Spencerfield Spirits Company: Sheep Dip: Blended Malt (Scottish Blended Malt Whisky: 40% ABV)
Visual: Deep gold.
Viscosity: Fast thick streaks.
Nose: Honey and peach. Smooth. Light alcohol. Smoke. Slight chalk. Water adds pencil shavings.
Body: Custard and peach. Honey. Rising peat and beef. Slight salt. Thin back. Smooth. Sweet grapes. Apricot. Water brings out more grapes.
Finish: Salt. Golden syrup. Slight smoke. Slight chalk. Slight malt drinks. Raisins and Madeira. Slight caramel. Water adds grapes.
Conclusion: Oh, so close. So very close. This has a lot going for it. Despite its heavy duty sounding name, the smoke and peat brought into play in this is carefully measured – subtlety adding to rather than overpowering the sweet smooth body. For the most part the emphasis is on the fruity, easy drinking body – with a few salty, peaty notes rounding it out. The sweet base does a lot to give enough flavour for this to work – a sweet mix from custard to caramel. So, decent amount of variety, balanced well.
So, what does it get wrong? Well it feels like it could do with a few more points of abv, or a thicker choice of whisky in it, just something to give it a bit more grip. Oddly enough, up front it actually has the grip – and up front is usually where things have their thin point. Instead, here it is the back end to finish that feels too light. Water adds a bit of green fruit, but keeps the slight lightness. The main change is the smoke feels a bit more present in the finish.
So, despite that flaw the flavour is well balanced for sipping, and it comes in at a decent price. The extra peat gives a different style to the usual sipping whisky, without harming the ease of drinking.
So, a bit light but not bad all things considered.
Background: Second of the two pack of Spencerfield Spirits Company whiskies I picked up recently – this one the blended malt of the batch – made up of 16 different single malts. This was grabbed from Independent Spirit before Christmas, and drunk while listening to even more music from Grimes. Yes I am listening to her a lot. Good stuff. Not much more to say, mainly grabbed as I keep an eye out for decent whiskies that are on the cheaper end of the spectrum. Prices are going up a lot these days.