The November tasting of the River City Whisky Society featured expressions with no age statement (NAS). An age statement on a bottle indicates the youngest whisky in that bottle. An expression that states “12 Years Old” may contain a mixture, or blend, of older whiskies along with the 12 year old whisky but it is still listed as 12 years old. Being able to make expressions without an age statement allows the distilleries a lot of room to work with younger and older whiskies to come up with great flavor profiles. NAS whiskies should not be overlooked.
This tasting was also unique in that it was held at a St. Louis distillery, Still 630. Dave Weglarz, owner and RCWS member, does a lot of great things with his expressions and is an overall darn nice guy. (I also hear he is a good dancer and likes long walks on the beach.) Anyway, having a tasting in a distillery is always the perfect environment!
Below are the expressions we tasted. We, of course, rated them against each other. They are listed from least favorite overall to most favorite overall, along with some tasting notes. BUT, all were good and are worth trying.
5th Place: Arran Amarone Wine Cask – 50% ALC – $62:
Best nose in the bunch, Lots of flavor, Bright and fruity, Very smooth, Cherry flavor on the finish.
4th & 3rd Place Tie: Jameson Cooper’s Croze – 43$ ALC – $62
Buttery nose, Good balance, Subtle wood taste, Smooth vanilla, Very light, Nice caramel, Clean finish.
4th & 3rd Place Tie: Highland Park Dark Origins – 46.8% ALC – $65
Light, Sweet nose, Great smoke taste, Peat is very balanced, Smooth, Light peat – perfect, Pleasant finish.
2nd Place: The Glenlivet Founders Reserve – 40% ALC – $42
Strong start, Taste of tropical fruit, Young, Hints of honey, Smooth on the palate, Hint of smokiness, Smooth yet short finish.
1st Place: Macallan Edition #2 – 48.7% ALC – $90
Sweet nose, Bight & crisp taste, Complex flavors, Great taste of wood and vanilla, High ALC is not overpowering, Long & pleasant finish, Awesome!
The Macallan was, by far, the favorite. They always put out a great product and with the acceptance of NAS by the whisky drinking public they are free to expand their list of great whiskies.