Another point I want to raise. You will recall when, a number of years ago, Shiraz (Syrah) from the new world propelled regular wine drinking on to the palates of more "normal" folk (I am not being snobbish!). After a time of drinking such a big bruiser of a grape/wine, I found that many people's palates "matured" to the finesse and elegance of the old world wines. I wonder whether it will be the same with Islay malts - a great many "beginners" swear by Islay malts now - but will they end up in Speyside? Mortlach would certainly have the necessary "punch" to draw them across.
Then, I started trying other things: blends, Irish (SM, blend, and pot-still), bourbon, Japanese, American single malts, Canadian whiskies, straight rye... all have good things to offer.
Still haven't tried a Mortlach, yet. I've been on a bourbon/rye kick lately.
However lets post it anyway.
I also find the F&F Mortlach a good whisky, but I would deffinatly not go to extremes as stating its the best sherried malt out there, nor compare it with the Macallan in general (perhaps with the 12Y old). I would however compare it with the Dailuaine F&F bottling. Looking at my notes from a Mortlach tasting a while ago I notice its the second best Mortlach i tried, rating 85 where the Murray McDavid 1990 rates 87. However all the other Mortlachs i tried rate only in the high 70's.
It is more then decent but there are other distillerys out there that supply just as good if not better bottlings with a more consistent nature. Glenfarclas is one example.
Just a look from the other side to add some balance
Dailuaine 16 F&F 43%
Nose: Floral and a subtle hint of leafs. Grassy. Thin yet pronounced Sherry presence.Slightly oaky in the background. General light nose but sometimes a litlle pungent. Fruity with some citrus and more dried fruit like raisins and oranges.
Taste: Sweet with crisp sweet malt. Very good sherry and slightly dry. Edgy. Barley-sugar sweetness. Light and subtle hints of matured oak and spicy herbs. Burnt brown sugar.
Finish: Sherry and sweet malt. No sudden changes in the finish. Flavors gradually dissolve. Some brown sugar remains a litlle longer and a short appearance of oak, but everything is well balanced.
Opinion: Much sweeter then other typical sherry whiskies. Well balanced but is lacking a bit in complexity. Key words are sherry, sweet malt and burnt sugar (caramelized sugar)
Hope this helps. mind you, the sherry is more pronounced here in comparison with the Mortlach.
susywong wrote:I'm in total agreement. The F&F bottling would have to be without a doubt the best bottling of Mortlach on the go. (the 1980 cask strength F&F bottling comes a close second!!)
The Provenance (1992?) bottling is my favourite Mortlach hands down. You did the notes for it, I believe. It was a bourbon casked and a refreshing change to the F&F which I find gets it's arse tanned red raw by Macallan 12.
if the Mortlach Provenance you talk about is a 12yo bottled 2004 then yes I have tried it. Although it had plenty of character I found it to be a bit of a mixed bag and had a slightly off-note on the taste. Autumnal woodlands, spicy and liqurice on the nose, cereals and nuts to taste and quite a short finish. Better Mortlachs since have been a Dewar Rattray 15yo and OMC 30yo. OMC 19yo still a firm favourite though the 1980 from Gordon and MacPhail comes close.
MrTattieHeid wrote:jlane, I've made a similar point before--that beginners are either attracted to Lagavulin and the like, or turned off; and the former may start off as Islay freaks and learn to appreciate the rest as they go along, while the latter may work up to an appreciation of peat monsters eventually. Whatever works! I'd been tasting whiskies for a while with mixed results when Lagavulin took me by the throat. My experience has broadened since, but I think it still has a long way to go.
how have your tastes changed? i recently was thinking about this, because i was and am a lover of highly peated whisky, or so i thought, but as i was looking at my open bottles yesterday, i had a Compass Box Eleuthera, Bowmore Legend and Laphroaig CS. It was like a slap in the face because when i went to look at my notes, i found that i wasnt ranking these malts as highly as i thought. I wonder if part of the allure is the IDEA of Islay malts, in that they are distinctive and very different, rather than the actual whisky. Aside from Lagavulin no other Islay was in my top ten.
patrick dicaprio wrote:how have your tastes changed? i recently was thinking about this, because i was and am a lover of highly peated whisky, or so i thought, but as i was looking at my open bottles yesterday, i had a Compass Box Eleuthera, Bowmore Legend and Laphroaig CS. It was like a slap in the face because when i went to look at my notes, i found that i wasnt ranking these malts as highly as i thought. I wonder if part of the allure is the IDEA of Islay malts, in that they are distinctive and very different, rather than the actual whisky. Aside from Lagavulin no other Islay was in my top ten.
If you have gone off Islay malts, that leaves all the more for me.
The Dazzler wrote:Does your tastes change? I don`t think this is the case.
By "tastes", I think we mean preferences and appreciation, rather than the actual sense of taste--although that can certainly be honed and refined.
I started out as a "Lagavulin uber alles" kind of guy. Now I hardly ever touch it, and in fact, it seems to give me a headache. Ardbeg is by far the tops for a peaty dram, followed by Laphroaig and Caol Ila--not necessarily in that order. But I find that I appreciate such more if they constitute only a fraction of what I drink. I've been drinking a lot of different things lately, so I can't say what my core tastes are right now; maybe there aren't any, and never will be again. That's okay with me. That said, I can always take a Balvenie 15, any Glenrothes, or almost any Bruichladdich without any hesitation.
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