September 2017 - World Whisky

This month's Spirits feature is World Whisky
World Whisky Reviews
220132
Kavalan
Solist Port Single Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky
Dark mahogany color. Aromas and flavors of dried fruit melange, chocolate genache, port wine and ripe black cherries, and salted peanuts with a round, lively, fruity full body and a peppery, very complex, very long charred sweet corn, cinnamon, clove, black pepper, wassail, preserved hibiscus, rose jam, winter orange peel, and anise and soy sauce finish. An exemplary study in cask finished whiskey; superb depth, complexity, length and soul.
98 points $299.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220129
Kavalan
Distillery Reserve Single Malt Whisky Peaty Cask
Pale mahogany color. Candied aromas of cafe latte and fine tobacco, cocoa nib and wet tropical leaves, butterscotch chips, and scotch oatmeal cookie with a slightly chewy, vibrant, fat body and a peppery, very complex, endless gingerbread and graham cracker with molasses, almond croissant with brown sugar glaze, dried figs and aromatic bitters, and ripe red cherries with rose petals finish. A stellar, rich and chewy whiskey for endless contemplation.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220123
Kavalan
Solist ex-Bourbon Single Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky
Dark golden amber color. Nutty aromas and flavors of rack house, toasted marshmallow, sherry, and doctor pepper and hint of brine with a satiny, lively, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a peppery, complex, long butterscotch and sweet potato pie, toasted almond and coconut flakes, orange rind and pickling spices, and tamarind chutney finish. Incredible balance and acidity combine with heartwarming flavors to create a whisky that is at once familiar and exotic; attention commanding.
97 points $159.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220883
Midleton
Dair Ghaelach Single Pot Still Irish Whiskey
Medium amber color. Complex aromas of vanilla-almond and dandelion, lime leaf, blackberry and currant, men’s cologne, and pottery with a glycerous, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity full body and a peppery, massive, endless butterscotch drenched cherries and cola, fresh new Orleans praline and resin, spearmint, baby’s breath and tobacco leaf, allspice, and clove and nutmeg-kissed pastry finish. A gentleman’s club of a dram dripping with mystery, richness, and a perfect balance of power and grace.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220886
REDBREAST
12 Year Old Cask Strength Single Pot Still Irish Whiskey
Bright golden amber color. Fruity aromas and flavors of freshly sliced apple, browned shortbread pie crust and licorice candy, roses and pear skin, and pineapple and ripe sour cherry with a slightly chewy, lively, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a hot, complex, very long fluffy honey nougat and fruit cocktail syrup, milk chocolate with roasted nuts, apple crumble and burned orange peel, and sweet butterscotch and green peppercorn finish. A satisfying blend of nuance and indulgence.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220124
Kavalan
Solist Sherry Single Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky
Clear mahogany color. Nutty, umami, roasted aromas of salted and roasted marcona almonds, Madeira cake with raisin, molasses with espresso beans, and soy sauce and braised oxtail with a slightly chewy, racy, fruity fat body and a peppery, thought-provoking, very long spicy peanut butter, sprouts and pimiento, mushrooms with raisins and honey, mexican hot chocolate, and Japanese peanuts finish. A profound study in cask finishing; rich, salty, satisfying, mesmerizing.
96 points $179.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220133
Kavalan
Solist Amontillado Sherry Single Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky
Medium dark amber color. Meaty aromas of white miso and sourdough bread, mushrooms, soy sauce and brine, and sesame candy and petrol with a lightly tannic, lively, dry-yet-fruity fat body and a peppery, nuanced, long brazil nuts in caramel, fried almond skins and brown sugar, hush puppies with green olive, and carrot cake finish. A transcendent, umami-packed whisky.
96 points $599.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220677
West Cork
10 Year Single Malt Irish Whiskey
Bright gold color. Elegant, tropical aromas of golden apple and malted milk ball, cinnamon crumble, starfruit and passionfruit, and marzipan and candied macadamia nut with a round, lively, fruity medium body and a peppery, complex, long graham cracker crust and white flowers, rosewood, white pepper, caramelized sweet onion, maraschino cherry pit and ginger candies, and Jordan almonds and tamarind-mint chutney finish. A delicious and sprightly single malt with bright tropicality and long, contemplative finish.
