Thursday, July 06, 2006

Whisky tasting

Apologies in advance if some of this doesnt make sense, but Ive just been doing a whisky tasting with Eddie from LVMH. Im not used to drinking spirits, and as a few of the whiskies we tasted were cask strength, its fair to say I'm a bit half-cut.

Now I dont like whisky, but a bit part of my role is to know about these products, and to be able to sell them, I have to know them. So I was prepared to sacrifice myself for the furtherment of my education. Now after many years of doing this, Ive kind of developed a method to tasting spirits, that allows me to get the flavour, without to much alcohol burn, and that usually involves me allowing the minutest amount of spirit into my mouth. But today I got a pleasant surprise, I actually found that I enjoyed some of the whiskies, and I even found two that I could drink (alas their price means that I wont be able to!!). It got me thinking about how my palate is maturing, and how a product that even five years ago I couldnt possibly drink, now starts to appeal to me. The one whisky that really caught my attention was the Glenmorangie 30year old. Its distinctive packaging - a solid brown box with leather straps - together with the undestated label give it the air of something a bit different. The whisky itself has a slightly rose tint to it, and a really vibrant nose of dried fruits, spices and soft nutty - kind of walnut whip like aroma. On the palate it is amazingly smooth, with an opening flavour similar to biting into a fresh peachskin, with more typical fruit cake flavours and a dundee marmalade character underneath. The Oloroso cask aging lends a sultana, baked spiced apple sort of flavour. So smooth and rich I could still taste it five minutes later. I actually was reluctant to pour the last drop out in order to try the next bottle.

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