The 12 drams of xmas: Day 5

Continuing the series of reports on the 12 drams of xmas twitter tasting event:

Quick reminder: 11 online whisky enthusiasts poured half a bottle of whisky into 10 sample bottles and sent them to the other 10 taking part. The bottles were marked only with the number of the day we were due to start. On the given day, we all blind tasted the chosen dram and tried to guess what it was.

Though I did well on some of the drams and embarrassingly badly on some others, I’m posting my tasting notes, my unedited guesses and revealing the answers.

Dram #5 was from Rod Graham (@rodbodtoo on twitter), author of a nce blog here. Here are my notes:

Nose: Sherbet, icing sugar, vanilla, sugar puffs and a very faint whiff of peat.

Palate: Sweet vanilla and sherbet with a bourbon influence.

Finish: Drying pepper and oak, very faint smoke and malted milk biscuits.

My guess: A lot of the notes reminded me of Caol Ila, but the peat wasn’t as big. I therefore went for an older Caol Ila (because peat diminishes with age), but didn’t want to guess too old as nobody is going to give away 20+yr old whisky to 10 people! I plugged for a Caol Ila 15 at cask strength 56% abv.

The answer: Caol Ila 12 year old unpeated islay whisky, 2010, 57.6% ABV

Pretty pleased with this one to be honest. Distillery right, instinct on the peat not bad, and ABV pretty close. There was smoke, which I find confusing in an unpeated whisky. Still, it was really nice!

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