95 points $39.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220784
The Macallan
Double Cask 12 Year Old Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Bright golden amber color. Inviting aromas and flavors of cinnamon and red apples, leather furniture, morning forest and maple-walnut, and sourdough and toasty oak with a lightly tannic, crisp, dryish medium body and a warming, interesting, medium-long plum fruit leather, menthol lozenge, caramel and chocolate fudge, and ginger-cinnamon candy finish. Big spice and drying leatheriness beacons the imbiber for another sip; a natural cigar pairing.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220824
Highland Park
Valkyrie Single Malt Scotch
Light gold color. Smoky aromas of burning cigarette paper, freshly baked biscuits, sweet honey and burnt orange, and shoe shop with a round, vibrant, fruity medium-to-full body and a warming, very complex, very long cherry jam, luxury leather, warm wet sand, and mango chutney and mixed peppercorns finish. A tempestuous storm of a whiskey that brings with it several lifetimes of flavor and intrigue.
95 points $79.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220888
REDBREAST
21 Year Old Single Pot Still Irish Whiskey
Clear golden amber color. Fruity aromas and flavors of orange zest custard, marzipan, caramel and cinnamon-sugar sprinkle, and honey baked apple with a satiny, vibrant, dryish medium body and a peppery, amusing, medium-long cinnamon Danish, alpine herbs, wax paper, and fine leather finish. A powerful and commanding Irish single pot still whiskey.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220135
Kavalan
Solist Pedro Ximénez Sherry Single Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky
Bright dark amber color. Aromas of golden raisin and lychee shell, salted marcona almond, dark caramel and coriander, and caramelized pineapple with an fat body and a peppery, complex, endless brown sugar and sandalwood, poached pear on bread pudding, vanilla scented marzipan, and rum raisin paleta and rice pudding finish. A tropical and candied whiskey for sherry cask lovers.
95 points $699.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
222070
Bladnoch
Adela 15 Year Old Lowland Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Medium golden amber color. Attractive, fruity aromas and flavors of rum and fruit cakes, pistachio gelato, and whipped cream with a silky, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a warming, intricate, long walnut brittle, chocolate citrus peels, and grassy leafy earth finish. A delicious lowland whisky with waves of flavor that make you want to dive in.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220128
Kavalan
Podium Single Malt Whisky
Light amber color. Herbal, exotic aromas and flavors of fresh ginger and eucalyptus, ground cinnamon, rice pudding, and carob chip with a slightly chewy, vibrant, fruity full body and a hot, interesting, medium-long cinnamon gum and pineapple, mint and lemon oak, cocoa butter, and galangal and coconut finish. A tropical whiskey with a pleasing richness.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220817
Nikka
Yoichi Single Malt Whisky
Clear gold color. Aromas of green pear and coriander, cherry blossom, Jamon Iberico and melon skewer, and sea spray with a velvety, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a peppery, very complex, long toasted peanuts with coconut sugar, Carr’s wheat crackers, chrysanthemum tea, honeyed-smoked turkey, creme de cassis, ginger, sweet potato pie, and lemon balm and white pepper finish. A lovely and refined Japanese whiskey that displays its enormous character with poised restraint.
94 points $79.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
221157
THE SINGLETON
18 Year Old Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Clear golden amber color. Fruity, spicy aromas of cherry pie crusts, nutmeg and ginger, brown sugar, and heather and leather with a velvety, lively, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a warming, intricate, long fresh parsley, meyer lemon and mint, potato skin and mocha, honey, and pear and black pepper finish. A soft yet rich and complex single malt for every palate.
94 points $79.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220127
King Car
Conductor Single Malt Whisky
Medium amber color. Aromas and flavors of butterscotch, roasted corn, rose water, and smoked figs and dates with a round, vibrant, dryish medium-to-full body and a peppery, complex, medium-long tulip, oatmeal cookie and ripe plum, starfruit and hyssop, and mint chocolate gelato finish. A zesty and poised whiskey that will be perfect around the holidays.
94 points $119.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220122
Kavalan
Sherry Oak Single Malt Whisky
Brilliant mahogany color. Aromas and flavors of stewed black fruits, ground peanuts, Swiss cheese, and pancake syrup with a lightly tannic, crisp, fruity sweet full body and a searing, thought-provoking, long chocolate covered caramel and peanut butter, molasses, candied peanuts, and dried pineapple finish. A super-rich and full bodied whiskey that will play well in high-end cocktails.
