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My Handcrafted Opinions on Whiskies, Distilleries and Other Related Stuff

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Most Recent Whisky Review

Bushmills #3 Char Bourbon Cask

I always question "bourbon cask" finished as a feature of any whisky as most Scotch and Irish is matured in Bourbon casks.  It is like saying a "metal car" or a "terrible Brexit plan"; it's a  bit redundant.  Bushmills have highlghted the #3 char of oak casks used (meaning a few seconds less exposure to fire than the more common #4) as the USP of this expression.  The nose is malty with banana, vanilla and milk chocolate.  The taste also has malt and nuts, lemon citrus peel and sweet peanut brittle.  The finish is initially sugar coating on tongue with a spicy note of cinnamon and tamale hots candy at the end.  At end of the day it is another bourbon cask finished whisky and there is not much here that stands out so if you are in mood for no-age expression Bushmills (and why not) I would probably recommend Black Bush over this one.

 

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  • Am I the only person more than a little surprised by the recent Whisky Advocate article on summer cocktails?   I was really excited about finding new ways to drink whisky during the incredibly long and hot summers we "enjoy" in Texas because I was seriously considering taking my summer drinking business back to simple, cold beer.   Dave Broom did contribute a very nice piece on ice, water and soda with whisky and I will certainly try some of his recommendations, but the piece I was really anticipating on whisky summer cocktails was frustrating to put it mildly.  I am guessing the average whisky enthusiast has a well-stocked bar and could rustle up most common cocktail ingredients and even find a bottle of Angostura bitters in the back of cupboard somewhere.  However there was not one cocktail in the nine recipes offered I could make that did not require a visit to a specialty store to acquire a spirit, liqueur or mixer so obscure that when typed into Google would simply generate "?" as a reply.  In addition all the recipes required me to formulate some syrup or other "pre-drink" concoction (Rosemary-chamomile syrup or fresh peach juice anyone?) before I could even begin to assemble the actual cocktail.

     

    The list of ingredients included the following:

    Mathidle Peche liqueur

    Lapsang Souchong tea syrup

    Aperol

    Fruitlab Hibiscus liqueur

    Bitter Truth aromatic bitters

    Rocky Mountain peach whiskey

    Rosemary-chamomile syrup

    My whisky budget is strained to beyond its intended breaking point and I can't be alone in refusing to buy a bottle of hibiscus liqueur even if I could find it in Texas , which I doubt, and if I did I would probably become the target of an state government observation program.  The subscribers and readers of Whisky Advocate are, I suspect, like me.  They are whisky drinkers not mixologists  and  I am guessing the numbers of actual subscribers who have actually made one of recipes in the magazine would be far less than 1% on a good day.   Was that really your intent?

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    Random Whisky

    Angels Envy Rye

    This is 50% ABV, 95% rye whisky finished in Caribbean rum casks.   This is the brand extension of Angels Envy bourbon which is finished in port casks. I have a soft spot for rum finished whiskies, Glenfiddich produces one of my favorites, but I think I was going to like this one with that favorable predisposition. The nose was beautiful with brown sugar, toasted marshmallow, vanilla and butterscotch.   The taste was very sweet but the rye spice balanced it out. Barley sugars, toffee and herbal notes like fresh cut grass all collide on the palate. The fish has a big belt of rye, mint and the rum. With water I found the sweetness went down and the pepper and spice came up. I used to consider Sazerac my “go to” rye whisky but it has a serious competitor for my affections now.