As I rapidly approach 500 tasting notes I took the time to reflect on some of the more interesting and colorful notes that I have written. My first reaction when I reread many of them was to ask myself if I was drinking at the time I wrote that? My second reaction was to remember that I was most definitely drinking at the time and there is no doubt some of the better notes (better in the sense of memorable at least) came later in the “longer” tasting sessions. As I have discussed before my approach to tasting whisky is quite loose and unstructured (which makes whisky to whisky comparisons totally unfair so I no longer “score” whiskies) but I think that randomness helps me create an expression, or to be honest to recreate or borrow an expression from elsewhere. Anyway here are some of my favorites from last 18 months or so along with the whisky I was tasting at the time I was inspired:
Weymss The Hive 12 year old: “more honey than Winnie the Pooh’s poos.”
Longmorn 16 year old: “tastes like a curlywurly had a baby with pencil”
Blaue Maus Single Cask: “Smelled like the alleyway between a bakery and greengrocers shop”
GlenDronach PX Puncheon: “a Spanish bar fight … after drinking you feel like you have been smashed in the face with a sherry bottle”
Crown Royal Maple: “It smells like the inside of Mrs Butterworth's laundry basket”
Buck Bourbon: “Like Toy Story 3 this one is a little predictable and woody”
Colonel EH Taylor Rye: “indian food and cucumbers”
Adnams Spirit of Broadside: “reminded me of the menswear section in a department store”
Knockando Master Reserve 21 year old: “like eating a Rolo while sniffing sherry”
Drambuie: “chewing a pencil that had been dipped in sugar and cough syrup”
The more astute readers may have noticed that while I am still posting regular reviews my blog entries are now rarer that a Scotsman drinking English whisky on Burns Night or perhaps Edward Snowden at an NSA employees reunion picnic. I could make excuses around work and family but the truth is I simply have less to say. Rest assured I have not lost any interest in, or my passion for, whisky. However in a recent online discussion in a Whisky Bloggers forum I made the analogy between blog entries and the “difficult second album”. When I set my website up I had lots to say and couldn’t wait to share my passion and release all the thoughts that I had accumulated on my whisky journey. I had several years of ideas and beliefs and I now had a forum to express. Just like a newly signed band has all their life experiences to date to draw on and an entire catalog of songs to use when they record their first album I had oodles of blog matter ready to go. However when the demand for a second album of new material comes along often what is left to draw on is the stuff that wasn’t good enough for the first album and the life experiences of just the last 6 months. In short a much shallower pool of material. So I have a choice; to use the ideas that were either half-baked or not good enough for the first couple of years that my website has existed or be patient and wait for inspiration as and when (or indeed if) it comes. I choose the second option (for your sake). In the meantime I promise will keep drinking, tasting and exploring whisky.
This decision created a bit of an issue (in my mind) with the current web site structure as the home page only shows the most recent blog entry. The lack of new blog entries therefore creates the impression that nothing has changed and this site is deader than the Houston Texans season and about as lively as Matt Schaub’s throwing arm. In reality I may have posted lots of new tasting notes but how would you know? As I mentioned above I don’t want to post something for the sake of posting something so I have decided to restructure the website so that every time I write a new review and tasting notes it will update the home page. A simple change (we shall see exactly how “simple” in coming week or so) but it will keep site refreshed and then I will only feel the need to post blog entries when I am inspired and actually have something to say and you might actually want to read.