94 points $149.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220136
Kavalan
Solist Moscatel Sherry Single Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky
Dark dark amber color. Fruity, sweet aromas of stewed raisin with flaked coconut, olorosso sherry, celery, rosemary, cinnamon, and Thai iced tea with a slightly chewy, vibrant, fruity full body and a peppery, subtle, long molasses coated almonds, black cherry mostarda, mango chutney, and coriander finish. A rich and mouth-coating Taiwanese whiskey with piles of sherry influence and exotic spice; an intense sipping whisky.
94 points $599.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220130
Kavalan
Distillery Reserve Single Malt Whisky Rum Cask
Clear gold color. Nutty aromas of kettle corn, cream soda, creme brulee, cantaloupe, almond confection, and candied cashews and granola with a round, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium-full body and a layered, long rose water and orange glaze, sipping chocolate, toasted coconut, Peruvian purple corn pudding, and violet candies finish. A fantastically nuanced Taiwanese whiskey that twists and turns from decadent nuttiness to an exotic perfume.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220891
Jameson
Signature Irish Whiskey
Gold color. Aromas of marzipan, Spanish moss, honey covered wheat biscuit, and sweet peach and tallow with a round, vibrant, fruity sweet medium-to-full body and a complex, medium-long muesli with figs and dates, dried sage, pink peppercorn, and toasted almond cookie finish. A lengthy whiskey with great weight and viscosity; a stupendous sipper.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220884
REDBREAST
12 Year Old Single Pot Still Irish Whiskey
Clear golden amber color. Spicy, toasty aromas and flavors of geranium, cinnamon sugar and cordite, vanilla scented honey, and toasted Hawaiian roll with a round, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium-full body and a peppery, elaborate, long red and black licorice, constant comment tea, ginger and white pepper, and white miso and prosciutto finish. A skillfully aged Irish single pot still whiskey with big oak influence and giant, kingly character.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220823
Highland Park
Viking Honor 12 Year Old Single Malt Scotch
Light golden amber color. Interesting, exotic aromas of fired rubber, durian, gooseberry, and nori with a round, vibrant, fruity full body and a peppery, layered, long toasted brown rice and fermented tea, ginger and lemongrass, gochujang and vanilla yogurt, and sweet soy sauce finish. An exotic, funky and intriguing single malt for adventure seekers.
93 points $54.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
221058
Dewar’s
The Vintage 18 Year Old Blended Scotch Whisky
Bright gold color. Fruity aromas of candied orange peel and lemon, anise ripe berries, green pear cobbler, and banana bread with a satiny, fruity light-to-medium body and a silky, compelling, medium-length frosted cherry pop tart and stewed raisin, cinnamon dusted creme brulee, ground ginger with heather, and pimiento and honey sesame candy finish. A pleasing blended scotch that hits all the right notes.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220887
REDBREAST
15 Year Old Single Pot Still Irish Whiskey
Medium golden amber color. Grainy aromas of multigrain bread and poached pear with banana with a round, crisp, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a peppery, interesting, medium-long toasted marshmallow, graham cracker, grape jelly with almond butter, and Serrano ham with peppercorns finish. A drying and masculine whiskey.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220120
Kavalan
Concertmaster Port Cask Single Malt Whisky
Clear dark amber color. Toasty, yeasty, nutty aromas and flavors of raisin, molasses, toasted cinnamon pastry, and cardamom with a velvety, vibrant, fruity full body and a warming, very complex, very long lychee and coconut cream, cafe latte and black pepper, salted peanut crisp and spun sugar, and mead and orange flower water finish. A rich and brooding whiskey with wide appeal and sophistication.
93 points $99.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220121
Kavalan
ex-Bourbon Cask Single Malt Whisky
Medium gold color. Sweet aromas of candy corn, wild mint, clover flower, and cream soda with a satiny, lively, fruity light-to-medium body and a peppery, interesting, long tangerine and curaçao oranges, dried dates, buttery artisan toffee, deep woods, and nutmeg and pumpernickel finish. A lovely, bourbon-like malt whisky with terrific concentration and length.
93 points $124.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220125
Kavalan
Solist Fino Sherry Single Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky
Clear dark amber color. Aromas of caramel latte, potted geranium, caramelized pineapple, and cocoa powder and demerara sugar with a lightly tannic, lively, fruity full body and a hot, complex, medium-long raisin studded tapioca pudding, dark chocolate coated maple creme, Thai pepper, and camphor finish. A tall, dark and handsome whiskey with plenty of texture and intrigue.
