Second review from James Angus ! He is a chef in Warwickshire, and he is using an unapologetically chef language !
We have recently seen the Cask strength Massive go very moist for the recent Glen Moray release from Douglas Laing and there was a bit of moisture, maybe a semi when the Cider cask came out. Everyone went chicken oriental ! But I don’t think I’ve seen anyone shout about their standard NAS offerings. But why? The three that I’ve seen (normal, sherry and peated) are all under £22 and come from a good heritage and everyone needs an inexpensive daily dram. So the standard offerings should be ok and why doesn’t anyone speak about them? Potential snobbery? Whisky twat syndrome? Well change your perspective. So, the Glen Moray Sherry finish. Don’t buy this thinking of a Sherry bomb. Repeat. It’s not a SHERRY BOMB and if you buy it thinking that it is please return it to the point of purchase and exchange for vodka and piss off. It’s just not.
Think of it as a first introduction to whisky that has been matured in a sherry cask. A Fisher-price sherry finish whisky. Which is no bad thing and is genuinely meant as a positive. Some sherry cask whisky which I’ve had recently (Glenfarclas, Kavalan, Tamdhu? Glendronach and Highland Park first fills) can be as potent as the heaviest peated whisky and thoroughly kick your teeth in and strip your gums. Like anything specialist , you sometimes need a more gentle introduction. Bit like buying your first butt plug. You may want the one the size of a fire hydrant but the one the size of a thumb is a much safer option. Anyhow, if you want to get to know sherried whisky more, this is probably a good starting off point.
Colour. The colour suggests contact with sherry certainly but no idea if E150 has been added. It’s also not that dark so it wasn’t in contact for a long time. It’s a finish as opposed to full maturation. Just as a side note I’m not at all concerned about E150. Lots of people are but I’m not.
Smell. Well my sense of smell is still crap. However it is lighter than some I’ve had recently.
Taste. Nothing punches you in the face. Which I wasn’t expecting it to. It lacks the aggressive fruit cake flavours which you associate with a more heavily sherried whisky. As it’s a younger whisky you do get a bit of alcohol in that first sip. But the flavours are very gentle. More Bakewell slice as opposed to full iced and marzipan Christmas cake. For a sherry cask whisky it’s a bit light. But it’s easy to sip nothing offensive. Nothing major on the after taste which is short and sweet. Some have described it as thin which although true is a touch crude. You need to give it some perspective. It’s an £18 bottle of sherry cask finished whisky. IT WAS £18. Seriously ! Were you expecting a first fill 12yo maturation for an £18 scotch? If you were, return, buy vodka and piss off. I wasn’t expecting a Glenfarclas or a Tamdhu. They cost double or treble the amount without even trying.
What I was expecting was a decent, drinkable Scotch with sherried flavour which I can drink without worrying about the price and watch the rugby highlights as Leicester Tigers get seven shades of shit knocked out of then yet again. It does just that. If the basics can’t be done right then why would anyone look at the rest of the range. Basics done right. Put in the cupboard and enjoy it for what it is, not for what you want it to be.