Which would you choose?
A single malt from a well known Islay Distillery versus a blend sold by an upcoming Lowland Distillery sourced from unnamed origins?
Luckily for me – I had both!
Art Of The Blend 3 was a limited edition release allowing Eden Mill Distillery to practice their blending & marketing skills in advance of their own whisky maturing.
It came in a highly attractive bottle – which has since continued into their own releases – containing malt & grain whiskies finished in Islay Whisky Casks.
I found it crisp, clear, vibrant and highly enjoyable.
You could say it was smokin’!
By contrast Bowmore No 1 – named after the warehouse the barrels used in the single malt were aged in – was muted – almost as if the fire had gone out.
The sparkle was missing – and I was a tad disappointed.
The Art Of The Blend 3 just blew it out of the water.
I let my palate choose.
It chose Art Of The Blend 3.
The Dreel Tavern is an attractive stone built gastropub sitting above the Dreel Burn that flows into the Firth Of Forth at the endearing ‘stepping stones’ area of Anstruther.
Popping in for a drink I spotted the local Fife based Kingsbarns Distillery‘s first release – Dream To Dram – and was keen to taste this Lowland Malt.
The nose was rather muted. Fresh soft subtle vanilla going on.
The palate started off gently too – before an exuberant spirity kick punched in.
Definitely youthful – perhaps too much so!
I’d have preferred a few more years in the cask.
There is pressure on new distilleries to show off their wares – and I commend Kingsbarns for releasing this fresh malt.
At the very least it allows fans the opportunity to try out the new spirit & see how it compares with future more aged releases.
I’m putting it in my ‘Work in Progress’ file.