting. After swallowing I don’t have to wait long at all for the real big peat to kick in, and it does so in a really nice way ☺ Shortly after swallowing everything gets very dry on my tongue and the inside of my lips. Here I get a touch of a bit youngish feeling and also the moulded cheese is there. The aftertaste is looong, primarily ”smoke” and it warms my chest. Something for the winter night perhaps?!

A big thank you to the nice people at Clydesdale that keep sending me samples! And a big thanks to all of you out there all around the globe, thank you for following and please stay in touch via Facebook where there is a page for this blog, and likewise a profile on twitter here! Sláinte!