Tag Archive: Jura


jura-tastival

Jura: Tastival (Scottish Island Single Malt Whisky: 14 Year: 51% ABV)

Visual: Bronzed gold.

Viscosity: Quite slow thick streaks.

Nose: Treacle toffee. Cinnamon. Honey. Cinnamon rolls. Light tar notes. Thick. Sugared orange. Stewed fruit. Water adds cinnamon pears.

Body: Strong. Alcohol presence. Orange liqueur. Spiced rum. Treacle toffee. Cinnamon. Water makes cinnamon pears. Slight charring. More water adds apples, a touch of salt. Vanilla toffee and treacle.

Finish: Malt chocolate and light oak. Spiced wine notes. Cinnamon and pepper. Light charring. Water adds treacle and chocolate liqueur. Light salted rocks.

Conclusion: Jura have been a go to whisky for me for a while now. Their entry level stuff is very nice, and generally not too expensive – while their Prophecy expression stands out as a great, complex peaty whisky. This is different again from those. The higher abv gives it a bigger, thicker character and a lot of room to roam.

This is a dark, rich expression with deep chocolate liqueur notes and light charring – all darker notes which calls to Bowmore Darkest or some of the Dalmore series for inspiration. It has that similar, very luxurious character, albeit with a strong alcohol punch if taken neat, and they are accentuated by a definite cinnamon sweetness and rum to red wine spiciness. It really, even when with the force of being neat, gives a decadent dark dessert feel. Death by chocolate meets cinnamon doughnuts.

Water soothes out the alcohol weight and gives hints of lighter notes hidden below it; Never huge, but there are feelings of subtle cinnamon pears and such like in there. Also water brings out, on the opposite side, subtle more traditional island characteristics – light salted rocks – again very minor, but gives it a grounding so it is not just a sweet, thick whisky.

Overall these just balance out an already very good experience – it gives hints of the more familiar expressions of Jura, but matched with that luxurious chocolate and cinnamon – making it like an island character backed dessert expression. Just enough added edge to make it unusual.

Very nice indeed, and probably now my tied favourite Jura with Prophecy.

Background: The 14 year is from a quick google that says the youngest spirit in this is 14 years. Anyway – this was my first tasting note done at The Hideout – a new whisky bar in Bath. Damn they have a nice selection – will try and take advantage of them to get some more unusual whisky tasting notes up on here. It is always nice to be able to try the more unusual stuff by the dram. This one is the Jura whisky done for the 2016 festival and has been aged in Palomino Fino, Amoroso and Apostoles sherry casks. Which actually goes beyond my knowledge of Sherry, so I will assume that is good.

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Jura: Elixir (Scottish Island Single Malt Whisky: 12 Year: 40% ABV)

Visual: Reddened bronze.

Viscosity: very fast thick streaks.

Nose: Thick sulphur style and pungent. Quite eggy. Almonds and marzipan. Sultanas. Smoke. Slight peat. Red wine and fruitcake. Water makes almonds and sulphur the main elements.

Body: Smooth and sweet. Marmalade and ginger. Beef broth. Caramelised fruit. Red wine. Water makes sweeter bringing out custard and red grapes.

Finish: Dried beef slices. Almond and raisins. Malt chocolate. Dry beef crisp dustings. Water adds glacier cherries and slight tar. Also banana oddly.

Conclusion:  Jura, like Caol Ila, seems to be a well placed spirit to survive many different interpretations. From the peated Superstition and Prophecy to this fruity number.

Up front you get a very sulphur and egg dominated aroma in that challenging island way, but even before you push past that to dive in and take a sip you get that light marzipan sweetness edging out to let you know you are in for something a bit different to that.

Thus we are given a hint of what I the mainstay of this whisky. A surprisingly sweet and nuanced Jura, with fruit, marzipan and almonds all backed by the smoke and weight Jura spirit brings. The two merge surprisingly well, and the sweetness and thickness make for an almost liquore like feel at times. A few drops of water does much to enhance this element.

The whisky feels spicy and complex. Again the mix of island style to marzipan and banana create such contrasting views that make the range stand out so much more. An impressive mix of elements that would be easy to make muddled and indistinct.

This is the heavy end of the dessert whisky, it has all the flavour for that style, but never loses its Jura roots or the punch that entails.  That makes it stand out a bit from the crowd. Smooth, heavy sweet and complex, I’d say you could do a hell of a lot worse than this one.

Background: I love little bottles of whisky. they give you chance to try out a wider range that a 70cl commitment does not. Therefore when I saw this 12 year of the always fun Jura range in Sainsbury I thought id give it whirl. I now find out that this bottle is exclusive to Sainsbury. Go figure. Anyway, Jura is a distillery that is always fun and while it does have island character it never brings it in too hard and heavy.

