Category Archives: Other Whisk(e)ys

Advent Day 16: Kavalan

Day 16 of the Whisky Advent Calendar comes all the way from Taiwan…

Kavalan Single Malt Whisky
40% ABV

What the Distillery Says
Kavalan Classic Single Malt Whisky exemplifies the sheer quality of whisky currently coming out of Taiwan. The skills of Master Blender Ian Chang work with the humid Taiwanese climate to create whisky that is diverse and complex. Fresh and clean, the spirit is rich with silky smoothness and hints of tropical fruits, mango in particular.

Nose: Clean, elegant, floral (pleasant & refreshing fragrance of the butterfly orchid), fruity and seductive. With hints of honey, tropical fruits (mango in particular), pear drop, vanilla, coconuts and suggestions of chocolate.

Palate: A hint of sweet mango juice with that spicy complexity and gentle warmth on a medium, oily and citrus finish.

Tasting: Kavalan classic is the perfect partner for seafood. We suggest sometimes you can dilute Kavalan classic with water, the perfect racio is “Kavalan Classic 1: Water 5”, and add ice to cool.

What Richard Says
Nose: Poached pear and green apple sweetness with a mild malty backbone.
Palate: Delicate and floral with notes of under ripe apples, expressed citrus peel, and digestive biscuits.
Finish: Lingering wet wood and vanilla extract.
Comments: I’ve only been fortunate enough to try Kavalan a few times and this is my first experience with their signature malt. It is a lovely, clean, well crafted malt that sits a bit middle of the road. It won’t offend any camp of whisky enthusiast but it won’t set them on fire either. One for the Glenmorangie fans out there.
Rating: Stand Out

Advent Day 14: Mackmyra Brukswhisky

Day 14 of the whisky advent calendar bring a Swedish treat…

Mackmyra Brukswhisky Swedish Single Malt Whisky
41.4% ABV

What the Distillery
Mackmyra Brukswhisky is an exciting, well-balanced whisky, created to be enjoyed at all times. Enjoy Brukswhisky as it is, with or without ice, on any occasion.

NOSE Butterscotch, citrus, pear, licorice, banana and mint.

TASTE Fresh fruity and peppery. Youthful, fruity flavor with a spicy taste of toffee.

What Richard Says
Nose: Kind of mealy with notes of barley and malt.
Palate: Fruity sweet with an edging of ground black pepper. Clean with a slightly minty note.
Finish: Fleeting with a bit more pepper spice.
Comments: Meh. This is my first experience with Mackmyra and it isn’t starting with a great first impression. This is very light, uninspiring, and should probably be regulated to a mixer…and a pricey mixer at that.
Rating: Average

Advent Day 3: Bain’s Single Grain

And on the third day of Advent my calendar gave to me…

Bain’s Cape Mountain Whisky
40% ABV

What the Distillery Says
Bain’s Single Grain Whisky is a double matured whisky produced from 100% South African Yellow Maize, you may call this corn. We first mature it in specially selected first-fill bourbon casks for a period of three years, we then transfer it to a second set of first-fill bourbon casks for a further 18 to 30 months to extract a full rich flavor like no other.

COLOR: Warm, golden amber
NOSE: Combination of toffee, floral and vanilla aromas
PALATE: A hint of spice softened by the sweet undertones of oak
FINISH: A warm and extended mouth-feel with an exceptionally smooth finish

What Richard Says
Nose: Clearly grain with the signature light toffee and floral notes. At the back there is a bit of vanilla and something slightly astringent.
Palate: Creamy and sweet with a big helping of vanilla ice cream with butterscotch sauce drizzled on top.
Finish: Herbal and slightly spicy with a bit of high cacao dark chocolate.
Comments: Like many younger grain whiskeys, this is not terribly complex. It is oozing with sweetness that makes it terribly easy to drink. This comes from the same providence as the Three Ships brand. With only a couple of distilleries in South Africa putting out aged whiskey, this is good chance to give it a try at a modest price. Fans of Haig Club should definitely check this out.
Rating: Stands Out

Tis the season for…Advent!

Did you ever have one of those chocolate advent calendars when you were a kid? I did. I didn’t have one every year but the few times I did I really enjoyed it. It was fun to open a new box every day leading up to Christmas and see what surprise laid in wait. Wouldn’t it be a form of Christmas magic if such a thing existed for whiskey? Well…it does. Whiskey advent calendars have been a thing for a few years now. It’s taken me until this year to give one a try.

I chose the standard “Whiskey Advent Calendar” from Master of Malt as my first foray into Advent whiskey style. It’s around $170 which seems to be a pretty good deal for a month (more or less) of whiskey fun. So since we finished running through reviews and coverage on all the new releases flowing through Whisk(e)y Apostle HQ recently I thought it would be fun to chronicle Advent this year.

Cheers and Happy Holidays!

– Richard

McCarthy’s Single Malt

McCarthy’s Oregon Sing Malt Pot Distilled Whiskey
Batch W16-02

42.5% ABV

What the Distillery Says
McCarthy’s® Oregon Single Malt Whiskey is distilled in a Holstein pot still using one pass distillation. This premium, non-chill filtered product is then barrel-aged in air-dried Oregon Oak barrels. The result is remarkably smooth for a 3-year-old whiskey.

What Gary Says

What Richard Says
Nose: An interesting mix of delicate peat, wet pine needles, and campfire smoke.
Palate: A rich honeyed sweetness intermingled with an authoritative peat and pine straw.
Finish: The finish is lingering smokiness, cracked pepper, and a bitter tinge.
Comments: “Oregon Pot Still Whiskey”, what the hell is that? This is easiest to describe as an American version of Laphroaig 10 Year. It tastes A LOT like that. The fact that this is only three years old really blows me away. Fans of smoky Scotch should really give this one a try. It is incredibly impressive.
Rating: Must Try

We would like to thank Hood River Distillers for sending us a bottle for review.