93 points $469.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220131
Kavalan
Solist Brandy Single Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky
Medium bronze color. Tropical, umami aromas and flavors of salted peanuts and sesame candy, molasses cookies and soy sauce, pineapple upside down cake and cherry cola, and allspice and kaffir lime leaf with a slightly chewy, fruity full body and a searing, epic, long sarsaparilla and Thai hot pepper, black wild rice, almond taffy, and cherry blossom and cracked black peppercorn finish. A spicy and dense whiskey that will serve as a delightful special occasion dram.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
221056
Dewar’s
The Ancestor 12 Year Old Blended Scotch Whisky
Bright amber color. Candied, fruity aromas of caramelized peach, Spanish moss and java cake, candied cherry, and apple skin with a supple, crisp, fruity medium-to-full body and a warming, interesting, medium-length apricot preserve and condensed milk, pine needles and toasty oak, almond tea cake with nougat, and duck prosciutto finish. A gentle yet rich dram; a lovely nightcap.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220882
Powers
Three Swallow Release Single Pot Still Irish Whiskey
Clear golden amber color. Nutty aromas of salted walnut, almond meal, coriander, and cedar with a satiny, vibrant, dryish medium body and a peppery, complex, medium-long dark caramel, bruleed tangerine, grape nuts, and sweet cream finish. A rich and lasting Irish single pot still whiskey for contemplative sipping or celebrating.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
221057
Dewar’s
The Monarch 15 Year Old Blended Scotch Whisky
Light gold color. Fresh, fruity aromas of aloe, honeydew melon, Maria cookies, and orange marmalade on toast with a velvety, dryish full body and a warming, complex, medium-long fresh green pear and grilled fruit, sponge cake, allspice and oregano, and caramelized pineapple and new leather finish. A rich, sophisticated socialite of a blended scotch whisky.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220897
Jameson
18 Year Old Irish Whiskey
Bright gold color. Aromas of nut brittle, fresh baked multigrain bread, and cordial cherry with a slightly chewy, dryish full body and a warming, complex, long cinnamon, spice cake, honey covered pumpkin loaf, and menthol mint finish. A rich and complex Irish whiskey that offers generous cinnamon spice character and toasty flavors; sophisticated.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220901
Midleton
Very Rare Irish Whiskey
Bright golden amber color. Aromas of honey, blackberry pie, dill and charred corn, and cherry scented candle with a round, vibrant, fruity medium body and a peppery, interesting, medium-length rice cake, wheat biscuit, dried fruits, and sandalwood finish. A fruit-forward Irish whiskey for all occasions.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220126
Kavalan
Solist Vinho Barrique Single Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky
Clear copper color. Tropical, nutty aromas of candied pineapple and freshly pulled espresso, salted peanut brittle, vanilla cola, caramelized tropical fruits, and island sun and pecan pie with a round, vibrant, fruity full body and a warming, complex, medium-long artisan toffee, kiwi candy, toasted Hawaiian roll, and yuzu marmalade and oolong tea finish. An intensely expressive, tropical, chewy treat crafted with great skill and passion.
92 points $199.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220785
The Macallan
Rare Cask Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Light mahogany color. Inviting, tropical, yeasty aromas and flavors of spiced raisin bread and cedar, caramelized papaya and stewed peach, starfruit, and molasses with a velvety, crisp, fruity full body and a tingling, involved, long dried fruit melange, mixed nut bar and root beer, preserved hibiscus, and allspice and mixed peppercorns finish. A lovable sherry-finished whisky complete with all the caramelly, fruity fix-ins.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220134
Kavalan
Solist Manzanilla Sherry Single Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky
Dark mahogany color. Attractive, nutty aromas and flavors of sweet wheat crackers with fig spread, salted peanut skins, bananas foster, and barbershop and marinated pimiento with an oily, dry-yet-fruity full body and a hot, layered, long geranium bed, burnt toast with chocolate spread, and black tea with bergamot finish. Big body and pleasing salinity shine in this Taiwanese Whiskey.
92 points $599.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
221159
THE SINGLETON
12 Year Old Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Clear amber color. Aromas and flavors of dried cherry, dulce de leche, orange flan and bitter dark chocolate genache, and ripe green pear with a round, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, complex, long pecan praline, candied orange peel, honeycomb and cedar cigar dividers, and creme Anglaise finish. A rich, balanced single malt with a creaminess that will appeal to novice scotch drinkers.
