It seems these days there is an abundance of independent bottlers who are releasing a wide array of whiskies and of course other spirits but since this is basically a whisky blog then lets stick to whisky.. As i mentioned there is indie bottlers popping up every other day or so it seems..
So what should we be looking for in order to make a good decision when it comes to parting with money. Firstly reputation is obviously a good starting point, companies like Douglas Laing, BBR, Signatory and Boutiquey have all managed to build up a good reputation for releasing good whisky..
The Whisky Cellar is in the early stages of this process so how do you know if its safe to part with your money ? Well firstly id say whisky is mostly a good product and is pretty consistent, i did say mostly !! There are no guarantees here, although you do have to remember these companies don’t want to give you crap whisky as they require you to come back !
Secondly, watch for those reviews, you may not always agree with us but if the general opinion is the whiskies are good then you have a number of positive opinions, we cant all be wrong surely..
Lastly and for me this is possibly the most important one, trust your instinct, if its a whisky distillery you know well then just ask a few questions… Does the distillery generally offer consistent releases, do you often find consistency within the indie bottles and lastly if its a whisky that is a left field maturation that you are not sure about then can you afford to take a chance ? Do you have an opportunity to get a sample ?
A lot of the indies release either single casks or very small batch bottlings, this can often mean you will be buying whiskies that will not be typical to official core range releases so be aware.. Also remember that most of the online shops will offer an opinion or tasting notes too..
House Malt 2011 cask #900177
Distillery.. Teaspooned – Unknown
Age.. 9 / 10 years
Cask.. First Fill Oloroso Butt
Bottler.. The Whisky Cellar
Outturn.. 699 Bottles
Nose.. Freshly peeled granny smith’s apples, Poached pear, pineapple and fresh fruit syrup.. Dates, raisins and chocolate mingle with vanilla, toffee and glazed donuts.. Digestive biscuits, glace cherries, peanut brittle and a hint of Bounty bars come in eventually.
Palate.. Dates, plums and raising mix with Ginger, not any old ginger though.. Ginger bread men ginger.. Coffee and dark bitter chocolate infused with orange
Finish.. Spices linger with bitter chocolate.
Thoughts.. This whisky comes in at 57.1% and boasts a price tag of £49.95 over on Master of Malt.. There is not really much more i need to add to that !!
But if you need a little more from my thought process then ill say this, There is plenty on offer in this whisky, it is full of inviting aromas, good flavours and it is very easy to drink, and once again it is sub £50.. To some this is a magical number, it might be your top budget, it might be the typical price tag of the whiskies you buy and it might even be a figure that is beyond what you have spent so far.. What you need to ask now is, is this whisky for you ?
As i said above this is a whisky that is not allowing the bottler to name it so therefore the price is affected, it is in essence an blended malt rather than a blended whisky, this also could be a single malt as there is a thought that actually no extra liquid goes into these “teaspooned” whiskies..
With thanks to The Whisky Cellar and Steve Rush from Tweet Tastings for this official sample..