Whisky Review #7 – Laphroaig Cairdeas (2014)


Intro – Laphroaig Cairdeas is a yearly offering from Laphroaig for the Friends of Laphroaig. This is the 2014 edition. Bottled at 51.4% ABV (the last two digits let you know the year it was bottled). 8 year old Laphroaig which is then finished in Amontillado seasoned hogsheads. I think I paid $65-$70.

****Disclaimer…Laphroaig is my favorite distillery and usually they can do no wrong in my eyes****

Nose – Strong Laphroaig character up front (peat and smoke), underlying sweetness behind the peat and smoke, new tennis shoes, rubber and bacon, sweetened cigars, slightly  floral, dusty smoke. Letting it sit for 15 minutes really allows to fruitiness to come to the forefront and pushes the smoke to the background.

Taste – light sweet fruits…sweet smoke up front which turns into strong peaty smoke, dry towards the middle, quickly turning to ash

Finish – medium finish, shorter then most of the Laphroaigs I have had. ash and ash. Finish is slightly one dimensional to me.

Favorite Part – The Nose. (This is rare that I would enjoy the Nose of a Laphroaig more then the Taste.

Conclusion – I purchased this after buying the 2013 Cairdeas which I think is much better. I am glad I got the 2014 but I don’t think I would try to get another bottle. The nose is great and the taste is respectable for a Laphroaig. It sticks to the Laphroaig DNA but the finish is quite boring for a Laphroaig. The 2013 & 2015 and both better expressions.

Rating – 83/100

  • Presentation – 5/5
  • Nose – 23/25
  • Taste – 31/35
  • Finish – 17/25
  • Value – 7/10

Whisky Review #6 – Glenmorangie 10 (The Original)


Intro –

Glenmorangie is one of those single malts you see at most liquor stores. Usually it’s right beside Glenlivet and Glenfiddich. I have tried those other 2 “Glen’s” and I have to say they can’t hold a candle to Glenmorangie. This is the base offering from Glenmorangie. The 10 year old “Original”. Bottled at 43% – Nothing stated about chill filtering and coloring so I have to say they do both. I bought this in a package deal (I want to say it was like $30) with a sampler pack which contained their other finished expressions (LaSanta, Quinta Ruban, and Nectar D’or).


Nose – Holy fruity Batman! Peaches, apricots, light Rye note, fruity hand soap (but in a good way), I’m really getting Rye notes for some reason – dill and rye. soft, fruity nose that is very easy to smell.

Taste – Spice, light fruit, peaches hit first but quickly fade away….hardly as fruity as the nose, bourbon casks really come out…vanilla and oak with light caramel. orange and vanilla woodiness, nothing outstanding but very easy to drink.

Finish – short finish, easy going finish…with a slight bourbon/wood note at the end.

Favorite Part – The Nose.

Conclusion –

I consider Glenmorangie 10 (The Original) to be a great starter single malt. It is priced well and delivers a great experience. The nose is great with the taste and finish doing just enough. I think Glenmorangie really takes pride in their offerings. I don’t have any of those other expressions left but I remember enjoying them all with the Quinta Ruban leading the way as my favorite. I highly recommend The Original.

Rating – 76/100

  • Presentation – 3/5
  • Nose – 22/25
  • Taste – 25/35
  • Finish – 17/25
  • Value – 9/10



Whisky Review #5 – The Glenrothes – Select Reserve


Intro –

My older sister gave me a sampler pack of The Glenrothes for Christmas in 2014. It was a three pack which contained this Select Reserve, the 2001 and 1998. I finished the 2001 & 1998 so I figured I would review the Select Reserve before it was gone. 40% ABV – probably colored and chill filtered. Who knows how old it is and since they won’t tell us… I’ll just say it’s at least 3 years old. 🙂

****Tasted neat on 2/23/16. Paid $0.00 (gift)****

Nose – Vanilla, cooked apples, cooked apples with sugar dumped on top, pencil eraser, not as alcohol forward as I remember it, floral and apple, apples on top of a pile of garbage or apples on top of dirty diapers…I must need to move onto the taste. ***after sitting awhile I noticed peaches and cream***

Taste – alcohol burn, nose doesn’t translate over to the taste, not much there. I don’t taste much of anything. The nose promises a lot (besides the garbage and dirty diapers) but doesn’t deliver anything on the taste. I can’t really complain about the taste…because there is nothing there.

Finish – short to nonexistent, boring…nothing gross about it but really nothing there. No flavor at all.

Favorite Part – The Nose.

Conclusion – The only thing I can think of is that this little 100ml bottle wasn’t sealed well over the past year and air killed it. I remember liking the 2001 & 1998 a lot more but I also remember the Select Reserve having at least a little flavor. Select Reserve…meet my kitchen drain.

Rating – 33/100

  • Presentation – 1/5
  • Nose – 16/25
  • Taste – 10/35
  • Finish – 5/25
  • Value – 1/10




Whisky Review #4 – Tobermory 10


Intro –

Tobermory Distillery is from the Isle of Mull. This is their standard base offering. I picked it up after a reading good reviews and because of the craft presentation. 46.3% ABV, Un-Chill Filtered and Natural Color. All stated on very nice packaging. Reviews of this single malt having an “odd” flavor also caused me to seek it out.

****Tasted neat on 11/27/15 from a smaller bottle decanted from the original bottle. Paid $40. Notes taken from my Whisky Journal.****

Nose – apples, basketball rubber, light wood and small amount of peat. Odd “Tobermory” character which has mellowed out with time in the bottle. Easy to nose.  Reminds me of Old Pulteney 12 with a mix of sweet and sour.

Taste – wood, spices, sweet/odd Tobermory taste, apple, apple juice with sugar dumped into it, letting it sit increases the sweetness but mellows out the Tobermory Funk. Easy to sip with no alcohol burn. Very interesting and engaging, it really makes you slow down and think.

