Blending and vatting your own (malt) whisky. Homeblends, tasting notes, tips, tricks and ramblings.

Category: Homeblends

Homeblend 17: Double Whinnie

Yes, I know, i’ve been gone for a while. I love you too, I’ll never leave you again and let’s get to the drinking, shall we? Actually, I’ve been working on another whisky related project (my dutch visitors may know it: WhiskyVinder), which has been taking up a lot of my spare time. As a result I’ll be posting a little more infrequently here, but the upside is my experimentation is going on at the same pace, so you will be seeing only the cream of the crop (and occasionally, for comic relief, the bottom of the barrel). Right, this week I have two variations on a theme. Both are based […]

Homeblend 16: Laphrelgin QC

‘Hello peatiness my old friend, I’ve come to taste of you again…’ (from ‘The Smell of Silence’ – MacSimon and McGarfunkel). It has been a little while since I tried blending with peated whisky (and those earlier attempts were… less than sucessful). This week I will present you with two quite different blends using two quite different peated whiskies. Kicking off is Laphroaig QC, which is a full-bodied and fairly complex whisky in its own right. In the past it has proven a fickle component, turning bitter easily and generally overpowering most blend-partners. For this new attempt I have selected Glen Elgin as the major component. I had good hopes […]

Homeblend 15: Dal Elgin

The second fruit of the Dalwhinnie testblends is this: Dal Elgin. And fruit is right, since any blend with Glen Elgin in it will invariably have sweet candy-like fruit in it no matter what partners you throw at it. This makes Dal Elgin a very useful blending malt: like peated whisky and the Deanston Virgin Oak I featured a few blends back it never fails to impart its character on a blend. Even better, whereas peated whisky seems to behave oddly with certain other malts, Dal Elgin just works. If all of it is suppressed, there’s still a hint of liquid fruit candy in the background somewhere. So, let’s see what it […]

Homeblend 14: Dalmorangie

In the Dalwhinnie testblends last week I managed to find two blends which looked decent enough to let marry for a bit. One of them was Dal Elgin, which I will review later this week. The first and (on first face) most promising one was this: Dalmorangie. Unmarried it had a buttery, caramelized sweetness to it which made it quite yummy indeed. But, as we’ve seen several times already on this blog, blends transform when married, emphasising some aspects of the original taste and suppressing others. So let’s see what happened here, shall we?

Homeblend 13: The Dalwhinnie Testblends

Here’s another post to sate your lust for the blend. This time I’ll be chronicling a few testblends I did last night, so in contrast to most of the blends I talk about on this blog, these are unmarried and more or less freshly poured (I let them sit with a cover on the glass for 30 mins before tasting, but that’s it). Dalwhinnie 15yo is a subtly flavoured single malt, so I chose three more or less subtle malts to partner it with: Glenmorangie 10yo, Clynelish 14yo and Glen Elgin 12yo. My expectations beforehand were that the resulting blends would be rather similar, with differences in the nuances, but […]

Homeblend 12: The F-Bomb

There’s two ingredients for this  blend: First, I like to one-up people. Second, I saw some tasting notes describing Glen Elgin 12yo as ‘obscenely fruity’. Put those ingredients together and you get me trying to make Glen Elgin fruitier. Is this a good idea? Probably not, but it should be fun! First, I’ve added the Fruitifier™: Elijah Craig. Then, to give it another little kick, a dose of Deanston Virgin Oak, which I hope will make a marriage between the other two because of it’s single malt spirit and bourbon-y production in virgin oak casks.

Homeblend 11: Elijah Clyne

While doing this blog, two repeat offenders have arisen from amongst the ranks. Both Elijah Craig 12yo and Clynelish 14yo have proven themselves excellent blend-participants, but for very different reasons. Elijah Craig, being a bourbon, has a very powerful taste and (like peated whiskies) is best used in moderation. What it does best is add orange (peel) and vanilla notes. I like to think of it as a finisher (you add just a splash to complete a blend). Clynelish on the other hand is quite the opposite: it works best in larger amounts, imparting a mellow quality and waxy mouthfeel and finish to whatever blend it finds itself in. As you probably […]

Homeblend #10: Glen Morpeatie

Continuing on my ‘peated’ theme this week, I present unto you: ‘Glen Morpeatie’ (pun most defnitely intended). This blend has a base of Glenmorangie, and adds Islay malts Coal Ila and Laphroaig as the peated components (Coal Ila being relatively mildly peaty and spicy and Laphroaig adding mainly powerful peat-smoke). To tone the peat back just a little bit and improve the mouth-feel, the last component is trusty old Clynelish. What I’m going for here is a whisky not unlike the Laphroaig QC itself: peated, but round. Success would be if the roundness could slightly overshadow the peat. Well, after marrying for 5 days, let’s taste it and find out!

Homeblend #9: The Clydefrog

I like peated whisky. I also like blending whiskies. So, one of the first things I did when I started blending was try out different blends containing peated whiskies. It turns out peat and smoke are flavours which are hard to work with. If you use just a little it’s not so bad: you get some smoke in the nose and finish and maybe a bit of peat and spice in the taste. Really good if you want to enhance a whisky, but not really peaty. When using larger amount of peated whisky, one of two things tends too happen: either the peated whisky completely and utterly overwhelms the other […]

Homeblend #8: The Meady Blues

Sometimes everything just works. You have an idea which seems decent, you act on it and the result is better than even you expected. You find yourself baffled by this thing you have created. It is no longer a collection of parts, it has become a truly new thing. It is… alive. ALIVE! It is one such Frankensteinish moment I wish to share with you today. Far from a monster, The Meady Blues is actually quite heavenly (which is why I named it after the famed Norse nectar of the gods). It began as an idea: what if I could combine the best parts of two previous blends: the beeswax […]