Today we’re treated to a couple of drams from Daftmill, the fiercely sought after Lowlands farm distillery.
Daftmill Unofficial Fans Group Bottling
This is pretty awesome bottle. We’ll let Daftmill explain this themselves..
This bottling is for the members of the Facebook group Daftmill Distillery (Unofficial fans group), those who have supported the distillery since before the first bottle was flipped at auction. Its purpose is to reward the patience and perseverance of those who may have been unsuccessful or unlucky in the past and enable them to get their hands on a bottle of Daftmill. Long may you continue to open your bottles, drink our drams, swap samples or argue over whether it is any good at all? But to taste the whisky you first have to open the bottle.
Honey and hay. There's some toasted malt in here, lightly roasted coffee and a little fresh soil. There's also some synthetic sugar and wet paper. We also get some poached pears in champagne and a touch of menthol. A pleasant nose without too much alcohol pushing through.
It's very fruity, think red apple, peach and a little lychee drizzled in honey. There's damp hay and Madeleine cakes. The alcohol is present and showing a slight bitter oak, but the medium length finish is overtaken by sweet vanilla cream. There's also a warming cinnamon/clove note at the end of the finish.
Nose (with water)
Lots of vanilla initially, followed by some custard cream biscuits and a touch of sugary cornflakes. There's actually some milkiness in there too - maybe we're now at the breakfast table? There's worst things to drink at breakfast time! The reduced nose is a little simple, a bit too sweet and and a little too creamy for us.
Palate (with water)
Similar to the reduced nose, the palate has become a lot sweeter, with profiteroles drizzled in caramel. There's a distinct woodiness that comes with a bitter lemon pith taste which we're not the biggest fans of. The finish is still medium length but with a touch more citrusy zing.
It's a nice dram, no doubt about it, but it’s maybe a little simple and maybe a little pricey. A lot of the complexity was lost when we added water so we'd advise against doing this. We're really looking forward to seeing a slightly older Daftmill as we feel it has the potential to be incredible, but for us this lacks a bit of body, mouthfeel and interest.
Daftmill 2008 The Whisky Bars of Scotland
Price: £10 per 30mls
This first fill ex-Bourbon barrel was filled on the 9th December 2008 and matured for 11 years before being bottled at 55.5%. It is only available for sale at whisky bars in Scotland, and only by the dram.
There’s clean scents of vanilla, grass, malt and walnuts. It's really quite sweet on the nose, reminding us of a homemade cream sponge cake - the sugar isn't artificial which is nice. There's a woodiness in the background too, more of a walk in the forest rather than old musty casks. Finally, we're also getting a bit of lemon zest and Albariño wine.
Not what we were expecting at all based the nose - it's much fruiter, maybe like panatone, orange sponge with some candied orange peels. There's a lot of cakeiness, orange blossom water and a few raisins sprinkled in too. It's quite drying on the mouth, and the alcohol is just a little much. The finish is medium length with a dry oakiness that lingers a little longer.
Nose (with water)
Now we're in a French pastry shop, nose fully in a bowl of fresh custard, with croissants and pain au chocolat's baking in the oven behind us. Lovely sweet vanilla and a touch of toasted coconut flakes appear too.
Palate (with water)
This is now a bottle of Cointreau orange liqueur, albeit one that has been made into a cocktail with some added brown sugar and a touch of pepper spice. The water has really helped to mellow some of that rough alcohol bite, and sweeten up the palate to get a bit closer to what we found on the nose.
For us it was quite a jump from the sweet, vanilla nose to the woodier, rich orange flavour. It's quite full flavoured and rich for a young whisky but there's a harshness to the alcohol and the finish isn't quite as long or pleasant as we'd hoped. Much better with water in our opinion. Overall a good dram, but a few more years to mellow the alcohol would take it to the next level.
- 10 - Perfection. A whisky that we’ll remember forever.
- 9 - Amazing. We’d pay through the nose for a bottle.
- 8 - Great. Pick this up at RRP.
- 7 - Good. Happy to have a dram or two but wouldn’t buy a bottle.
- 6 - Passable. Would accept a dram, but wouldn’t seek it out.
- 5 - Poor. Would drink if it was the only option.
- 4 - Bad. Maybe it can be saved by ginger beer?
- 3 - Awful. It can't be saved by ginger beer.
- 2 - Pour it out
- 1 - We’ve never tried a whisky rated this low and hopefully never will.
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