The September tasting of the River City Whisky Society had an interesting theme……Animal House. The goal was to try whiskies with the name of an animal in the distiller or the expression. In the final choosing’s were two bourbons, and Irish blended whiskey, two blended scotches and a rye.
Of course each attendee ranked the six whiskies as to their most and least favorite. Keep in mind that the final rankings are all about personal preference and not an indication as to the quality of the whisky. For instance, there are several members who are bourbon lovers and only “like” scotch. Others lover scotch and put up with the “nasty sweetness” of bourbon. And still others, like myself, love whisk(e)y in all its varieties.
So when you see the final rankings remember that their position in the list is not based on their quality, simply on the preference of the taster.
So here we go:
#6 – Fighting Cock. This is a 6 year old bourbon with 51.5% ALC from Heaven Hill. It has been compared to Wild Turkey 101 in taste and is a couple bucks cheaper. I find it to be slightly sweeter than the Wild Turkey. Our tasters had the following to say: Sweet smell, Spicy, Big bite, Kind of bitter, Mellow caramel, A splash of water tames the bite, Excellent, Love the name, Crisp and warm.
#5 – Black Bull Kyloe. This is a blended scotch served at 50% ALC. Oily, Very smokey, Kind of sweet, A taste of salt, Tastes young, Very smooth, No depth of taste, Short finish.
#4 – Wild Geese, Rare Irish. This is a blended Irish whiskey served at 43% ALC. I came across this whiskey at a small shop in Weston, MO. It is one of four expressions put out by Wild Geese and was $60. The tasting notes: Smells better than it tastes, Light sweet nose, Full on the palate, Very smooth, Light on the tongue, Heavy fruit taste, Gentle spicy, Short finish.
#3 – Sheep Dip, Blended Islay. This is a blended scotch at 40% ALC. Sheep Dip is an unusual name for a scotch but they have put out some very good expressions. Super peaty, Heavy on the nose, Smokey sweet, Smoothest Islay ever, Great fire-side dram, Very smooth, My new favorite Islay, Lingering finish.
#2 – WhistlePig, 100% Rye Whiskey. This rye is imported from Canada and bottled in Vermont and is made from 100% unmalted rye. Served at 50% ALC. Smooth aroma but sharp bite, Light fruit on the palate, Great spice, Flavorful, Taste of vanilla and butterscotch, Strong and sweet, Chocolate-like finish.
#1 – Wild Turkey Kentucky Spirit Bourbon. This is a single barrel bourbon aged for 8 ½ to 9 ½ years and served at 50.5% ALC. This has been my favorite Wild Turkey expression for quite a while and with a price of under $50 it is a good value. Tasting notes: Sweet and mild, Caramel and oak on the tongue, Smooth, Easy to drink, Bit of a bite, Fantastic, Mellow on the back end, Pleasant, Smooth finish.
One thing about a tasting like this, you get exposed to great diversity in the whisky world and you get good insight into your personal preferences. It was another fun night with a great bunch of guys.
P.S. If you don’t understand why the attached photo was chosen, your man-card is revoked!