Brewdog: Paradox: Jura (Scotland: Imperial Stout: 15% ABV)

Visual: Black and nigh opaque. The head froths up nicely with a coffee brown colour, but quickly settles to a bare minimum. Just a ring of bubbles around the edges and a dusting over the middle.

Nose: Roasted nuts. Slight salty rock character. Ready salted crisps. Dry. Sickly toffee.

Body: Full bore. Smoke. Salt. Vanilla. Smooth texture with treacle toffee and sickly chocolate chew sweets.

Finish: Medicinal. Salt. Treacle. Bitter coffee. Raw cocoa. Slight thick alcohol feel, but fiery but viscous. Dry blueberry.

Conclusion: Jura is, for the most part mellow and smooth for an island whisky. Why is it then that any beers aged in its oaken casks always kick like an Islay bred mule?

Seriously, for its heavily salty and slightly medicinal character it brings to the fore you could swear it was from an Islay cask.

Now I will admit that’s more a musing than a conclusion, so let us move on to consider the beer itself. Nearly sickly sweet, the main body is a rich chocolate entity working against the island character. Rather than subtly balance the two it is more two titanic forces clashing and breaking against each other.

Definitely fun, if riding the sugar shock train just a little hard in flavour. Let’s face it when you have toffee, treacle, chocolate and vanilla you get the feeling it’s the kind of beer a burnt out alcohol Willy Wonka would turn out. Which would actually explain a lot about his chocolate factory really…

Unlike the similarly sweet Black Tokyo Horizon this does have the island salt character to at least contrast if not counterbalance the main flavour. It does still boarder on too sickly sweet though.  You do at least get an attempt at balance in the finish though. The dry coffee and salt leaves you parched and does make the sweetness of the next sip refreshing rather than just a continuation.

Overall, quite insane, unbalance and a crude but effective assault on the sense. Its not going to win awards for careful craftsmanship but does get by on sheer power of flavour alone.

Background: that really was a badly focused set of photos wasn’t it? Apologies. I have another bottle in the cupboard so I will try and put up a better one later if I get the chance.  Another in Brewdogs extensive set of whisky aged imperial stouts.  For this one however they have changed the recipe a tad, racking up the abv from a high 10% to an insane 15%.   Jura is a whisky that I quite enjoy and Brewdog as I always mention, are a brewery that I am not unbiased on.

Tasting Notes: Jura 10 Year

Jura 10 Year (Scottish Island Single Malt Whisky: 10 Years Old: 40% ABV)

Visual: Light varnished pine.

Viscosity: Slow to form irregular streaks.

Nose: Light salt, overripe banana, peat back. Slightly sweet – custard? Pineapple.

Body: Light warming peat that grows, matches with a light syrup sweetness. Custard creams. Strawberry and cheesecake with sprinkles.

Finish: Heavier salt, starts drying. Bitter charred oak, caramel, dry stones. Bitter chocolate and lemon.

Conclusion: This balances a stroke of wonderful peat and salt with a sweet dessert like base, a fantastic drink – more easy to enjoy that the superstition, but with less sheer force and complexity.

A brilliant almost lighter Islay like island whisky, but with a much larger sweet edge to compensate. For any fan of peated whisky this is a lighter dessert wine Islay mixed island whisky.
A cheery and full of character whisky

Jura Superstition: (Scottish Island Single Malt Whisky: No age statement: 43% ABV)

Visual: Dark amber, still and ready.

Viscosity: An odd mix of quick forming and slothish slow thick streaks.

Nose: Butterscotch, light peat and salt. Warming thick glucose and dry wood shavings. Enticing like a fire side. With water adds rich gingerbread and old school trips to Beamish. The peat becomes more evident.

Body: Light front then builds with burnt wood and a sharp alcohol sourness, Fresh cooked bread and sweet dew. A touch of salt. Water polarises the flavours with a sweeter front and heavier salt and rocks at the end

Finish: Salt and smoke. Light grassy and earth end. Bonfire remains. Lime dangles on the taste buds.

Conclusion: An island experience, brilliantly salty and smooth with a rich back against the harsh elements.

One of the whiskies I’ve tried that is better without the addition of drops of water. It’s a fine mix of age and youth, I feel my tasting notes do not properly capture the rich range felt within this drink.

Reassuringly salty and harsh yet easy to drink, it is rewarding and sums up the island character well.

My only comment against is that the recent Jura Prophecy is slightly superior, a similar drink but with lovely peat elements. However to try this against its successor seems slightly unfair and as itself it is a fine whisky.

(Thanks to the parents for many things, but in this case specifically for the kind gift of this whisky)

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