91 points $34.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220818
Nikka
Miyagikyo Single Malt Whisky
Light gold color. Earthy aromas of autumn leaves, yuzu zest, ripe apple, starfruit skin, peach skin and persimmon, and campfire with a round, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a warming, prodigious, very long dried ginger, pu erh tea, luxury pipe tobacco, enoki mushroom and lemongrass, and orange peel and star anise finish. An elegant, nuanced journey of the senses.
91 points $79.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
221059
Dewar’s
Signature Blended Scotch Whisky
Bright gold color. Aromas and flavors of cinnamon, mace, grass clippings, and sherry wood with a soft, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, carefree charred mixed nuts, bit-o-honey candy, and marzipan finish. A quiet whiskey for still moments.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
218617
Grand Royal
Special Reserve Whisky
Light golden amber color. Smoky aromas of charred corn silk, honey mesquite, caramel, and puffed cereal with a lean, crisp, dry-yet-fruity light body and a warming, captivating, medium-length perfectly charred corn elotes with all the fixins’, graham cracker, caramel corn, and barbecue brisket finish. A very appetizing, smoky whiskey for shooting and playful cocktails.
90 points $9 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
221055
Dewar’s
White Label Blended Scotch Whisky
Clear golden amber color. Aromas of tobacco, lemon bar, salt cave, and underripe pineapple with a round, crisp, dryish medium body and a warming, medium-length grilled green pepper and artichoke, barbecue pork, eucalyptus, and salted citrus salad finish. A savory blend for smoke seekers; add drops of water to further develop the flavors.
90 points $18 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220889
Jameson
Blended Irish Whiskey
Bright gold color. Aromas of green apple, water cracker, and orange flower with a bright, dryish light body and a tingling, medium-length almond oil, nori, and toffee finish. A shooting or mixing whiskey with a pleasing saline finish.
90 points $20 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220828
John Barr
Reserve Blended Scotch Whisky
Medium golden amber color. Aromas of biscuit, honey, fresh lemons and lanolin, and Worcestershire with a round, crisp, fruity medium body and a tingling, medium-length muesli and seared fig, five alive, cinnamon candy, and molasses finish. An all-purpose, richly textured blended scotch.
90 points $24.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
221310
Kilbeggan
Single Grain Irish Whiskey
Clear golden amber color. Aromas of pencil eraser, soy milk, and butterscotch with a satiny, crisp, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a peppery, delightful, medium-length toffee and candied banana-tapioca pudding, candied almond with orange blossom water, anise candy and fresh mixed melon balls, and sweet egg custard tart with honey finish. A whiskey that does a 180 from nose to palate with the latter being a deliciously bright study in rich confection.
90 points $29.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220881
Green Spot
Single Pot Still Irish Whiskey
Bright golden amber color. Attractive aromas of candied ginger and McIntosh apple skin, light caramel, fruit punch and tapioca pudding, and lily with a round, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a warming, stimulating, medium-long honeycomb and nut brittle, lemon poppyseed shortbread, chocolate malt milkshake, and triscuit cracker with marmite finish. A wholly satisfying pot still whiskey.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220894
Jameson
Round Irish Whiskey
Gold color. Green aromas of shredded wheat, toasted coconut, and vanilla almond milk with a round, crisp, dryish medium body and an interesting, medium-length brioche crouton, orange marmalade, and bay leaf finish. Toasty grain flavor up front leads to a crispy and satisfying finish in this lengthy whiskey.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220119
Kavalan
Classic Single Malt Whisky
Clear copper color. Nutty, floral aromas and flavors of stewed raisin, rich sherry, toasted marcona almond, and dried rose petal and petrol with a supple, lively, fruity full body and a warming, massive, very long candied pecan and rosemary, toasted brioche with honey and marmalade, chocolate hazelnut spread, and caramelized mango and pineapple finish. A superb after-dinner dram.
90 points $89.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220892
Jameson
Crested Irish Whiskey
Gold color. Sweet aromas of Belgian waffle, golden raisin, apricot and tonka, and golden apple with a round, vibrant, fruity medium body and a stimulating, medium-length jasmine and honey, fried sage, twice baked potato, and chive and candied ginger finish. A breakfast buffet of an Irish whiskey; satisfying and sippable.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
221158
THE SINGLETON
15 Year Old Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Clear amber color. Fruity, sweet aromas of red candied apple, caramel and leather, chocolate covered orange, and black tea with a round, crisp, fruity medium-full body and a warming, complex, medium-long peach skins and fig, sourdough biscuits with honey and tarragon, creme brulee with cocoa nibs, and vanilla gelato with nutmeg finish. A honeyed, melt-in-your-mouth single malt.
