the whisky lounge - a journal tracking a whisky maturation project involving a newly-acquired oak cask and a significant amount of patience

Sunday, February 10, 2008

A New Taste Sensation

This is Part Three of the second week's discussion. You can read Part One here, and Part Two here.

The taste of the whisky is again unrecognisable in comparison to its un-aged self, and dramatically different from the flavour of the whisky after one week as well. Last time we had a spicy start, with a long, oaky finish. The fruit and honey evident in the nose was buried very deeply in the taste. This time around, the predominance of the alcohol has continued to subside, though the spiciness I found in week one is also not as strong. I'm noticing the oak come through very early in the taste now, rather than dominating only the finish. The finish has a saltier tang than last time as well, which is interested and unexpected, given that I have no idea where the salt is coming from: the cask is sitting beside some houseplants and a speaker, miles from salty sea air.

Another thing I find surprising is that the whisky is not as sweet as I'd expected. In fact, there are significant bitter aspects in its taste. The tannins are starting to rear their heads in a dramatic fashion. This isn't unexpected, I guess, when I think about it, but to find them so strong in week two while not apparent at all earlier on is of note. There's a definite hint of dark chocolate and unsweetened vanilla.

Given the dramatic changes in flavour from the beginning through the first two trials, I can confidently predict that I have no idea whatsoever what the whisky will be like after week three. I guess we'll have to wait and see.

Until then,

Ian

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