Be brave!

When the moment came to choose what to test today, I felt brave and decided to grab two samples I tried to hide for a long time. I’m really not a fan of wine cask maturation (to say the least!) but when I started in the whisky world I didn’t knew about it. So let’s be brave and try those!
Well, what if I start with something more conventional from Bruichladdich?

Bruichladdich 22yo 1992-2014 (50.7%, OB, Laddie crew valinch 09 – J. McColl, PX sherry cask, cask #R10/130-11, 880 bottles)

Colour: Brown sherry.
Nose: Orange peels, peaches, leather, grapes and some hints of tannins. It’s quite good.
Mouth: The alcohol integration is not really good. Leather, tobacco, honey, oranges and raisins but the alcohol and some sweetness are over present in my opinion.
Finish: Mainly oranges and leather. The alcohol and the sweetness are still way too much present and cover the other aromas.

This one is quite good but the bad alcohol integration and the over presence of sweetness kill it.

Score: 87

Bruichladdich 8yo 2009-2018 (63.6%, Svenska Eldvatten, Fresh Petrus wine hogshead, cask #3690, 286 bottles)

Colour: Brown sherry.
Nose: The alcohol is very present again. Straw, spices, leather tobacco, dust and wine, a lot of wine! There are also some dryness and some farmy notes on the background.
Mouth: It’s oily. The alcohol and some red wine are over present, followed by some red grapes and an intense dryness.
Finish: Long. Grapes mainly, it’s astringent and dry.

The alcohol and the winy notes are just overwhelming compared to the rest, really not my cup of tea.

Score: 80

Port Charlotte 6yo 2007-2014 (62.9%, OB « Palaemon », French Oak of Vosne-Romanée, cask #007, 298 bottles)

Colour: Brown sherry.
Nose: The alcohol is present but not too much this time! It starts with hints of salt and iodine directly followed by some heavy and very sweet winy notes. That’s really disturbing. Then come some peat and honey. It starts to turn my stomach, I’m having some doubts about tasting it…
Mouth: After remembering to myself that the title of the article is « Be brave! » I managed to taste it!
A lot of alcohol, a lot of wine and a lot of sugar… who the heck stole the whisky?
At the end of the mouth some gentle peat and leathery notes appears briefly. It’s really not good, turning my stomach even more and guess what?
Finish: Yeah you got it, the finish is just very very long. There are red berries briefly at start then some hints of peat drowned in a sweet red wine river.
Did I say the finish lasts forever?

Well, I’m not sure that more comments are really necessary. I’m really not a fan of those winy notes in whiskies and this once pushed the boundaries of the sweet wine notes even further. It’s definitely the worst whisky I have tasted as of now!
PS : This finish will never end… Let’s get something that should be more classic maybe.

Score: 60

Port Charlotte 14yo 2004-2018 (58.9%, Private SC bottling, Sherry Hogshead, cask #1218, 264 bottles)

Colour: Brown sherry.
Nose: Smoked meat, gentle peat, orange peels, leather, tobacco and ashes with some salt and iodine in the background. No sweetness, no wine, no alcohol, I’m reviving!
Mouth: The alcohol integration is quite good, it’s round but not sweet. Smoked meat, leather, oranges and old books.
Finish: It’s long. Candied oranges, dusty leather, wood ashes and even some dryness.

This one is not complex at all but does the job pretty well. It even makes me forget a little bit about the last one.

Score: 88

If I had some doubts, now I totally know that winy profile are not for me in most cases. However, I understand what could be enjoyable in those profiles for some but it’s definitely too original for me most of the times. No more bravery for now, thanks.

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