89 points $49.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220898
Jameson
Cooper's Croze Irish Whiskey
Light gold color. Sweet aromas and flavors of honey and vanilla nougat, shortbread thumbprint cookies with jam, wonderbread and rice candy, and sweet corn and candle wax with a glycerous, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a peppery, captivating, breezy clove, allspice, and toasted hazelnut finish. An expressive Irish blended whiskey with ample barrel influence.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220856
Shieldaig
14 Year Old Islay Single Malt
Bright golden amber color. Malty, toasty aromas of toffee coated triscuit, lemon custard on graham cracker crust, kiln and cinnamon toothpick, and grilled corn husk with a glycerous, vibrant, fruity medium-full body and a sleek, engaging, medium-length smoked sage, cherry pie with mint, grilled pineapple and smoked ham skewer, and sea salt finish. A slightly peated, earthy and chewy single malt from Islay.
89 points $59.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
218616
Grand Royal
Double Gold Whisky
Bright gold color. Aromas of roasted corn, brown butter, and caramel with a round, bright, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a tingling, medium-length rose petal, peaches and pears, flint, and almond oil and yellow curry finish. An approachable and fruity whiskey.
88 points $18 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220890
Jameson
Caskmates Stout Editon Irish Whiskey
Gold color. Aromas of rice cake, honeyed apple chips, dusty leather, and cedar closet with a slightly chewy, crisp, dryish medium body and a warming, interesting, medium-length watermelon rind, malted barley, See’s butterscotch lollipop, and fennel seed finish. A crowd-pleasing Irish Whiskey.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220825
The Irishman
Founders Reserve Irish Whiskey
Bright golden amber color. Aromas and flavors of geranium and apricot, farina and green pepper, orange oil and almond cakes, and fruit cocktail and moss with a round, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a graceful, subtle, medium-long cherry pit, browned Irish butter, sprouted grain biscuit, and honey oat quickbread with ginger finish. A persistent whiskey with a spring garden of a nose and cake-like palate.
88 points $34.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220893
Jameson
Black Barrel Irish Whiskey
Bright golden amber color. Aromas of butterscotch, vanilla wafer cookie, and fruit cake with pineapple with a round, crisp, fruity medium-to-full body and a smooth, interesting, medium-length caramel covered raisin, candied nuts, toasted and buttered banana bread, and coconut finish. A smooth, rich and caramelly Irish whiskey that will hold up well in cocktails; convert a rum drinker with this one.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220899
Jameson
Blender's Dog Irish Whiskey
Light gold color. Fresh, nutty aromas and flavors of peanut brittle, sweet marzipan, nougat, and lilac flowers and honey with a round, crisp, fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, snappy cracker jacks, salted pretzel, baseball card gum, and lemon meringue with orange zest finish. An Irish whiskey that will have you root root rooting for the home team.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220895
Jameson
Lively Irish Whiskey
Gold color. Green aromas and flavors of lily, clover honey, aloe, and coconut and cantaloupe with a soft, fruity medium body and a breezy lemon curd, honeycomb cereal, shredded wheat in sweet cream, and dried mint and cashew butter finish. A honey forward Irish whiskey for cocktails and shots.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220885
REDBREAST
Lustau Edition Single Pot Still Irish Whiskey
Medium golden amber color. Floral, fruity aromas and flavors of geranium, roasted almond, fresh melon and ripe red apple, and semisweet baking chocolate with a slightly chewy, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a hot, delightful, medium-long rice pudding with cinnamon and amontillado sherry, banana leaf and coriander chutney, bananas foster and cherry candy, and candied yams and Italian leather finish. A strong and sherry influenced pot still whiskey that will be a great player in cocktails or as a sipper.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
219025
Glen Grant
18 Year Old Single Malt Speyside Scotch Whisky
Dull straw yellow color. Spicy aromas and flavors of honey, tarragon, lanolin, and good and plenty with a round, vibrant, fruity light-to-medium body and a tingling, refreshing, medium-long ash, allium, nougat, and asian pear and cornichon relish finish. A savory single malt; a botanist’s whisky.
