|This month's line up. With added beers.|
|Patrick von Zuidam jenever.|
As it happened, it was a Dutch jenever, a spirit that's a loose ancestor of gin popular in the low countries. From the Patrick von Zuidam distillery, it was a 5yo which cost £32 for a 50cl bottle. Our consensus in the end was that this was really nice if perhaps a bit on the sweet side, although maybe best enjoyed as a substitute for sherry. It's 38%.
|TBWC Zuidam 6yo.|
It turned out the connection was the distiller: this was a Dutch whisky from Zuidam, although bottled by club regulars That Boutique-y Whisky Company. A 6yo drink called Millstone, it takes its name from the windmills which are quite literally used to do the malted barley. Very nice although with a slightly bitter, liquoricey aftertaste, it's £55 again for a 50cl bottle, and comes in at 48.9%.
|Berry Bros 14yo Nicaraguan rum|
We didn't think it was a whisky and so it proved. In fact it was a rum, a 14yo single barrel Nicaraguan rum from none other than Berry, Bros and Rudd, again a club favourite bottler. Considering BBR's general output we weren't as thrilled about this as we might have been, although on the other hand, perhaps a room full of whisky monsters is never going to be too excited about a slightly more delicate rum. Having said that, it was better for having left it a bit. It's £56.
Not just any whisky, though, but a 19yo BenRiach. A limited edition affair at just 227 bottles and 50.8%, this drew surprisingly mixed views, surprising as BenRiach is a particular favourite of several club members. The main stumbling block was the £127 price tag, which put off even those who enjoyed the drink. One of the official tasting notes which seemed particularly on the button was Brazil nuts. Or at least that's how it tasted to me.
|Tesseron Lot 90 Cognac|
This discussion is probably still continuing somewhere (I've summarised it here somewhat for brevity). We were drinking a Tesseron Lot 90, costing £65 for a 40% drink. More experienced Cognac drinkers than I thought this was notably softly spoken as Cognacs go. Perhaps we might have enjoyed it more without the whisky all around it.
|Port Charlotte CC:01|
Sure enough it was an Islay whisky, on this occasion a Port Charlotte 2007 CC:01 from friends of the club Bruichladdich. This had its full maturation in Cognac, hence the pairing, and cost £75 at an ABV of 57%. We thought it was absolutely smashing. It's only available in the travel retail sector at the moment though, so it's one to keep an eye out for next time you're going through an airport with a half-decent whisky shop.
The dram of the night voting was an overwhelming victory for the Port Charlotte. But perhaps more interestingly, a second vote for spirit of the night ended up as a dead head between the jenever and the Cognac. I think some of us will be trying a few more of those in future.
Thanks to Matthew for selecting such a great and interesting group of drinks for us to try, to all club members old and new for attending, and to the Britons for once again hosting us.