For the next four weeks our resident whiskey pirate Gerald Jago will be tasting the experimental ‘Reference Series’ range and guest blogging about his findings. You can catch up with Part One here.
This week I am musing over I.1. For this variation one third of the base whisky has been taken and dumped in Oloroso sherry casks for one month. Here are the results:
I.1 Sherry The first variation on the base is a sweeter dram, as you may expect. The addition of sherry blends with the base to mask the strong grain nature of the whisky. The sherry combines with the apple sweetness of the base and gives an oily, boiled-sweet nose. The palate is more rounded with nuts and cake present; it really gives a lot to the whisky. The finish is where I notice the difference side by side with the original reference whisky! It lingers longer, with the cake turning fruity.
The sherry finish tempers the strong distillate flavour of the the base whisky. It introduces additional spice and fruit cake flavours. This isn’t exactly what you would expect one month in a sherry butt to do to a whisky. The lessons of this venture are showing already.
Next week I will be moving on to I.2, the peated edition.