88 points $119.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
222071
Bladnoch
Samsara Lowland Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Light golden amber color. Interesting, inviting aromas and flavors of peach marmalade on raisin toast, pencil in a pocket protector, cashew nougat, and strawberry-banana yogurt with a satiny, tangy, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a warming, stimulating, long sweet cream on honeyed peach granola, wet limestone, peppery spices and grassy herbs, and tobacco finish. A warm and inviting lowland malt with a strong spine of structure and flavor; this is a good choice for cigars.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220743
Jura
10 Year Old Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Medium golden amber color. Earthy, rustic aromas of horse barn, leather saddle, black licorice, and buttery sherry sauce with a velvety, vibrant, dry medium-to-full body and a warming, complex, medium-long dried rose petals, tar, balanced peat, sweet biscuit, burnt toffee, and golden raisin finish. A Marlborough Man of a single malt; dry, rugged, poised.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
222069
Pure Scot
Blended Scotch Whisky
Medium golden amber color. Toasty aromas and flavors of buttery toasted fig bread and buttery roasted cashews with a supple, soft, dryish medium-to-full body and a tingling, interesting, medium-length caramel buttercream, maple toffee, and minerals finish. An attractive nutty, buttery blend with great flavor and an instant appeal.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220859
Jamie Stewart
Blended Scotch Whisky
Medium golden amber color. Floral aromas of orange blossom rice candy, sweet ginger, magnolia, and Easter ham and olive oil with a round, crisp, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tingling, medium-long poached apple with cinnamon, orange zest, panna cotta, and gingerbread and apricot finish. A light and nuanced blended scotch whisky with a great finish.
87 points $15.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220822
Highland Park
Magnus Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Medium gold color. Aromas of limeleaf, plum and cedar, wet beach, and orange blossom honey with a lightly tannic, crisp, dry medium body and a peppery, complex, medium-long dried fig, ginger and cinnamon candies, black tea, and chicory and black peppercorns finish. A drying and robust whiskey that will delight cigar smokers.
87 points $39.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220848
Glencadam
The Re-awakening 13 year Old Highland Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Pale golden yellow color. Fruity aromas of dried apricot and turmeric with a supple, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a peppery, interesting, medium-length peach ginger tea, toasted baguette, ginseng gum, and dried pineapple finish. A light-on-its-feet, spicy and exotic single malt; a great daily dram.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220900
Jameson
Distiller's Safe Irish Whiskey
Light gold color. Fresh, nutty aromas of freshly sliced apple, greenhouse and wisteria, butter crackers, and almond skins with a round, bright, fruity light body and a smooth, buoyant snickers bar, mexican hot chocolate, freshly ground black pepper, and nutella on whole grain bread finish. A light and breezy Irish whiskey to shoot with friends.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
221773
Brenne
Estate Cask Single Malt Whisky
Clear gold color. Fruity aromas of violet and lilac candies, fruit snack and spumoni, clove cigarette, and vanilla cologne with a silky, crisp, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, complex, medium-long orange flower water, sweet almond and cashew, blueberry and hibiscus and white chocolate, and honey and dried white flowers finish. A feminine and exotic spirit; a cognac-lover’s transition to whisky.
87 points $59.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220857
Bellevoye
French Whisky
Bright gold color. Interesting aromas of grilled peach and beeswax, lavender and cantaloupe, Turkish delight, and honey drizzled graham cracker with a round, crisp, dry medium body and a warming, intriguing, long green malt, praline, dried tarragon, oregano, and bay leaf, and leather and bison grass finish. An pervasive herbal dram for those that like their whiskey on the younger side.
86 points $34.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
218682
Royal Circle
Whisky
Medium golden amber color. Aroma of limestone with a soft, dry-yet-fruity thin body and a warming, brief creamed corn, vanilla nougat, burned toast with spinach, and starched shirt finish. A neutral-tasting grain whiskey for beginners.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
219650
Royal Raymondt
Ultra Premium Whisky
Pale slivery straw color. Candied aromas of chocolate covered malted milk ball, vanilla tootsie roll, jasmine tea, and cattails with a round, dry-yet-fruity light body and a tingling, captivating, medium-length caramelized pineapple, vanilla yogurt covered raisins, moss, and orange blossom water candy coated aniseed finish. A wholly enjoyable blended scotch whisky for a great highball.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220742
Shackleton
Blended Highland Malt Scotch Whisky
Clear amber color. Aromas of cinnamon rooibos tea, clover flower and sliced apples, honey, and wet grain with a round, vibrant, fruity medium body and a warming, medium-length caramelized plum, tobacco and milk chocolate, lush field after the rain, and fruit cake finish. A rock-solid blended malt scotch that will make a super-satisfying highball.
