Madeira Finish

Review: Penderyn Legend Welsh Whisky by Jason Hambrey

Ex-bourbon barrels; ex-madeira finish
100% Malted Barley
Distiller Penderyn (Aberdare, Wales)

Despite the scottish dominance of whisky production in the united kingdom, a few distilleries exist outside Scotland. One of the most well known is Penderyn, a Welsh distillery located in the Brecon Beacons national park in Wales. It was founded in 2004, so it's still a relatively new distillery.

Review (2018)

  • Batch: N/A
  • Bottling Code: 72963
  • Bottling Date: ~2018

Sharp and young – hard pears, green apples, rich caramel (think rich madeira), nuts, green apple – it actually reminds me a bit of irish single pot still with the oiliness and spiciness. Toffee emerges with time with more hard fruit candies. A bit leafy too. The palate is sharp, oily, with a white pepper spiciness and still full of orchard fruits. The finish is lightly bitter, spicy, and still full of pear, apple, and toffee. Some rich honeycake as well, and pleasantly frying on the finish. Does fairly well with water, but this is young, sharp, and not balanced.

I do love the finish, though – spicy and very pleasantly tannic.

Score: 78/100

Value: 53/100 (based on $63)

Review: Whistlepig Old World 12 Year Old Straight Rye Whiskey by Jason Hambrey

12 Years; Finished in Madeira, Port, and Sauternes Casks
95% Rye
Distiller MGP (Lawrenceburg, Indiana)

After experimenting with different cask finishes, Whistlepig setted on blending a ratio of 63% madeira finished rye, 30% sauternes finished rye, and 7% port finished rye. And then dropped the ABV to 43%....

Review (2016)

  • Batch: N/A

  • Bottling Code: N/A

  • Bottling Date: ~2015

Very complex on the nose. Wine gums, mint, oak, and quite a lot of candied fruit. Though the port is the smallest component, it certainly pulls its weight here. Charred oak, rye(but it doesn't dominate), dried fruit, and cola.

The palate is lightly sour, and there’s not quite enough rye – if you ask me – but lots of wood(s), and a fairly good and rich dried fruit, almost chutneyed character. It is unique…but soft, too, particularly for Whistlepig. The palate is a bit too watery – if you ask me – with more wine gums, a bit of tannins, and – on the finish – a few tannins and oak, with some grape ju-jubes. As you can tell, this reminds me quite a bit of candy…and here on the finish we finally get a bit of rye alongside some red wine tannin– and it is my favorite part of the whisky. But….why 43%? A bit too sweet and soft for my preferences, particulary with rye. I prefer the Madeira finish.

Recommended (81% of whiskies I’ve reviewed to date get this recommendation or higher).

Value: Low. Pretty steep stuff. (~190$ CAD)