Latest Scotch whisky reviews

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Black Bottle

Black Bottle offers a characterful blended scotch with good structure and strong flavours. A delight amongst insipid vanilla & lemon blends that let far to much youthful grain spirit shine. An easy equal to many a single malt and much more chewy and substantial than JW Black Label (for example). This has rapidly become my ‘go to’ Blended scotch. 83/100

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Tullibardine 500

My favourite of the tasting – I guess no surprises there! I guess like the whole range I felt this was a bit safe and unchallenging. I’d prefer a bit more strength or depth to some of the finishing flavours – but perhaps that’s just my palate and predilections. The whole range is quite polished and well put together, meaning accessibility and joy for newcomers. Thankfully Tullibardine have extended their signature and other ranges greatly since these were released in 2013 and I guess I should be exploring these more myself. 83/100

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Tullibardine 228

Revisiting the Tullibardine 228, albeit in it’s revised packaging I was slightly underwhelmed with this expression compared to my first experience. Perhaps it was due to following the sweetness of the 225? I didn’t feel this had quite as much of the red wine influence as tasted prior and my fear was whilst the overall quality of Tullibardine’s releases has been normalised and raised slightly it has dulled the extremes which made them fun and interesting. Maybe in a different line-up or pairing this one will shine differently? 79/100

Latest US whiskey reviews

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Westland Garryana 2020

Complex with plenty of wood influence but also fruity, spicy and chocolate notes abound. Lifted by presentation at 50% ABV this has much more depth and presence than the heritage collection. 86/100

Latest Irish whiskey reviews

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Writers Tears Seaweed IPA Cask

Another rather unique expression, definitely a cut above the standard Writers Tears expressions available. A touch overtly hoppy in places which I certainly enjoyed but really shines in the finish. 84/100

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Writers Tears Japanese Cask

Not as favoured as the sweeter Icewine cask, this had a slighty more savoury and dare I say Umami feel about it following the Mizunara oak finish. More elegant in presentation and worthwhile spending longer with this one, this is a sip and savour dram, especially when you consider the unusual and rare nature of its construction. 84/100

Latest World whisky reviews

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HighGlen 3 Years Old Batch 1

Quite delicate nose and palate on this expression, biscuity and lemon-infused with the addition of ginger and thyme in places. Quite dessert-like and syrupy. Surprised this doesn’t feel like it is only 3 years old this one is more mature than its years. 85/100

Latest other spirits reviews

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Domaine d’Aurensan 20 Ans

Woody but so drinkable, I hadn’t appreciated when sampling this that it wasn’t all 20 years old! Some soft floral notes but this is mostly wood and dried herbs and fruits with a generous nutty and chocolate component too, superb! 86/100

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Chateau de Lacquy VSOP

Quite neutral despite its obvious fruity nature the sweetness has been tempered by plenty of wood talking here and saying good things. I really enjoyed this one. 85/100

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Drouin Reserve Des Fiefs

Superb, creamy textured and vibrantly fruity this has something of a curd or yoghurty nature and the youth comes through as banana milkshake (estery and creamy). A great insight into Drouin’s base spirit nature. 84/100

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