85 points $34.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220826
Writers Tears
Copper Pot Irish Whiskey
Bright amber color. Grainy aromas and flavors of candied cherry and dandelion, gingerbread cookie, marmalade, and pineapple upside down cake with a round, vibrant, dryish medium body and a peppery, interesting, cheery rice cake, oregano and gochujang, honey and schechuan peppercorn, and lip balm finish. A spicy Irish whiskey with an eastern sensibility.
85 points $44.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220896
Jameson
Bold Irish Whiskey
Gold color. Aromas and flavors of vanilla soft serve ice cream, egg custard, and yellow apple with an oily, soft, fruity medium body and a graceful, quick praline, maple nut creme, smoked peach, and leather finish. A shootable and mouth coating Irish Whiskey.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
222068
Pure Scot
Virgin Oak 43 Blended Scotch Whiskey
Medium amber color. Rubbery, roasted aromas and flavors of rubber eraser, roasted whole banana, cedar closet and saw dust, and singed fabric with a lightly tannic, bright, dryish medium body and a peppery, crisp pencil shavings, honeyed biscuit, campfire logs and leaves, and pepper finish. A very oak-forward smoky blend with a careening balance; serve with a bit a of water.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
218620
Grand Royal
Whisky
Clear golden yellow color. Aromas and flavors of corn bread, peach pie, powdered sugar, and lemon rind with a glycerous, bright, dryish light body and a warming, short pencil eraser, cucumber rind, and margarine finish. A mild whiskey for mixing.
84 points $4 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
218618
Grand Royal
Signature Whisky
Clear gold color. Grainy, smoky aromas and flavors of smoked almonds, green malt, limoncello, and banana leaf with a soft, dryish light-to-medium body and a polished, medium-length mole and tapenade finish. A smoky, savory whiskey for craft cocktails.
84 points $6 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220858
Carlyle
Blended Scotch Whisky
Medium amber color. Aromas of green apple, sugared corn flakes, bananas foster, and Murphy’s wood soap with a lean, soft, dryish thin body and a silky, breezy pear taffy, graham cracker crust, allspice, and squash finish. An approachable blended scotch for a crowd.
84 points $17.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
219560
Knockmore
Blended Irish Whiskey
Light golden yellow color. Aromas of honey butter on wheat biscuit, fresh grass, steel cut oats, and grilled red apple with a supple, crisp, dry-yet-fruity light body and a warming, brisk molasses, pear chutney, and fresh cigarette finish. An Irish whiskey for shots and mixing.
84 points $28.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220676
West Cork
Bourbon Cask Blended Irish Whiskey
Clear gold color. Aromas and flavors of pear drop, petrol, cherry pit, and apricot with a thin body and a quick honeyed biscuit, wheat toast, golden raisin, and green wood and minerals finish. A mixed-drink-ready whiskey.
82 points $27.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220074
Hyde
Single Grain Irish Whiskey
Bright gold color. Aroma of new car with a soft, dry light body and a hot, brief black pepper and bay leaf finish. A college-party-worthy Irish whiskey.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
218622
Eagle
Whisky
Bright gold color. Aromas of root beer, horse hair comb, bananas flambé and gingerbread, and grilled veggies with a glycerous, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tingling, crisp green plantain, sweet potato pie, strawberry sauce, and island flowers finish. A banana split sundae of a whiskey that will appeal to rum drinkers.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
218621
Grand Royal
ID Whisky
Clear light gold color. Aromas of powdered sugar, swimming pool, underripe banana, and marzipan with an oily, crisp, dryish watery body and a warming, fleeting lemon slushie and jalapeño and pineapple salsa finish. A mineral-forward whiskey for mixing.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
218619
Grand Royal
Smooth Whisky
Clear gold color. Grainy aromas of green grain and chrysanthemum with a glycerous, bright, dryish light-to-medium body and a tingling, breezy wheat cracker with molasses, whole grain toast, orange marmalade, and underripe peach finish. A green and chewy whiskey for craft spirit lovers.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
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