April 2016: Swedish Whiskey

by Phillip Horvey

Cocktail:

  • Name: Derby
  • Ingredients: Blended Whiskey, Sweet Vermouth, Cointreau, lime juice
  • Recipe: 1 1/2 ounce Mackmyra Mack Whiskey; 1/2 ounce Sweet vermouth; 1/2 ounce Cointreau; 1/2 ounce sweet lime juice

Bottle 1: Mackmyra First Edition 

  • Distillery: Mackmyra Distillery
  • Proof: 1 % ABV
  • Price: $52.73
  • Purchase location: Masterofmalt.com
  • Tasting Notes:
    • Nose: Fruity with citrus, pear, apple and honey. A light oakiness with sweet, lightly toasted bread notes and fresh butter toffee.
    • Palate: Fruity and smooth with citrus, caramel and honey. A light oakiness can be discerned at the end
    • Finish: The aftertaste is tuned and balanced with hints of dark chocolate.
  • Why this bottle is featured: It is the First Edition, which has great reviews.
  • Bottle 2: Mackmyra Svensk Ek
    • Distillery: Mackmyra Distillery
    • Proof: 1 % ABV
    • Price: $55.80
    • Purchase location: Masterofmalt.com
    • Tasting Notes:
      • Nose: Sweet and spicy, toasted oak, lemon cake and apple pie.
      • Palate: Darker, earthier spices, cashew nut, toffee. Raspberry and black pepper. Milk chocolate.
      • Finish: Vanilla with hints of mint and chili.
    • Why this bottle is featured: Svensk Ek, or ‘Swedish Oak’, is matured in barrels made from oak trees planted on the island of Visingsö centuries ago. This oak was originally intended for shipbuilding.
  • Bottle 3: Spirit of Hven Seven Stars No.2 Merak Single Malt
    • Distillery: Spirit of Hven Distillery
    • Proof: 45% ABV
    • Price: $128.41
    • Purchase location: Masterofmalt.com
    • Tasting Notes:
      • Nose: Candy apple and red fruit sweetness, followed by dark cherries, ginger and creamy vanilla. A drop of water unlocks some peaty smoke deep within.
      • Palate: Spiced up front, crushed black pepper and cinnamon joined by oily barley. It slowly turns sweet and juicy with a hint of citrus peels.
      • Finish: Smoke lasts and lasts on the finish.
    • Why this bottle is featured: The second limited edition Swedish single malt whiskey from the Spirit of Hven distiller. The distillery plans to release five more whiskies in the Seven Stars series over the next five years. This expression is called Merak, named after one of the stars in Ursa Major constellation (i.e., the Big Dipper/the Plough).
  • Bottle 4Svenska Eldvatten Glenn
    • Distillery: Svenska Eldvatten Blended
    • Proof: 50% ABV
    • Price: $80.12
    • Purchase location: Masterofmalt.com
    • Tasting Notes:
      • Nose: Quite Young. I would say that the majority of the malts used in this blend matured in refill ex-bourbon casks. But, there’s evidence of the odd ex-sherry Cask as well. And, I would not be surprised if some ex-wine casks were also used. It’s certainly not a peat bomb despite the presence of Laphroaig and Bowmore. The peat, smoke, and brine are there but their presence is quite subdued. It’s much more a Highland blend with some Islay mixed in to give it a light smoky touch. I find young alcohol, green apple, red fruit, muffins, vanilla, dried fruit, lemon peel, light heather, honey, refill oak, sweet barley, light pepper and traces of white chocolate. It’s not bad, but the spirit is still a bit raw and edgy. The ABV is a tad too high in my opinion. The way it is, the alcohol plays a very dominant role.
      • Palate: Raw and quite sweet at first. I find sweet barley, vanilla, toffee, nuts, dried fruits, light heather, honey, very light peat and smoke, fruity new make spirit (pears and green apples), citrus peel and red berries. Later on spices such as pepper, nutmeg and cinnamon appear along with some salted licorice.
      • Finish: Middle-long. sweet and spicy at first. dry and herbal towards the end. I find sweet barley, nougat, vanilla, toffee, dried fruits, red fruit, nuts, oak, new make spirit, very light peat and smoke, dried herbs, pepper and light licorice.
    • Why this bottle is featured: I picked this bottle because it compiles several Scotches, which are blended and bottled in Sweden at Svenska Eldvatten.

Gentlemen devoted to the finest.

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