Аромат – силен, някак плътен, но доста приятен /въпреки че течността бе 57%/, тъмни плодове, като сини сливи и грозде, слаби кайсии, но сушени, солидна доза карамел, силно пикантен, канела, печен плодов сладкиш с ягоди и ягодово сладко /докато пиша започвам да го визуализирам и да се облизвам лакомо/, локум. С вода /при този градус е силно препоръчително да го разредите с няколко капки/ – дървесност, още по-плодов, пияни вишни или шоколад, съдържащ вишни/череши, киснати в алкохол. Вкус /с вода – без вода е доста силно и може да парализира временно рецепторите ви/ – сладост, пикантен /доста пиперлив с нотка джинджифил/, солидно маслен, плътен, веднага устата ми започна да се пълни със слюнка, ментова хлад по езика, мимолетна горчивина, която се замения от сладката нотка. При втората и трета глътка, добавяйки още вода, горчивината се засили и я асоциирах с кайсиеви ядки. Финал /с вода/ – среден до дълъг, силно плодов, грозде, сушени фурми, маслен, сушени плодове /сушени сини сливи и сладко от сини сливи/, спомен за зелена подправка, спомен за бърбън и нещо, което ме изненада – нотка, която ми напомни на ръжта, която срещам при ръжените уискита.
П.С. Редакция към февруари 2016г: Максиъм България внесоха бутилки от Вино Барик, които вървят за около 200 лв, но не знам докога ще са налични.
Kavalan Solist Vinho Barrique single malt whisky
It’s time to pamper ourselves by virtual walk to an exotic and unknown to me country – Taiwan. What are we going to do there? I suggest you to enjoy the world’s best single malt whisky. „Ok, but why would we drink Scotch whisky in Taiwan?“ – someone may wonder. And here comes the answer – because two months ago, this whisky in the photo was named world’s best single malt whisky for 2015. Who, why and was it really that good? I’ll try to answer in the following lines.
First, let me note that the liquid is not yet officially imported in Bulgaria. The friends from Maxxium Bulgaria are engaged to pamper us with such goodies, but because of the limited production and the fact that we are still weak market for some malt products, the batches of this beauty are distributed to the stronger markets in the West. I keep my fingers crossed to see this bottle in their portfolio anytime soon. How did I find it? I surely haven’t been to Taiwan. Recently I met Vladi Nikolov from Maxxium, who owns the bottle in the photo, and he offered me a sample of it, to assure myself in the qualities of the liquid. Did I accept it – of course I did! Christmas is still far away, but here I was able to dip my lips into this ruby liquid. And before I move to the next line, I want to thank Vladi and wish him soon to surprise us with those bottles as part of their product range.
I’ve already wrote about the history of Taiwan’s King Car Distillery and you can find plenty of it by using the search engine, which will take you to a strange and magical place – the homepage of the blog with links to the individual articles.
Who and how selected this whisky for the best in the world? You can find more details on the World Whiskies Awards website. In summary – each year participants declare their desire to participate in this prestigious competition, during which being conducted a „blind tasting“ /i.e. not knowing the brand of the tasted whiskies/, at which a jury of eminent journalists from that sphere, bartenders, traders, master distillers and whisky experts taste the specified drinks in several rounds and evaluate them according to predefined criteria. Similar to the qualifying groups in the football tournaments – among the first being selected the best that to continue forward, then the procedure being repeated until find the exact distillate. Of course, the drinks are grouped by type and origin, without any possibility of bourbon or blended whisky to compete with malt whisky. As a result of this procedure, the jury determines the winner. This year’s winner is Kavalan Solist Vinho Barrique single malt whisky, which in addition to the stock shortages will inevitably lead to speculation with the price /before the award, its price in most western websites was around 100 Euros, pounds/.
What makes it different? First, the distillates from the Kavalan Solist series are cask-strength products, with natural colour and non chill-filtered. They have no age statement, but bearing in mind when the distillery was established, I think this whisky is about 6-7, or maybe 8-year old, which can be considered adulthood, having in mind the climatic characteristics and the significantly faster process of whisky aging, compared to that in Scotland. The other distillates of the Solist series being matured in sherry casks or bourbon barrels. Here maturation takes place entirely in Barrique wine barrels, which are made from American oak and some of them are additionally charred in order to unleash more vanilla notes.
How did it seem to me?
Aroma – strong, slightly dense, but very pleasant /although the liquid was with an alcohol content of 57%/, dark fruits like prunes and grapes, light apricots, but dried, a big dose of caramel, strongly spicy, cinnamon, a baked fruit cake with strawberries and strawberry jam, Turkish delight. With water /having in mind the high alcohol content, the addition of a few drops of water is highly recommended/ – woodiness, more fruits, drunken cherries or chocolate with sour cherries/ sweet cherries, soaked in alcohol. Taste /with water – without added water it is very strong and could temporarily paralyze your receptors/ – sweetness, spicy /very peppery with a hint of ginger/, very buttery, dense, my mouth immediately started filling with saliva, menthol coolness on the tongue, fleeting bitterness, replaced by a sweet note. In the second and third sip, I added more water and the bitterness became stronger, as I associated it with apricot kernels. Finish /with water/ – medium to long, strongly fruity, grapes, dried dates, buttery, dried fruits /dried prunes and prune jam/, a hint of green spices, a memory of bourbon, and something that surprised me – a note, which reminded me of the rye, which I find in the rye whiskies.
In summary: a delicious fruity whisky, in which sweetness, spiciness and fruits fight for dominance. I would try it again /it is at a reasonable price/. Is it the best in the world? For me – definitely not, but it is very tasty and worth attention.