Event Notice: Elijah Craig Tasting @ Mac McGee

Elijah Craig Tasting
with Jacob Sabel
Tuesday August, 19th @ 7.30 p.m.

On Tuesday August 19th at 7.30 p.m., MacMcgees in Decatur will conduct a Elijah Craig whiskey tasting hosted by Heaven Hills Jacob Sabel.

We will taste the Elijah Craig 12 year old, the Elijah Craig 18year old, (which is no longer in production.) We’ll then try the 20 year old, the 21 year old and finally, the Elijah Craig barrel Proof. Unfortunately, we have limited seating for this tasting. If interested, please reply to this macmcgees@gmail.com or give us a call at the pub. The phone number is 404 – 377-8055. The cost for the tasting will be $31. Slainte!

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Laphroaig Select

Laphroaig Select Islay Single Malt Scotch Whisky
40% ABV
What the Distillery Says:
Laphroaig®, the world’s #1 Islay Single Malt Scotch Whisky, proudly introduces its newest expression, Laphroaig® Select Scotch Whisky. This new, innovative expression brings the distinct styles of the Laphroaig portfolio together to create a new expression that stays true to the brand’s heritage with an added layer of complexity and depth brought about by marrying various maturation styles and different oaks.

The liquid is carefully selected by Laphroaig Master Distiller, John Campbell, from the finest casks representing the favorite styles of Laphroaig – Quarter Cask, PX Cask, Triple Wood and Ten-Year Old Casks – creating a subtle blending of peat, oak and sweetness. The true heart of the spirit is then drawn from a final maturation in new American Oak casks, rarely used in Scotch Whisky maturation. During the last six months of aging, Laphroaig Select rests in the highest, warmest reaches of the warehouse throughout the Scottish summer.

The inspiration behind Laphroaig Select Scotch Whisky, and the unique method of aging, comes from the history and family lineage of the Laphroaig brand. Ian Hunter, the last family member to own Laphroaig, was influential in experimenting with new ways of distilling and was one of the first to combine American bourbon casks with traditional European casks to create new flavors, which at the time had not been seen. Laphroaig Select takes inspiration from Ian, creating a new expression with both classic and new flavors.

“Laphroaig Select is a true original and, as always, we have stayed true to our roots, using the fantastic Laphroaig heritage as inspiration for this new innovation,” said John Campbell, Laphroaig Master Distiller. “Laphroaig Select delivers a liquid with a unique marriage of our trademark ‘peat reek’ and a gentle sweetness, which we hope will both surprise and delight you.”

At 80 proof, Laphroaig Select is best enjoyed neat or with a splash of water to release the earthy aroma of blue peat smoke, sweet nuttiness of barley and the heathery perfume of Islay’s streams. Laphroaig Select is available at fine retail locations in select markets nationwide with a suggested retail price of $55.00 per 750ml bottle. Laphroaig Select joins the Laphroaig portfolio of Scotch whiskies that includes Laphroaig 10-Year-Old, 10-Year-Old Cask Strength, Quarter Cask, 18-Year-Old, 25-Year-Old, QA Cask, Triple Wood and Cairdeas 2014 Amontillado Edition.

What Richard Says:
Nose: A little of the Laphroaig brine and smoke but it starts to get pushed aside by the sherry notes. They don’t seems to be playing well together but rather jockeying for position.
Palate: Very sweet. That’s the initial impression. It’s like an Islay with training wheels. It’s lighter and almost watery in viscosity compared to other Laphroaigs. Seriously, this reminds me of Cloraseptic throat spray.
Finish: Iodine, raisins, a little smoke, and more Cloraseptic.
Comments: I try this and I ask myself…”Are we losing something here?” Granted, taste is VERY subjective. I would never think that my opinions on any whiskey should be your opinions on whiskey. With that caveat out of the way I ask myself why is Laphroaig messing with a great thing? We start off with the classic 10 Year Old Laphroaig. The bourbon casks let the malt shine through. In it’s cask strength version I think it is one of the three best single malt scotches available at 10 years of age (Springbank and Talisker being the other two). So if you’re Laphroaig you say “let’s monkey around with near perfection.” So you dump that ex-bourbon barrel Laphroaig into Quarter Casks. Okay, so the Quarter Cask is pretty good…not as good as the 10 but good. It also helps with the surge in demand because the QC can come out quicker without the age statement. Fine, I understand the nature of business. Next you say “what if we take the QC and dump it into Oloroso sherry wood?” Okay, now you’ve added Triple Wood. To me it’s moving in the wrong direction and I find it lacking next to the 10 and the QC but sherry is big now so some other people may like it. Now, with Select, you take all that came before and throw in some PX wood too before dumping it into new american oak. Why? I have no idea. I love Laphroaig. I really do. But this bottle leaves me asking why? It’s like a remnants batch made of all the leftover stuff in the warehouse. Too may hands (read wood finish) in the pot. On top of that, Laphroaig is monster malt and does well with proof. 80 proof just isn’t’ cutting it.
Rating: Average

I would like to thank the folks at DBC PR & Social Media for sending over a bottle for review.

