Sunday, February 28, 2010

02/28 - Pre-Tasting some Laddies

Twice a year we (a group of 6 to 8 guys) host a Whisky Tasting combined with cigars at the Lounge in Kreuzlingen. The first was with 6 different Whiskys, a good representation what Scotland has to offer... The guys liked the peaty ones so the motto of the second tasting was: "The peaty way..." And it was peaty.... ended up with the Ardbeg Supernova, having app. 100 ppm of Phenol....

The third tasting, taking place in April, will be a Bruichladdich Vertical Tasting with the following range:
  • Bruichladdich 1998 Oloroso Sherry Edition, 10 yo.
  • Bruichladdich 12 yo., First Edition
  • Bruichladdich XV, Second Edition
  • Bruichladdich XII, First Edition
  • Bruichladdich 18 yo., Second Edition
  • Bruichladdich Black Art 1989

To find out the taste and to be able to give the participants an impression of what they have in their glass I usually pre-taste all the stuff, that´s what I did at the weekend. Another point is to know the Whisky and to choose two cigars which match with it.

One cigar, which will definetly match, will be the Sancho Panza Belicosos. The salty aroma will get into a perfect balance with the Scotch. I'm a bit unsure about the second one, maybe a Rafael Gonzalez Corona Extra or a Upmann Magnum 46.

But this will be another story and will be part of the report after the tasting has taken place.

Today I put my focus on the Whisky, drink it, taste it... and make the notes.... Because the notes are the only reason for drinking it....

Let's start with No. 1 on the list, the youngest, Bruichladdich 1998 Oloroso Sherry Edition, 10 yo.:

Nose: Dried fruits, rum raisins, bloomy
Taste: Dry, Sweetness of orange and apricot, some toffee, vanilla, light spicyness, decent peat aroma
Aftertaste: Black tea and menthol (refreshing)

The second one is the Standard 12 yo. which I don't have here right now, so I cannot review it, will do it later when I get this missing bottle.

No. 3 is the 15 yo: Bruichladdich XV, Second Edition:

Nose: Wine, vanilla, decent sweetness
Taste: Spicy, fresh milled, black pepper, fruity (apricot and quince)
Aftertaste: Very long, decent saltiness, oak wood

The one following now is: Bruichladdich XVII, First Edition:

Nose: Oak, apricot, salty sea air
Taste: Creamy with a certain fruitiness and nutty flavors
Aftertaste: Very long aftertaste with salt and oak wood

No. 5 one the list: Bruichladdich 18 yo., Second Edition

Nose: Oak, decent grassy flavors, citrus
Taste: Tropcial fruits (Mango), vanilla, citrus, malt
Aftertaste: Long with citrus and salt

The last one, which will crown it all: Bruichladdich Black Art 1989

Nose: Spicy, wine cellar, cassis, earthy
Taste: Complex, balance between earthiness and sweetness, cassis, red berries
Aftertaste: Short and sweet

All Whiskys are bottled with 46 % alcohol, they are non-chill-filtered and without any additional coloring.

Friday, February 26, 2010

02/25 - The Bourbon Experiment

Some time ago I received a little package from Jeremy who send me some Tequila to try....

He knows that I'm a big Bourbon fan (that's very ironic) and so he added a half bottle of Woodford Distillers Reserve... for those who don't know: I usually drink Scotch Single Malt only, I've a certain aversion for Bourbon.

But in this case I've to try it and here are my impressions:

Nose: Sweetness of honey, very bloomy, intensive vanilla aroma, some alcohol in the background

Taste: Not as sweet as the smell (positive for me in this case), a mix of vanilla and spices, very fruity, caramell and Crème brûlée, oak wood

Aftertaste: Oak wood and a mix of spices, no sweetness

Woodford Distillers Reserve

I was surprised about this Bourbon, it tasted not too bad at all. After the Pappy van Winckle 20 yo that I tried a few months ago, this is the second Bourbon which I didn't dislike.

About the Pappy I said: good stuff, I like it.

I guess I have to say the same about the Woodford. I still prefer the Scottish ones, but those Bourbons are really worth a try...

Saturday, February 20, 2010

02/19 - 02/20 - The call of the pharmacist

Andreas calls the smokers for his emergency duty every 13 days... and if it's on a Friday it's a good situation to follow his invitation... and so did we.

We (Ralf, Marcel and myself) met at Portmann's shop at 11 am and I started the day with a '09 RyJ Cazadores and an Espresso.... during picking up a box of '99 ERdM Elegantes.

After I quick lunch at a local Chinese restaurant hit the road to head to Woerrstadt where we arrived around 6 pm (after a side trip to Darmstadt where we had to grab a package at a local package station --> thx to stupid German post service). During the drive Marcel and I had the privilege to sit on the back seat and we drank a bottle of Porto Cruz Vintage 1989 and smoked a Hoyo de Monterrey Particulares which was another perfect match. Ralf was a bit envious because he could only take a little sip of the really delicious port wine.

We checked in at Fritz Carlton aka "Cafe Fritz" and then went over the street to the pharmacy where some of the guys already waited with the first cigars burning.

As every time before we had all different kind of foods there.... horse burgers, cheese, different kind of bread, home made tortilla, tiramisu, Swiss chocolate etc. and not to forget the many bottles of wine and booze....

It was really a big pleasure to meet all the guys which I only see now for special occasions.... it's always fun and you feel like you've seen the last time the day before...

I guess it needs not much words to express what happened at the pharmacy, everybody who's been there before knows how it works... see some pix to get an impression:

At 4.30 am Andreas who was still on duty was too tired to stay any longer and so he asked Marcel and me kindly to leave the location that he take a little nap....

We went to bed at 5 am, couldn´t really fall asleep and after 4 hrs. and a quick shower we went to the Irish pub for brunch... Day started with a coffee and a '84 Montecristo Especial... to make it a bit healthy there was an orange juice...

It was nice that Andreas found the time to join us too... thx again for being a great host, it's always a big pleasure to be your guest.

Rolls, ham, cheese, srambled eggs and other stuff for breakfast and some more cigars followed before we again jumped to our car to drive back to Switzerland. I arrived at home at 4.30 pm, with two days full of fun and good company behind me.

Cya all in Wiesbaden for the 10th anniversary celebration of the CCC (Cigar Cult Club Wiesbaden/Mainz) end of March.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Crazy cats in da house...

Since more than 10 yrs. we have cats. Whoopie (pic 1) and Don (pic 2) are brother and sister and we picked them up at an animal shelter near the place where we lived at this time... Carlos (pic 3) we "found" during a trip to Spain where we visited my in-laws. We spotted him at the harbour area of Vinaros between the rocks... and it seems that we took the devil himself....




Carlos likes to do crazy things... such as jumping into the bathtub when it is nearly empty.... but enough water left for him to have some fun.

If you are not familiar with cats: this is TOTALLY CRAZY, because cats fear water like the devil the holy water....

After he dried his pelage, he sometimes feels like he should have some more fun... in this case he enjoys himself with the red grouse (which is a stuffed animal)