As any true whisky lover will attest, when it comes to whisky distillation, you either have it, or you don’t. Many have tried to make Scotch whisky, and many have failed. For the select few who have succeeded, you’ll know just how rewarding it is to pour your life, heart, and soul into something and create something so magical and so delicious.
Phil and Simon Thompson know all too well how that feels. Not content with running one of the world’s most successful whisky bars, they swapped the high streets Dornoch for the rugged Highland countryside and set up shop at the Dornoch Castle Hotel, operating a hugely successful distillery.
Following a successful crowd-funding campaign in 2016, the Thompson brothers were finally able to realise their dreams and create a selection of single malt whiskies, as well as gin and blended malt.
The creative indie bottlers have produced a selection of delicious tipples over the years, yet their 6-Year-Old Blended Whisky in particular, has proved to be a real crowd favourite.
What is blended whisky?
Blended whisky, as the name implies, is a blend of different types of whisky. You can have blended malt whisky made by combining single malt whiskies together from different distilleries. You’ve also got blended grain whisky made by combining single grain whiskies together from different distilleries. Finally, you’ve got blended whisky, which is made by blending together malt and grain whiskies.
Many centuries ago, when glass was expensive, people would take their empty bottles to a distiller who would top it up with whisky from a cask. As the cask emptied, it would be topped up with whatever whisky was laying around, resulting in a mixture of flavours, notes, and aromas.
Because the burn from Scotch whisky was so harsh for most people, it was sometimes diluted down with a weaker grain whisky. Grocers discovered that if grain whisky was mixed with single-malt, it would produce a smoother, more elegant and rich whisky that was easier for everyday people to drink and enjoy.
Obviously there is way more history than that, but that gives you a rough idea of what blended whisky is.
Matured in a combination of first-fill sherry hogshead casks and refill casks, this blended whisky from Phil and Simon Thompson is fruity, aromatic, spicy, and dangerously moreish.
At 46% ABV, it is not to be taken lightly. It’s a tipple that’s very smooth at first, but don’t be fooled, the burn will get you afterwards.
This non-chill filtered, naturally amber coloured whisky can be enjoyed neat, or in a cocktail, as it makes a great Old Fashioned.
On the nose you will immediately detect strong toffee notes, with dark berries, miso, and a hint of caramel.
On the palate you should taste more toffee fudge notes, closely followed by Jamaican ginger cake, buttered fruit loaf, spicy plum jam, maple and toasted cinnamon with a hint of oak lingering in the background.
The finish is smooth but lingers offering medium spice notes, nutmeg, orange peel, and a hint of dark chocolate.
If you’re looking for a blended whisky such as this offering from Thompson Bros, or any other number of award-winning or limited-edition whiskies, be sure to visit https://greatdrams.com/ and see what they have available.
Here you’ll find a selection of rare, limited-edition, and award-winning whiskies to suit all palates and all budgets.
Whether you’re looking to invest in whisky, a bottle to treat somebody special, or simply find a sipper to enjoy in an evening, Great Drams have got you covered.