As always happens at Whisky magazine’s tastings, there was a lot of discussion about the bottles lined up in front of the team. Much of the interest focused on the organic whisky from Benromach along with the Three Ships 10 year old. All the assembled pairs of eyes tended to skate over the other offerings and hone in on those two. The fascinating thing was hearing peoples’ opinions after the tasting had concluded.
Hughes had two important things to say: he pointed out that he is generally skeptical about the merits of organic anything “because there’s so much nonsense spoken about it all ‒ but the Benromach is a genuinely good example. It deserves to be singled out for special attention.”
And about the South African single malt, sneaky devil that he is, he often places it alongside other Scottish whiskies of identical or similar age in tastings. “I’ve put it up in tastings of 10 and 12 year olds ‒ blind tastings ‒ and never once have any of the very experienced tasters from Scotland ever said it’s not Scottish! It’s 100% South African ‒ and is really something to be proud of.”
The tasting panel comprised Whisky magazine staffers Publisher Shayne Dowling, Editor Fiona McDonald, Art Director Megan Knox, Digital Editor Marsh Middleton and regular contributor Clifford Roberts.
Guest taster this time around was engineer Greg Austin, a keen whisky drinker. His first association with the spirit began purely because there was nothing else to drink at a party. “People were amazed at how enthusiastically I took to it ‒ and just how much of it I managed to drink!” Austin is not locked into one favourite, preferring to experiment and taste a variety of whiskies. “This is a great way to experience and learn about new flavours.”
We created a little video to give you some peek at how we do things. It’s very basic, but we hope you enjoy it anyway.
If you want to look at the details and our tasting notes, follow this link: http://whiskymag.co.za/digital/2011/10/03/pick-mix-the-individual-whiskies/