A blend of distilled spirits news and commentary from around the web. In this edition: The wisdom of the Rum Guru, crafting in Colorado, Cask Master's on the rocks, and a battle without honor or humility. We miss you, Eren.
Feature: A Rum Guru's Wisdom
This will unblock your rum chakras. I'm not sure a more definitive or revealing expose of the secrets of distillation has ever been written. Originally posted on KLWine's Spirits Journal, this open letter from Bryan Davis (Lost Spirits Distillery) to David Driscoll (KLWines) comes across as impromptu but genuine. Posterity demands that I repost the entire tomb.
Everyone wants to talk about age, but in truth the barrel should only represent the final step that catalyzes a chain of chemical reactions and brings all the work together from each step of the spirit production process.
Nobody would ever accuse Lost Spirits Distillery of following the beaten path. To be honest, I was not the biggest fan of their Leviathan II or Ouroboros single malts (uniquely matured and American peated). This description of the process behind their navy style rum is forcing me to reconsider my initial conclusions.
I had this particular theory myself after hearing about Glenmorangie's latest Private Edition release. I must correct an error from my last Nosing the Net post where I said Cask Master's was intended to crowd source Glenmorangie's next private edition. It wasn't. Instead, it was intended to pick the next addition to the company's core lineup of ACE'd whiskies (next to Nectar D'or, Quinta Ruban, and the Lasanta). Taghta will join those ranks at a similar price. Interesting, then, to see the stone that the builders rejected make its way into this year's private edition at a much higher price point. I'll be sure to post my review on Companta in the "Drink" section soon.
The Age of Acquiring Us
No Age Statement (NAS) whisky: a battle without honor or humility. "No Age Statement Will Kill Us All." No it won't. Yes it will. It's a conspiracy. It's complicated. It's business. Don't act like you're not impressed. "What do I say? Yes, the 18 tastes 3 better than the 15?" Who cares? This whisky is 60 years old.
I was fortunate to have the opportunity to tour Breckenridge Distillery this week. There are good things going on there, including an outstanding bitters reminiscent of Drambuie and a single malt in the works. Colorado has a great thing going on here, and I'm excited to see what the future brings. Nobody could tell me whether they were experimenting with ACE'ing their bourbon though. How about it, Jordan?
One of my very first reviews on this blog was of Sons of Liberty's seasonal summer release, a craft hopped whiskey. Well, it seems Sons of Liberty's winter release (a pumpkin spiced whiskey) has just achieved the incredible honor of "Best Flavored Whisky" in Whisky Magazine's World Whisky Awards. Regardless of your feelings on flavored whisky, this is a huge win for a distillery I've followed and believed in from the beginning. Look for a review on the winter release (along with cocktail suggestions) in the "Drink" section soon.
Sullivan's Cove won "World's Best Single Malt" with their French Oak expression, which is instantly worth 10 times as much. I'm kicking myself for not buying a bottle when I had the chance. I did get a chance to taste the expression and speak to their master distiller back in January. Super nice guy.
I've never turned to whiskey for self-medication (nor would I ever recommend it), but 4 weeks on, I miss you, Eren.
Someone once asked me,
"Why do you drink so much coffee?"
and I fought the urge to say
if I didn’t drink coffee, it would be whiskey
Because it takes 8 cups of coffee a day
to get my mind racing fast enough
to skip over thoughts of you
But one bottle of whiskey
not only who you are,
but who I have been.
- Author Unknown