Finish – Short finish, dry, wood, begins slighty sweet with a woody ending, nice finish with no off putting notes.

Favorite Part – The Nose.

Conclusion – I remember when I first opened this bottle I had really high expectations and it did not disappoint. I knew going in that it would be a challenge and be unique. If you want something different this bottle does not disappoint. That being said this bottle was very up and down for me. One day I would love it and want to go buy another bottle and the next day I’d pour my glass down the drain. For that reason I will probably not buy another bottle. I may look into their 15 year old someday but I doubt it because of the price.

Rating – 66/100

  • Presentation – 5/5
  • Nose – 18/25
  • Taste – 20/35
  • Finish – 17/25
  • Value – 6/10




Whisky Review #3 – Talisker 10

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Intro –

This was my first whisky from Talsiker and it hopefully will not be my last. Talisker is from the Isle of Skye and from what I have read is smokey but a different kind of smoke/peat when compared to the typical Islay whiskies. 45.8% ABV – Paid $47 – Since it is from Diaego and it doesn’t say it on the bottle I’m calling it chill filtered and artificially colored.

****Notes were take from my Whisky Journal – Tasted Neat on 10/15/15 – taken from a small bottle which I had decanted from the original bottle.****

Nose –

Briny, salty pepper, very individual smoke, sweet cigarette smoke, apple and pepper rubbed over a charred piece of wood.

****My 7 year old daughter said “Smokey & Fruity”****

Taste –

Pepper, band-aids (cheap weak smelling band-aids), not Islay medicinal or smokey, Highland Park kind of smoke flavor to me,  easy to drink even with a higher ABV

Finish –

Pepper, short to medium finish which is not too peaty.

Favorite Part – The Taste.

Conclusion –

During this tasting I wrote…”I used to love it but after being away from it I lost the desire. I guess that means it is hit and miss for me.” Since that tasting I have had it a few times and have enjoyed it. Thinking back on it now I would say this is a solid whisky which I would buy again. Rumors have said that low stocks may cause it to be discontinued in the future. Grab a bottle while you can.

Rating – 80/100

  • Presentation – 3/5
  • Nose – 21/25
  • Taste -29/35
  • Finish – 20/25
  • Value – 7/10



Whisky Review #2 – Jura 10 (Origin)


Intro –

I picked this up on a whim because I’ve never had a whisky from The Jura Distillery. I have read that the 16 year old (Diurachs’ Own) is much better but I wanted to try the 10 year old. I had read that Jura has a unique character (which is what I look for in whisky) but also that its character is not all that good. I only paid about $35 so I thought I’d give it a try. From what I have read the Origin is not peated. They have some other Non Age Statement whiskies that are peated.

****Tasted Neat on 02/19/16 while listening to Sinatra****

Nose – Honey, slight rubber, apples, very light nose, small amount of vanilla that gets overtaken by the honey note, there is a nice note underneath that sweet honey that is keeping me interested…maybe honeyed pencil shavings. Old wood benches in a sweaty locker room. Vacuuming up sawdust off a dirty garage floor. Sort of dusty. Very easy to nose…I don’t get any alcohol burn. middle of the road…nothing great or horrible on the nose. I can only assume this odd note I am smelling under the honey is the signature Jura character. If that is true that interests me because I don’t hate it.

Taste – Honey on the arrival, turns into bitter wood, slight alcohol burn but still easy to sip, the honey tries to fight but falls away quickly

Finish – Dusty wood shavings,rubber toward the end and not a good rubber. slight apple and honey to the back end of the finish but overtaken by a rubber/woody note. Like the nose and taste it’s very simple…I keep waiting for more but nothing happens.

Favorite Part – The Nose.

Conclusion – I think my overall experience with the Jura 10 was positive. It’s not horrible, I have had better and worse. It’s very interesting and it made me want to sit with it longer to try to pick out more notes.

Rating – 63/100

  • Presentation – 2/5
  • Nose – 21/25
  • Taste – 20/35
  • Finish – 15/25
  • Value – 5/10




Whisky Review #1 – Ledaig 10


Intro – 

This 10 year old is a peated whisky from the Tobermory distillery. I bought it in January 2015 for $45 –  46.3% ABV, Un-Chill Filtered and Natural Color. Very light in color. Nice classic packaging. It was one of the first peated whiskies I tried that was not from Islay.

****Notes were take from my Whisky Journal – Tasted Neat on 10/7/15 – with only about 1/4 of bottle remaining****

Nose – Pear, apple, fruity, odd Tobermory “funky” style, easy to nose….no harsh alcohol burn, pepper…pepper stuck to a band-aid, over-ripe/rotting apples laying outside in the grass, vegetal – Laphroaig like with apples mixed in.

Taste – peat, pepper, sweet up front and then sour, funky Tobermory style, peat fads quickly for me…this may be the low level in the bottle. I remember enjoying this a lot more when I first opened it maybe because I loved the strong peat so much. It is a hit or miss expression for me…sometimes it really hits the spot and other times I could dump it because I have to be in the mood for that funky Tobermory style. Didn’t note much on the fruity side of the taste or I couldn’t get past the peat when I tasted it.

Finish – Woody, pepper, limited peat, short to short/medium finish.

Favorite Part – The Nose.

Conclusion – I really do like the presentation of this whisky, 46.3%, un-chill filtered and natural color. It wasn’t too expressive and I recall drinking it faster then most bottles I have owned. That being said I don’t think I would buy another bottle. I can get my peat fix from another distillery.

Rating  – 74/100

  • Presentation – 5/5
  • Nose – 20/25
  • Taste – 25/35
  • Finish – 18/25
  • Value – 6/10