Dalmore – shit whisky for idiots.

Think of a whisky snob.  For me it conjures up a stuffy, plummy voiced person, bespoke Saville row suit (more Gieves and Hawkes than Kilgour), lots of rules about how you have to do this or do that, they’d probably tell you that if you put ice in your whisky they’ll kill you. They’d probably do something stupid like throw whisky on the floor to “season the glass”. They’d be Robert Paterson. How is he not treated as the clown of whisky? The Ronald McDonald of Dalmore? He gave himself a nickname of “The nose” for God sake. What more does it take?!

Continue reading Dalmore – shit whisky for idiots.

Rob B’s 10 to 1 – Midlands Whisky Festival

Wherever my whisky life takes me, over land or sea or foam, the Midlands Whisky Festival will always hold a special place in my heart. Not only is it the first whisky festival I ever attended and the place where so much of my whisky education has taken place, but it also holds so many memories of good times and adventures with my friends. This year’s spring offering was arguably the best one yet, for many reasons, but mainly for a host of stunning drams at every turn. Below are my ten highlights, a list which took a lot of whittling down:

Continue reading Rob B’s 10 to 1 – Midlands Whisky Festival

Midlands Whisky Festival @ Stourbridge Town Hall – 18.03.17

It’s 2am on a Sunday morning.

I have no idea how I got home.

My head’s pounding and there’s a strange buzzer ringing throughout the house.

What the hell happened?

Continue reading Midlands Whisky Festival @ Stourbridge Town Hall – 18.03.17

Bushmills St. Patrick’s Day Tasting @ The Wellington, Birmingham – 16.03.17

We may both have red facial hair (and a slight penchant for alcohol), but neither Rob B or myself have an Irish bone in our body.
When it comes to St. Patrick’s Day though we thought it would be rude not to join in the festivities.

While being fairly inexperienced with Irish whiskey we were both aware of the current surge in interest and were looking forward to experiencing what the emerald isle had to offer. Continue reading Bushmills St. Patrick’s Day Tasting @ The Wellington, Birmingham – 16.03.17

Cask Strength or Weakness?

With whisky, as a general rule, I prefer higher ABVs.

I tend to find it imbues a richer character, more punch and an overall deeper experience.

With no other spirit is this necessarily true. Vodka, gin, rum and even cider do not usually taste better with a higher alcohol content. They become strong, spirity, and often-times bitter; you lose a lot of the flavour that the producers were no doubt trying to convey.

This can also be true with whisky and, despite my love for a high ABV, I don’t believe that high strength always equals high flavour/quality. Continue reading Cask Strength or Weakness?

Penderyn – Welsh Hit or Complete Shit?

Ah, Penderyn.

Among my (whisky-informed) friends the name is almost a curse word.

“Welsh whisky!?”
“You mean Irish?”
“Keep that piss away from me”

That’s usually how the conversation will go anytime someone brings up the Welsh distillery.

So in light of it being St. David’s day last week I decided the time was right to bring out a 5 dram tasting set gifted to me by my missus’ brother for my birthday last year.

Continue reading Penderyn – Welsh Hit or Complete Shit?

Rob B’s 10 to 1 – Whisky Birmingham

Whisky Birmingham: the first big whisky event in my calendar this year. Despite drinking whisky for a few years now, last year was my first time at Whisky Birmingham. Not only did I love it enough to return this year (despite being “hungover as fuck”, as Tomasz reminded me on Saturday), but it also convinced my to join The Birmingham Whisky Club and take whisky a lot more seriously. Needless to say, I had another great time this year. So, obligatory waffle over; here are my top ten highlights of this year’s festival: Continue reading Rob B’s 10 to 1 – Whisky Birmingham