...where distraction is the main attraction.

Wednesday, November 3, 2021

Two more North British single grains! Yay!

After Monday's glory, I decided that the second and third North Britishes didn't require separate posts. So a Taste Off was arranged. Nikka From the Barrel was used to test my nose and palate beforehand, which isn't fair, but I'm in charge here.

Today's two brawlers are:

North British 16 year old 1997 Signatory, cask 246280 for Binny's, weighing in at 57.2%abv. Let us all thank one Florin (a prince) for this sample! Thank you, Florin.


North British 25 year old 1989 Sovereign, cask HL11602 for K&L, weighing in at 57.5%abv. This may have come into my possession via an LA Scotch Club event led by one David OG. Thank you, David OG.

North British 16 year old 1997 Signatory, cask 246280 for Binny's, 57.2%abv

The nose is kinda wild. It starts off with flowers, metal, apple juice and plaster, then it shifts to flower kiss candy and pear-scented candles. It gets synthetic once diluted to 46%abv, off-gassing circus peanuts and burnt carpet.

The palate is......palatable, though very sweet. There are dried apricots and flower blossoms up front, hints of dates, clove and tart citrus in the back. It's much less palatable at 46%abv as it turns very bitter and tannic.

It finishes with brown sugar and hints of lemon. Some tannic rum in the background. But it's wincingly tannic at 46%abv.

Not bad at full strength, this North British surprised me. I'd take it over Monday's 50yo any day. It still feels closer to rum than "scotch", but nobody's perfect. I wonder what it would be like in cocktails, were it not a horror show when diluted. Perhaps it would be fun to blend?

Rating - 81 (when neat)

North British 25 year old 1989 Sovereign, cask HL11602 for K&L, 57.5%abv

The nose begins with lots of sugar, something savory and something industrial. Then it gradually focuses on mandarin oranges, lemon candy and a hint of cassis. Diluting it to 46%abv simplifies and redirects the nose towards roses and limes.

It's another sweetie, with a combo of wheated bourbon, lemons and a hint of molasses in the palate's foreground. The background reads a bit perfumy, or is it a combo of talcum powder and potpourri? It's still pretty floral and sweet at 46%abv, with hints of oranges around the edges.

It finishes with sweet pears and honey, some lemony tartness and tannins in the back. But it's really really really sweet and floral when reduced to 46%abv.

This one, full of flowers, is prettier than the other. It shows its corn roots (if that's possible with 94.5%abv spirit), leaning towards Weller at times. It also doesn't crumble with dilution, which was much appreciated. Can't say I'd run out to buy something like this, nor offer up raves about its complexity, but I would drink it again, which is something I rarely say about a single grain.

Rating - 83

These two were close to peak grain, so I'm happy to depart from this genre with this post. Toodle-oo, Single Grains! May you find homes on other blogs.