Well, if your gonna do Burns Night you might as well open something special.
This Burns Day 2017 Spirit from the Eden Mill Distillery in Fife, Scotland, was part of a trilogy marking the coming of age of their own distillate.
I picked it up whilst visiting the distillery in Guardbridge a few years ago.
It has a number of things going for it.
The use of different malt varieties – Crystal & Brown malts have had additional roasting to boost flavour – as well as virgin oak maturation – would suggest this is an eminently quaffable & flavoursome spirit.
In other jurisdictions – America – this is whiskey. Just as it would have been in Burns day before the advent of age rules. So I cracked it open to sample the delights within.
First off – the colour.
In keeping with Eden Mill’s ethos, I’m banking this is natural colour from both the toasted malt & virgin oak barrel.
Second off – it’s young, it’s fresh & it’s very engaging!
A lovely strong vanilla from the virgin oak casks comes through with a bit of bourbony toastiness – and a spirity kick.
On the palate it starts off smoothly. There’s not much body or depth – but the flavours are clean, fresh & lively!
There’s a slight tannic spiciness on the finish leaving a pleasant prickly tingling.
For a 2yo – there is no new make aroma – this possesses the rudiments of a lovely young malt.
Looking forward to future releases from Eden Mill.
On my last visit to Eden Mill – which is a combined Brewery & Distillery operation on the banks of the Eden River in Guardbridge, Scotland – the opener for the distillery tour was a bottle of their fine Whisky Barrel Aged Beer.
It certainly loosened up the tongues of the mixed bag of visitors on the day – and was a novel way to introduce the rich variety of drinks including beers, gins & whiskies made at the facility.
Bottled at 6.7% the dark beer delivered a gentle aroma of malt. The carbonation wasn’t too strong – more in the style of a traditional Scottish Heavy Ale – with a great outpouring of flavour comprising of caramel, burnt molasses, a hint of dark chocolate & coffee too.
There is also a limited edition Bourbon Barrel offering – slightly sweeter & heavier if possible – with a younger 68 day age statement as opposed to the 93 of the Whisky Barrel Beer.
Whatever your poison – Eden Mill have a drink to satisfy.
Spotting a new whisky shop in the pretty East Neuk village of Anstruther what else was I to do but go in and buy a few?
The Wee Couper Of Fife stocks a highly varied selection of whiskies and a wide array of whisky paraphernalia – from tartan hip-flasks & quirky miniatures for the tourists – which I bought – to select single malts & single casks for the purists.
One I purchased was the cheekily named & labelled Kilty Pleasure Scotch from Select Drams.
Select Drams have built up a wholesale drinks supply business specialising in ‘miniatures, gifting and specialist bottlings’ – of which Kilty Pleasure is part of a series.
They also do aged statement single malts from renowned distilleries – but this non age statement blend from unknown sources caught my eye – well – it does play up on the stereotypes – and it amused me!
So was it pleasurable?
In a word – yes!
To be honest it’s fairly standard stuff.
A soft, sweet caramelly nose.
A honeyed smooth palate – easy accessible drinking – no jarring notes – yet developing into a decent prickly heat with just a touch of oaky spice.
If you were buying this as a present – or just for the laugh as I was – Kilty Pleasure possesses enough character & style to carry the whole presentation off.
Congratulations to Select Drams for bringing some light hearted fun to the category!