March 8, 2012

French & Japanese stand their ground in Dramland

Scene 1: Whisky Cat picks the Yoichi 10 yr old
Scene 2: The 'Princess' defiantly picks the Armorik

Scene 3: Whisky Cat walks away in disgust.

It's test time again at the ol' jackashack. Of course our trusty Whisky Cat was on hand for the dramming accompanied by a special guest (colour only) judge: The 'Princess'. Although incapable of articulating her opinions in any sort of rational fashion, I did see a substantially larger amount of drool when the French single malt was cracked open.

Ok kiddies (and cats), on with the lowdown: 

Armorik Breton French Single
Strong fruit, robust and full bloom. Over-ripe pears, graham crackers, toffee… smores??? (I know… my eyes are rolling too)

Starts off light, slightly smoky, fruity, nice finish, some honey mixed with some grassiness

Medium length, smoke comes in subtly and softly.

Wow, first thought is how did the French pull this off. But on closer inspection of the region of Brittany, and discovering the Gaelic roots in that region it’s no wonder this whisky delivers. Get it while you can at DVLB and LCBO because it’s not a stock item. A gentle whisky, not as gentle as a lowland whisky but definitely stands on it’s own. Well done.

Nikka Yoichi 10 yr old
Pronounced: ‘Yo-e-chee’
Meaning: bewitching and seductive (and it is)

Honey, sake, rice

Amazingly balanced is the first thing. Mellow, sweet honey notes carry throughout.

Long, long, and smooth. Smoke comes in late on this one and its trickery makes me smile.

Phenomenal whisky. The Japanese are scaring the hell out of me with this stuff. They aren’t fooling around. If the Scot’s aren’t paying attention, they should be. Makes me think of the American car companies laughing in the 70’s when the Japanese came to town. We all know what happened there. Kilt wearers be warned!

You call this a Bush party? You must be Putin me on. HA!
Caol Ila Distillers Edition 1996
Pronounced: ‘cool-eye-la’ or ‘cull-ee-la
(depending on who you ask)

Nose: (clearly this was the last one to be sampled as I got a little carried away with the descriptive) It’s an Islay, so of course peat is king here. One thing I love about whisky is just how many different degrees of peat you can get. I’ve talked about Laphroaig’s creosote inclinations in previous posts. Caol Ila’s Distillers Edition’s smoke is more of the embers after a bush party. (Scene: You're among the last that made it through the night and find yourself standing around what’s left of the bonfire with nothing to show for from the night before. The only thing keeping you humming along right now are those sweet red hot embers.... they carry you. (Now if you only had some marshmallows left, D'oh!!!) It’s a refined peat; a peat that doesn’t need to be center stage even though everyone in the crowd knows who the star is.


Bush party fires. fall leaves, junk yard dogs… walking down the railway line… Stand by me? Sorry no dead body notes... I think. Almost perfect as far as an Islay whisky goes. Can you taste your childhood adventures; the ones before you met face to face with responsibility? Sip this one and escape to that place again.

Woodsy, peaty, doesn’t overwhelm at all. Nice to see a refined peat.


Got to love the Islays. Got to love Caol Ila.

Hi there, we're the new international exchanges students... uh.
New Whiskey/Whiskies at DVLB this week:
Blanton's Single Barrel Kentucky Straight, Jura 200th Anniversary 21 yr old, Nikka Yoichi 10 yr old, Armorik Breton French Single, & Caol Ila 1996 Distillers Edition.

Next week we'll trip on down south on the Bourbon trail and ask why only Americans and the Irish spell it "Whiskey" (Probably something to do with their Brit hate-on)


1 comment:

  1. This girl would be right at home at DVLB....