Review: Macallan 18 Sherry 1993

Paid: N/A – Sample

Distilled/Owned by: Macallan / Edrington Group

Region: Speyside

43% ABV

Aged For: 18 Years, distilled 1993

Mashbill: 100% malted barley

Cask Type: Oloroso sherry casks

Chill Filtered: Yes

Color Added: No

Color: Light mahogany

Drank: Neat, in a glencairn

Nose: Sherry, raisins, Christmas cake, dried fruits, orange peel, caramel, ginger, and wood spice

Feel: Medium body

Taste: Rich and fruity, caramel, chocolate sauce, oak, citrus, honey, malt, and fruitcake

Finish: Medium warmth, and lasting. Vanilla, sherry, creamy oak, dried citrus, and light roast coffee with cream

Thoughts: It’s a classic, and I really like it, but as far as bang for your buck, some IB sherry cask Glenrothes, Glen Morays, and even Glenlivets are the way to go.

Score: 90 out of 100

Laphroaig Cairdeas 2018 Fino Cask Finish

Laphroaig Cairdeas 2018 Fino

 

Price: $85 for 750ml

Distilled/Owned by: Laphroaig / Beam Suntory

Region: Islay

51.8% ABV

Aged For: NAS

Mashbill: 100% malted barley

Cask Type: 1st Fill ex-bourbon and Fino Sherry Casks

Chill Filtered: No

Color Added: No


Color: Off gold

Drank: Neat, in a glencairn

Nose: Sweetness, peach, sherry, salt, vanilla, gentle peat, cream, lemon, ash

Feel: Full and oily

Taste: Smokey brine, lemon, sugar, cream, pepper, vanilla, white wine

Finish: Medium warmth and length, lemon, ash, smoke, pepper, slightly dry, sherry, oak, vanilla, and berries

Thoughts: The palate is a bit weak in comparison to the nose and finish, but overall one of the better Cairdeas releases and a great malt.
Score: 86 out of 100

Domaine d’Esperance 14 Year 1998

Domaine d’Esperance 98

Paid: $95 for 750ml

Distilled/Owned by: Domaine d’Esperance

Region: Bas Armagnac, France

49% ABV

Aged For: 14 years

Grapes: Baco 22 A

Cask Type: French Gascon Oak, medium toast

Chill Filtered: No

Color Added: No


Color: Tawny

Drank: Neat, in a glencairn

Nose: Oak, sweet grapes, cinnamon, butterscotch, baking spices

Mouthfeel: Supple

Palate/Taste: A nice dry sweetness, raisins, toasted oak, coffee, and rye spice

Finish: Medium warmth and length, dry port wine, cloves oak, fig, and chocolate

Thoughts: This is one of the younger Armagnacs I have tried that would appeal to a bourbon drinker, while still being very distinctly a brandy.

Score: 83 out of 100

Plantation XO 20th Anniversary

Plantation XO 20th Anniversary

Price: $60 for 750ml

Distilled/Owned by: Sourced / Pierre Ferrand

Region: Barbados

40% ABV

Distillate: Molasses

Aged For: Blend of rums from 10 to 25 years

Cask Type:  New white oak, ex-bourbon, and Cognac casks

Chill Filtered: Undisclosed

Additives used: Yes


Color: Chestnut

Drank: Neat, in a glencairn

Nose: Molasses, oak, chocolate, toasted nuts, brown sugar, and vanilla

Mouthfeel:  Light bodied

Palate/Taste: Coconut, caramel, vanilla, brown sugar, oak, and fruit

Finish: Light warmth and length, Cola, cream, vanilla, caramel, and sugar

Thoughts: On its own it’s a decent sipping rum, but very sweet and not overly complex. I have noticed it pairs very well with cigars however.
Score: 80 out of 100

Laphroaig Cairdeas 2013 Port Wood Finish

Laphroaig Cairdeas Port

 

Price: Discontinued

Distilled/Owned by: Laphroaig / Beam Suntory

Region: Islay

51.3% ABV

Aged For: NAS

Mashbill: 100% malted barley

Cask Type: Ex-bourbon, finished in port casks

Chill Filtered: No

Color Added: No


 

Color: Tawny

Drank: Neat, in a glencairn

Nose: Earthy chocolate covered bacon, subtle port notes, oak, smoke, and caramel sauce

Feel: Medium to full body

Taste: Grape, chocolate, leather, peat smoke, vanilla, oak, and pepper

Finish: Medium warmth and length, earth, port, chocolate, oak, more smoke and less fruit than the palate

Thoughts: While I enjoyed it, its not my favorite version of Cairdeas, I would have liked a bit stronger of a port cask influence on it.
Score: 85 out of 100

Review: Ezra Brooks

Paid: $12 for 1 liter

Distilled/Owned by: Heaven Hill / Luxco

Region: Kentucky

45% ABV

Aged For: NAS

Mashbill: Undisclosed

Cask Type: New charred oak

Chill Filtered: Charcoal filtered

Color: Light amber

Drank: Neat, in a glencairn

Nose: Light caramel, corn, oak, vanilla. This one is really simple, nothing offense to it, just plain Jane

Feel: Light to medium body

Taste: Vanilla, corn, nutmeg, oak, and light hints of pepper. Again, nothing complex about it, but nothing offensive either.

Finish: Light to medium warmth, vanilla, caramel, honey, and spices.

Thoughts: For $12 you could do a hell of a lot worse, at the same time the old 7 year was $20 and was one of my go to every day bourbons and this is nowhere near that. Simple, and easy.

Score: 70 out of 100

Berneroy XO Calvados

Berneroy XO Calvados

Price: $30 for 750ml

Distilled/Owned by: Berneroy

Region: Normandy, France

40% ABV

Aged For: NAS, XO, Minimum 6 Years

Cask Type: “Seasoned” Barrels

Distillate: 180+ types of apples

Chill Filtered: Undisclosed

Color Added: Undisclosed


Color: Tarnished gold

Drank: Neat, in a glencairn

Nose: Cinnamon, apple, nougat, floral, and sugary fruits

Mouthfeel: Light bodied

Palate/Taste: Apples, vanilla, gentle plum, fig, floral, cider

Finish: Light warmth, short in length, apple, cinnamon, with pear, orchard fruit, and gentle oak

Thoughts: The flavors are solid, but the palate and finish are too gentle and weak for my personal preference.

Score: 74 out of 100