About this blog:

This blog will feature tasting notes, reviews, distillery visits and whisky news with focus mainly on Scottish single malts. This will sometimes be accompanied by politically incorrect (whisky) opinions. You have now been warned! :-)
The views expressed here are entirely my own, unless otherwise stated.

Sunday, 9 March 2014


Lots of things have been said about British cuisine over the years and a good while back people outside the UK thought that Fish and Chips was about the only thing served there... well, that's not true - they also serve Steak and Ale Pie - and being a menu regular many places, I can see why the SMWS also used this as a descriptor for this whisky. It's about as traditional as a sherry whisky from the isles can get without being peated.

Oh, and just round off the food analogy here... You can still get some killer fish'n'chips in the UK (I hear, I don't eat white fish myself) and Steak and Ale Pie are on the menues in most pubs these days... That said, you eat well in the UK these days - both in the country and cities.

I could start listing places here, but this is a whisky blog, not a food blog... so I'll skip to the whisky... though if you as nice by mail, I might recommend a few places to you ;-)

Washbacks at the Arran Distillery, August 19th 2012 © The Malt Desk
Isle of Arran 1996 121.62 (17.09.1996) 16yo, 'Steak and Ale Pie' 54,2%, sherry puncheon, 574 bottles, The Scotch Malt Whisky Society

Colour is mahogany

Slight sulphury hint that wears off after a while, dried fruits, oily with a mashy an earthy mushroom note, grandmother's cigars and a hint of orange

Again a very thick texture and that hint of sulphur adding to the heavier style of this Arran, cinnamon, drying oak spices, roast beef meatiness, pear in madeira and caramel

An Arran expression on the heavy side, this one... missing a bit of balance between the things it has to offer - still good, though



  1. SMWS have continually tried to make a virtue of sulphur, regardless of the controversy over it. The same tainted casks keep resurfacing in successive releases. I personally can't abide even a hint of the stuff so I'd mark it down heavily. I appreciate that some people don't mind it (particularly the Germans apparently).

  2. I'm actaully quite sensitive to, atleast certain kinds, of sulphur... but sometimes I find that it can add to the character of a whisky. If it carries the rubbery style sulphur I'm put off by it immediately...

    1/3 of all people can't detect sulphury notes, which goes a long way to explaing why so many sulphured releases hit the streets - that and the reason that you can sell almost everything these days...