Longmorn 21 Year (K&L Wine)

Longmorn Single Malt Scotch Whiskey Vintage 1992, Bottled 2013
52.4% ABV
What the Bottler Says:
Oh Longmorn, you elusive lovely creature. Last year, we bottled a Longmorn from a fresh sherry butt that was arguably our most positively received whisky of 2012. All the whisky geeks went mad and snatched up every bottle moments after it arrived. This year we return with another Longmorn of a similar price and aged, but this time it’s coming from a second fill butt. It’s not the sweet up-front style of last year’s, but instead a powerful whisky filled with fresh vanilla, dark dense fruit, and aromas of toffee and spice. This is a fabulously complex whisky with a roundness that’s undeniably pleasurable. Again don’t expect a redux of last year’s cask, but a special whisky that stands tall on it’s own merit. All lovers of this splendid Speyside distillery, located just south of Elgin, should buy now before the price goes up. A very welcome addition to the Faultline family.

What Richard Says:
Nose: The age and second fill nature of the sherry barrel make for a surprisingly nuanced nose. Dark berries, stewed prunes and raisins, and treacle syrup drizzled over panna cotta.
Palate: Rich, mouth coating, and unctuous. There are layers flavors here running the gamut of herbal, floral, and fruity with a nice viscous non-cloying sweetness to round it all out. All this lays nicely over a rich malty backbone.
Finish: There’s very little wood given the age. What there is seems light like a damp toothpick. It’s a little dry and slightly tannic but very clean.
Comments: How much do I like thing bottle? Well, after trying it a friends house earlier this year I rearranged my travel plans to Napa and Sonoma in June so that I could swing by K&L in San Francisco to get a bottle. Yeah…that much. You don’t see much Longmorn around but when you do it’s usually pretty damn good.  This is in the top three Longmorn’s I’ve ever had.  There’s a half-joke that goes around the scotch industry that Longmorn is every distiller’s second favorite malt. Try it and you’ll see why.
Rating: Must Buy


Event Notice: Jack Daniels & Woodford Dinner


Hosted by Jack Daniel’s Whiskey Specialist Guy Leone
Sunday, August 24 at 6pm

Woodford Reserve® Manhattan
Rocky Patel Royal Robusto Cigar
Thick Cut Sizzling Bacon

Gentleman Jack®
Caesar Salad

Woodford Reserve® Double Oaked
NY Strip 16 oz.
Creamed Spinach & Hash Browns

Jack Daniel’s® Tennessee Honey
Rocky Patel Platinum Robusto Cigar
New York Cheesecake

$79 per person | excludes tax and gratuity


Reservations recommended:call: 404-846-0644

Cragganmore 23 Year (K&L Wine)

Cragganmore Speyside Single Malt Scotch Whiskey 23 Years Old
54.8% ABV
What the Bottle Says:
Finally, the return of Cragganmore to the Faultline line up. One of our first bottlings was a fabulous 20 year old Craggy, from a hogshead. That was three years ago and we haven’t seen another Cragganmore from any of our suppliers since, so when this one popped up as a potential Faultline candidate we jumped on it. We were surprised again by both the quality and the incredible price! Cragganmore is distilled from very lightly peated barley. Over the course of 23+ years in a refill sherry butt, that subtle smokiness has morphed into what can only be described as quintessentially Speyside. Imagine a highland shrub recently in bloom after months of dormancy during the long cold winter. Imagine the honey bee attracted to the tiny purple flowers, returns to her hive, which is situated precariously on the outstretched limb of knobby oak tree. The honey slowly drips out of the dense honeycomb on to the damp reeds below. This tiny florally flecked speck of honey trapped on a blade of grass flutters in the breeze to land on a damp stone on the banks of the river Spey. Droplets from the idly lapping river loosen the blade from its sticky perch on the wet stone, eventually releasing it into the meandering river as it twists toward the north sea. Now imagine yourself with a bottle of Cragganmore. You have a very good imagination…

What Richard Says:
Nose: Heather, vanilla wafers, lavender honey, and a balanced sherry note that plays with a little leather and tobacco typically seen in malts of 30 plus years. Stone fruits and a little eucalyptus come out with a splash of water.
Palate: Damn! This is amazing. Sherry, vanilla cream, stone fruits, cherries jubilee, and oatmeal raisin cookies.
Finish: After 23 years the only place the oak shows up is the long lingering tale of the finish. Not too much. Just a slow steady swan song.
Comments: This is bottled at almost 55% alcohol by volume but it drinks much smoother than that. It’s almost a sin to add the water but not quite. Do so sparingly. This is one of only 270 bottles bottled exclusively for K&L Wine Merchants in California. The malt alone makes this a must buy but the price is a damn steal!
Rating: Must Buy