Thursday, July 16, 2015

Dalmore and Jura Single Malt Scotch Seminar Review

This was yet another outstanding and free whisky tasting at Gordon's in Waltham, Massachusetts.

The presenter was a gentleman named Ralph, who seemed pretty new at the whole brand ambassador gig and kept pronouncing "Islay" as "eye-lay" instead of the correct "eye-luh." So that was annoying.

Both Dalmore and Jura are owned by the same company, Whyte & Mackay, which explains why one dude was representing two brands. Dalmore is a Highland distillery, known for their rich, sherried whiskies, as well as their ridiculously expensive luxury line extensions. Jura Distillery is on the Isle of Jura, an island off the southwest coast of Scotland, between the mainland and Islay.

Here are my brief tasting notes from the event:

Dalmore 15 Year (40% ABV, 12 years in bourbon casks and 3 years in sherry casks): Nose is nice sherry. Palate is ripe fruit, old wood. Water makes it even woodier. Overall rating: 88.

Dalmore Cigar Malt (44% ABV, 12 years in bourbon casks, 2.5 years in sherry casks and 1.5 years in cabernet sauvignon casks): Nose is plump, juicy fruits, like plum. Palate is nice, typical sherry spice. Overall rating: 89.

Dalmore 18 Year (43% ABV, 14 years in bourbon casks, 4 years in sherry): Nose is full, silky, sexy sherry, with deep, ripe fruit. Palate is again some sexy sherry that continues into the finish. Overall rating: 93.

Dalmore Daniel Boulud (44% ABV, up to 23 years in bourbon casks and then married with whiskies aged in muscatel, madeira, and port wine casks): Nose is lighter fruit, palate is bourbon with late sherry. The finish is bourbon plus sherry. Not really a fan...mostly tastes like bourbon for some reason. Overall rating: 82.

Jura 10 Year (43% ABV, bourbon casks): Oak, honey, young fruit, a bit fiery. Hint of peat on the finish. Overall rating: 85.

Jura 16 Year (43% ABV, 14 years in bourbon casks and 2 years in sherry casks): Nose is super juicy fruits. Really nice leather and tobacco on the palate. It feels like I'm drinking suede. Bit of peat in there too. Reminds me of a Highland Park 12 but with less peat. Overall rating: 92.

Jura Superstition (43% ABV, 12 years in bourbon casks, 1-2 years in sherry casks, peated at 30-35 ppm): The nose is tar. On the palate, gritty peat. This reminds me a bit of the Springbank 15. The finish is nice deep, dark peat. It has a leathery but soft, lingering finish. Overall rating: 88.

Jura Prophecy (46% ABV, 14-18 years in bourbon casks, 2-3 years in sherry casks, non-chillfiltered, peated at 45 ppm): Nose is band-aids. The palate has nice peat, with a lighter feeling and better harmony than the Superstition. Reminds me of the Ardbeg Uigeadail. The finish is sweet peat. A little too much of a brute for my palate. Overall rating: 87.

Jura Brooklyn (42% ABV, up to 16 years in bourbon and sherry casks, then 1.5 years in pinot noir casks): Nose is very nice fruit and smoke. The palate is smooth fruit and soot with a lingering finish. Overall rating: 90.

While I enjoyed the Dalmore 18 the most, my favorite discovery of the night was the Jura 16.

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