Ancnoc #LightOnDark tweet tasting
Ancnoc have recently released a set of peated expressions, a step away from their normal profile, but change and variation is a good, no, excellent thing.
For these releases we have 3 NAS (not getting into the NAS row – not yet anyway!) expressions all named after various peat cutting tools of which I had no knowledge until now, so excellent learning opportunity here also! :-).
The peating levels of each expression are part of their labelling along with the magic statements. Non-chill Filtered. Natural colouring. Lovely stuff!
Peating level – 11ppm
£51.00 at TheGreenWellyStop
The Rutter spade is used to size and separate the peat blocks producing a turf that is slow burning. This peat creates less reek and therefore gives the whisky a more fragrant smokiness, in this case, with a PPM of 11.0.
Light medicinal peat. Earthy. Moss. Wet grass. Spicy vanilla pods. Green apple. Light pepper. Some floral. A little wet wood. With time more sweetness and floral notes come forward and the peat smoke becomes less medicinal or ‘in your face’ and balances into the nasal crowd. More citrus notes now, and becoming creamier. More custardy. There’s a certain meatiness to the nose now. Very complex and whiffable.
Very sweet and light initially. Development goes on to Creamed hay, light apple juice, pepper spice. Quite moreish and chewy. Some nice honey, barley sugar notes, with a little peat fire in the back of the throat. More time and more buttery cream. Like a dairy with a peat fire!
Juicy fruits, crisp apples and pears. Drying oak and vanilla spices.
Small drop added. The nose is less peat focused. The palate while lighter on initial taste, is juicier through the development, and intensifies the peat fire on the tongue. With the juicier nature going into the very very tasty finish, definitely moreish. Lovely stuff.
This is very easy, summery stuff. Complex nose, Very tasty palate, and excellent on the finish with a drop of water.
Peating level – 14.8ppm
£51.00 at TheGreenWellyStop
The Flaughter spade is used to remove the top layer of peat which is richer, more rooty and produces more reek. This gives a heavier, smokier flavour to the whisky, in this case, with a PPM of 14.8.
Light floral. Lots of honey. Soft and sweet smoke. Waxy apples, pears, green fruit, a little varnish. The nose is very rich and fulfilling. Doesn’t smell like 46%. Considering the slightly higher ppm, it doesn’t have as much reek to my nose. It is very very pleasant and warming. With time in the glass we have more fruit jelly notes, and some confectionary.
Very sweet and dry. Some tastier fruit notes, bitter lemon. Lots of thick but dry honey. Peat stack fires are more prominent in the palate than on the nose. Some vanilla custard notes. A little bit of aniseed end development. Quite spicy, some ginger and chilli notes.
That aniseed/liquorice note continues into the finish. Sweet peat, hay, dry oak, crusty earthy notes. Dusty dirt. Some serious spiciness as well, quite different.
Small drop. On the nose. The smoke is a little more out there now. The fruit has taken a slight back step. On the palate, the fruit and sweetness is still right up front, the peat stack is burning slightly hotter, some more juices there, but still quite a dryness present all the way through the experience. The finish is dry, oaky, some spices, but a little more vanilla Creme (Twinkie like) at the end.
Peating level – 15ppm
Swedish Travel Exclusive
The Tushkar spade has a long blade that cuts down through the peat, producing a turf with a medium to slow burn. This peat creates and adds a complex but medium smokiness to the whisky, in this case, with a PPM of 15.0.
Intensely fruity, lots of green apples up front, sweet, intense honey, thick and richness exudes this nose. Coconut milk. There’s a sweet shop going on here that can be extracted as well. Cola cubes, pineapple cubes, pear drops, sherbert pips. The smoke is very well integrated and almost quiet, but it is there.
In a word. Fulfilling. So much fruit and juice, with rich sugars and thick honey. Sweet shop sweets in abundance. Fruit. Apples, pears, some orange juice in there. A real fruit mix explosion. Very well integrated peat, it’s no peat monster, it just has enough smoke to enrich the fruit and make the whole experience.
Fruit juices drying out into lovely oaky spiciness and some green grass and just a touch of smoke.
A small drop. The diluted nose has more sugary dust, confectionary. Lemon citrus and floral notes. The palate reflects this in a very juicy manner, flavours joust coating and exploding, so citrusy and fruity, it’s really lush. Still a little peat wafting around which is very pleasing. The diluted finish continues that enhanced juicy feel. Excellent.
Well, there was something for everyone here tonight. Something for people who like sweet juicy drams (Rutter), something for if you prefer the drier dram (Flaughter), and something for Sweden (Tushkar).
For me. If they were all available in the UK, then I would be seriously torn between Rutter and Tushkar. And end up getting one of both. But as I would have to choose just one, I would go with Rutter. Don’t get me wrong mind you, all of them are bloody lovely. It’s just my tastes that sends me that way.
I’m going through a serious juicy Whisky phase at the moment, and Rutter and Tushkar hit me well and truly on the flavour spot!
Much Thanks to Ancnoc (Knockdhu distillery) for providing the samples and running the tweet taste.