Monday Morning Tasting QB February 27: The Wild World of Whiskies, tasting with Karl DuHoffmann

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This was a great tasting which Karl handled brilliantly! My favorite all around was the Chieftain’s Braeval 14 year old. I took home a bottle and it takes a lot for me to bring home a bottle of any spirit because it lasts me so long. i guess I should share more. Anyway we hope to have Karl do more of these educational spirit events real soon. Here is the line up with my impressions of each. BTW, Karl left the bottles so if you are curious to taste please stop by for a wee dram, any time. As you can see it was very well attended.

About Karl: Karl duHoffmann brings 20 yrs of experience in the food and beverage industry with  to bear when speaking on distilled beverages. A passionate advocate for the diversity to be found amongst the great spirits of the world, Karl is a dynamic educator who challenges received wisdom and brings a fun informative presence to the classroom. Karl leads professional spirit education seminars and we are fortunate to have him for absolutely no charge except an open mind and an interest in whiskies.

Breckenridge Distillery Bourbon Whiskey Colorado 86 Proof
My Tasting Notes: My kind of bourbon, lots of carmel and toffee but not too heavy or sweet. It has lots of grainy malty nose with hints of spice, wood, orange rinds
“This unique mash bill features corn, malted barley and nearly 40% rye. Made using traditional, open-top Scottish style fermentation, it was aged in 55 gallon, Char No. 3, Missouri white oak barrels for three years….” -The Distillery

Balcones Distilling Brimstone Texas Smoked Corn Whisky 106 Proof
My Tasting Notes: A bit much for me but some were mesmerized by its bold flavors. To me it had a very oily petroleum nose with flavors of barbecue wood smoke. The corn gives it a sweet undercurrent and it is really hard to get the taste out of your mouth.
“Made from 100% blue corn, this whiskey is smoked using Texas scrub oak rather than traditional Scottish peat… Chip Tate continues to assert his leadership of the craft distiller movement in Texas.” -The Distillery

Isle of Skye 8 Year Old Blended Scotch Whisky 86 Proof
My Tasting Notes: A lovely all-round weekday scotch and a steal for about $30 a fifth!  Very malty and mellow with a nice smooth finish
“Premium quality 8 Years Old Blend…An exceptionally smooth and mellow Scotch whisky containing a high proportion of carefully selected Island and Speyside Malts. Honey/vanilla sweet Speyside flavour allied to smoky/peaty Island influences to give a well balanced distinctive blend.” -The Distillery

Kilchoman Spring 2011 Release Single Malt Scotch 92 Proof 
My Tasting Notes:  Has fairly peaty notes with a good deal of band aid, and wood smoke notes with a soft round finish in which some candied fruit and toffee notes kick in. The peat is pronounced and gives the whisky a lovely listerine accent that leaves your lips buzzing afterwords
89 Points – Whisky Advocate, July 2011
“A marriage of three and four year old whisky aged in first-fill bourbon barrels, with the four year old portion being finished in oloroso sherry casks. Among the best of the Kilchoman releases to date. The first-fill bourbon packs a flavor punch, while the sherry softens, rounds, and adds complexity. Barrel char, burnt raisin, boat dock, and tarry rope, softened by caramel and enhanced with notes of tropical fruit. Surprisingly mature for its age and very distinctive.” -John Hansell
Chieftain’s Braeval 1996 14 Year Old Limited Edition 92 Proof
My Tasting Notes: Speyside Single Malt Scotch nose shows some wool, malt and faint note of peat  on the palate it shows nice round apple, sherry, peat and sweetened cooked barley tastes the finish shows licorice and menthol.
“Established in Scotland in 1933, Ian Macleod Distillers was named after the chieftain of Clan Macleod. Privately owned and operated by the Russell family, they’ve amassed an extensive and enviable collection of casks from Scotland’s finest distilleries. Each cask is hand selected and signed by the Chieftain’s Rare Malt Manager…These whiskeys are very limited and only offered twice a year.” -The Importer

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