So much whisky, so little time | Singapore | Tasting Notes

Whisky Butler June 2016 Box – Samaroli quartet

The Butler has chosen four expressions from Samaroli for this next round. Samaroli is of course the very storied independent bottler from Italy (in fact there are a number of bottlers that are Italian – it really tells you how popular whisky was in Italy some decades past). So here we have 2 Single Malts from Braeval, or otherwise known as ‘Braes’ or ‘Braes of Glenlivet’, so clearly a Speysider, and also from Jura, an Island whisky with a reputation for characterful whiskies. The other 2 expressions are Blended Malts – meaning they are blends of Single Malts, no grain whisky inside. One is a Blended Malt simply called Speyside, and must be the bottler’s interpretation of the Speyside style, and the other called Peaty, which makes it rather obvious what they were going after.

At this point, and having thought about it awhile now, I shall add a disclaimer to clarify the relationship between Whisky Butler and Whiskyrific: Whiskyrific does not profit or obtain a commercial benefit from the Whisky Butler business. The Butler’s business is the Butler’s himself, and I, Whiskyrific, have no part of it other than occasionally launching a barrage of half lunatic ideas and beating about his head with inane comments.


Braeval 1994/2015 Samaroli #165654 45%

Nose Nose: Sweet vanilla, creamy custard, quite pleasing, lots of wood action going on. Light biscuity maltiness. Some fuzzy fruitiness that’s very clean and hightoned. Yes rather light bodied malt whisky. Also quite straightfoward, nothing wrong with that.

Taste Palate: Initial hit of sweet oak and vanilla, and some white pepper, but reveals some feinty notes, more plain malt, table white and .. quite some fermented notes begin to show up. Interesting one.

Finish Finish: Medium, oxidised white wine.


Isle of Jura 1997/2013 Samaroli #9111/9112 45%

Nose Nose: Sandy, flinty and clearly more petrochemical in style next to the Bravel. Naked pear spirit. Feels a lot more complex than the Braeval! And in fact quite a highland style. White wine, flinty, grainy, vanilla essence and woody nuances. A touch raw which is delightful.

Taste Palate: Exactly as expected, only a few degrees sweeter, but no less chiselled and lean. Just a tad spirity if anything but it lends character here. Develops into something green and tangy  – boiled ‘Tang Or/Japanese Shungiku’ leaves.

Finish Finish: More of the same, great stuff, characterful.


Samaroli Speyside Blended Malt 1995/2015 45%

Nose Nose: It’s a familiar profile, very pleasing, very easy, very ‘high quality blend’. Its got cherries, vanilla, sponge cake sweetness, cream. Leather, also something a bit gristly-meaty and hints of mixed herbs. Not a smooth light blend, and not wiffly-waffly, it’s got a solid dense nose and straight up character, plus something that hints of backbone. Also something sour like tart starfruit.

Taste Palate: Exactly. You can feel the Mortlach/Benrinnes-like bossiness on the palate. More obvious malt on the tongue, and a few more characterful rough edges. A lot more charred gristly meaty-ness to it too. Good blended malt.

Finish Finish: Medium long, oak and residual red fruit, Oxalic acid tart.


Samaroli ‘S Peaty 1995/2014 45%

Nose Nose: No heavy peat. This one is closer to Highland Park than Laphroaig. Hmm.. . Gentle earthy rooty peat and just some smoke, sweet mixed fruit pastilles, lacquered wood, furniture creme of some sort. Tiny bit of cough syrup, and some tonic water? Actually very very drinkable. Well made.

Taste Palate: Exactly again. They really have the knack for doing this. Maybe a smidgen more smoke and a dash of seawater in the rear, but this is easy going, more sweet than peat,

Finish Finish: Medium long, wispy smoke, dried wood and some indistinct sweetness.



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This entry was posted on July 2, 2016 by in Braeval, Isle of Jura and tagged , , , , .
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