Review: Speyside Distilllery 21-Year 1993 Distiller’s Art

Paid: $96 for 700ml

Distilled/Owned by: Speyside Distillery / Hunter Laing

Region: Speyside

48% ABV

Aged For: 21 Years, Distilled 1993, Bottled 2015

Mashbill: 100% malted barley

Cask Type: Sherry Butt

Chill Filtered: No

Color Added: No

Color: Amber

Drank: Neat, in a glencairn

Nose: Earthy nutty sherry, leather, oak, blackberry, cherry, dirt

Feel: Medium body

Taste: Sherry, caramel, nuts, figs, malt, bitter pepper, malt, sour mustiness

Finish: Light to medium warmth and medium length, cream and honey, sour fruit, coffee, and oak

Thoughts: It smells and starts out like a good sherried dram, with heavy nut flavors, but then on the backside of the palate and finish it has a bitter and sour note that spoils the drink. Flawed.

Score: 76 out of 100

Review: J. Goudoulin 18-Year 2000 SMWS A3.2 “Fruity pipe tobacco”

Paid: $130 for 750ml

Distilled/Owned by: J. Goudoulin / SMWS

Region: Bas Armganac

46.7% ABV

Aged For: 18 Years, distilled 2000

Cask Type: Gascon Black Oak

Grapes: Baco & Ungi Blanc

Chill Filtered: No

Color Added: No

Color: Chestnut

Drank: Neat, in a glencairn

Nose: Dried fruit, raisins, fig, alcohol solvent, aromatic pipe tobacco, apricot glaze, oak

Mouthfeel: Medium body

Palate/Taste: Honey, apples, oak, cinnamon, citrus, calvados, aromatic pipe tobacco

Finish: Light to medium warmth, in-between short and medium length, apple, cinnamon, pine resin, oak, vanilla, honey, and caramel

Thoughts: At times this was more calvados like than Armagnac, nothing mind blowing, easy to sip, but a bit weak and the nose is a bit rough at times.

Score: 77 out of 100

Darroze Domaine de Monturon 2003

Darroze Domaine de Monturon 2003

Price: $95 for 750ml

Distilled/Owned by: Domaine de Monturon

Region: Bas Armagnac, France

50% ABV

Aged For: 12-Years

Cask Type: French oak

Chill Filtered: No

Color Added: No


Color: Amber

Drank: Neat, in a glencairn

Nose: Light grape, apple, pear, orchard fruits, oak, and cinnamon

Mouthfeel: Oily

Palate/Taste: Rich dried fruits, light sherry, raisin, candied orange, and vanilla oak

Finish: Warm and lasting, dry baking spice, light oak, cinnamon, sherry, dried fruit, and grapes

Thoughts: If I had tried this blind I would have almost thought it was a malt whisky or even possibly a calvados, it doesn’t have a flavor similar to other Armagnacs I have tried.

Score: 79 out of 100

Kirin Fuji-Sanroku

Kirin Fuji-Sanroku

Distilled/Owned by: Kirin

Region: Japan

50% ABV

Aged For: NAS

Chill Filtered: No


Color: Light Amber

Drank: Neat, in a glencairn

Nose: Banana, honey, oak, grains, cream, and spice

Feel: Medium to full bodied

Taste: Sweet and fruity with banana, coconut, vanilla, and cream

Finish: Warm, lasting, vanilla, honey, chocolate, almond, spices, and a touch of fruit

Thoughts: The heavy banana notes were a bit off-putting for me, but otherwise a standard fruity malt

Score: 75 out of 100

Crown Royal Hand Selected Barrel Duex

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Paid: $60 for 750ml

Distilled/Owned by: Crown Royal / Diageo

Region: Canada

51.5% ABV

Aged For: NAS

Mashbill: 64% corn, 31.5% rye, and 4.5% malted barley

Cask Type: New oak, and maybe reused casks

Chill Filtered: No

Color Added: No


Color: Gold

Drank: Neat, in a glencairn

Nose: Sharp grain, sweet oak, vanilla, honey, earth, flowers, and light bubblegum

Feel: Medium body

Taste: Sweet, simple syrup, honey, artificial vanilla, corn, and oak

Finish: Medium warmth and length, sweet oak and bubblegum, touches of fruit and oak

Thoughts: Much harsher than the last barrel I tried and I’m hoping some air will do this one good over time.

Score: 75 out of 100

Ron Zacapa XO

Ron Zacapa XO

Price: $120 for 750ml

Distilled/Owned by: Industria Licoreras de Guatemala / Diageo

Region: Guatemala

40% ABV

Distillate: Sugarcane honey

Aged For: NAS, 6-23 years Solera style

Cask Type: Ex-bourbon and ex-sherry, finished in cognac casks

Chill Filtered: Yes

Additives used: Yes


Color: Cloudy old oak

Drank: Neat, in a glencairn

Nose: Old molasses, oak, coconut, brown sugar, vanilla

Mouthfeel: Light bodied

Palate/Taste: Vanilla, flat cola, brown sugar, marzipan, more sugar

Finish: Short length, light warmth, molasses, sugar, vanilla, coconut, and coca-cola

Thoughts: I prefer my rum neat, but this is pretty close to drinking a rum and coke on its own, not worth the price.

Score: 77 out of 100

 

Kirk and Sweeney 23

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Price: $60 for 750ml

Distilled/Owned by: Bermudez

Region: Dominican Republic

40% ABV

Distillate: Molasses

Aged For: 23 Years

Cask Type: Undisclosed

Chill Filtered: Yes?

Additives used: Undisclosed


Color: Copper

Drank: Neat, in a glencairn

Nose: Thick caramel, marzipan, boozy rum, molasses, nutty, with brown sugar

Mouthfeel: Light bodied

Palate/Taste: Vanilla ice cream, brown sugar, more vanilla, hints of marzipan and caramel

Finish: Light warmth and short, caramel, oak, sugar, and vanilla

Thoughts: It’s not a bad rum, but if it is indeed 23 years in a cask It doesn’t show.

Score: 77 out of 100