We all know about grain whisky, it’s the stuff they put in the blended whisky to bulk it up right ? … If this is the way you think then prepare to have your whole world rocked. Grain whisky is getting a name for itself as a great whisky in its own right ! There is some absolutely fantastic single grain whisky expressions out there and last night ( 8-6-16 ) I was privileged to take part in a tasting of 4 fabulous examples from William Grant and Sons, this evening was arranged by Steve from the Whisky Wire in conjunction with Alwynne Gwilt,( now working with Balvenie) who is a member of William Grant and Sons team.. The evening consisted of 4 older expressions of grain whisky that included whisky from closed distilleries like Inverleven, Ladyburn and Dumbarton.
The first offering off the night was ” Proof Strength” this is a NAS grain whisky that is bottled at 51.7%abv..
Nose.. This started off with big vanilla notes mingling with fruity scents of banana, pear and apple pie along with candied orange, toffee apples and a faint hint of pineapple. Heather honey carried more sweetness with caramel and soft scents of coconut.
Palate.. Very much as the nose suggested, very smooth and creamy with lots of vanilla, caramel, fresh fruity notes with citrus notes and gentle spices..
Next up was the 25yo which is bottled at 42% abv.
Nose.. Very fresh with fruity sweet notes that caresses the inside of the nostrils, lovely subtle vanilla, caramel and toffee notes gently rise all the time holding onto classy citrus notes and subtle oaky aromas.
Palate.. Again very creamy and extremely smooth, a lovely fresh mouthfeel off candy store treats, citrus notes and gentle oak, toffee and caramel poured over poached pear and baked apples.
Finish.. Spiced oak with a sweet twist.
The 3rd offering was the 21yo Ghosted Reserve.. This was bottled at 42.8% abv and has some rare grain whisky in the mix..
Nose.. This was quite a subtle nose with lots of delicate sweetness and fruity delights, heather honey mixed it up with citrus scents and wood spices, toffee apples played with cinnamon and ginger notes, heather honey with subtle oak, apple blossom with a hint of nutmeg.
Palate.. Again the palate just follows straight on from the nose, everything you get on the nose you taste.. The sweetness along with the spicy oak notes are just beautifully balanced..
Finish.. Spiced oak with a twist of citrus.
Last at up was the 26yo Rare Cast Reserve.. Bottled at 42%abv.
Nose.. Once again this nose is gentle and delicate but extremely Devine, vanilla and citrus aromas blend themselves with almonds, spices and oak notes perfectly.
Palate.. Creamy, smooth and deliciously rich this just coats the mouth with soft a sweetness that just makes you want to dive right back in. There is a soft malty, nutty side to this with loads of citrus and fruity flavours, lovely sweet candy notes just make this extremely drinkable..
This was a real pleasure to take part in and the quality of grain whisky was second to none… So next time your looking to buy a single malt just give a little glance over at the grain section, you might just be very pleasantly surprised..
Once again I would like to thank William Grant and Sons, Steve from the Whisky Wire and Alwynne GWilt for the opportunity to sample and take part in this extremely pleasurable tasting..