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Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Mackmyra First Edition Swedish Single Malt Whisky (US Release)

Mackmyra First Edition was indeed the first edition of Mackmyra to be released in the United States. And I don't believe it had a successor. It arrived with considerably less fanfare than every single malt dropped by every Pacific nation. It was bottled at 46.5%abv, unfiltered, uncolored and in a 1 liter bottle......and sold for less than $60 at many East Coast retailers. It's also tasty. Yet it didn't sell very quickly. Again, it wasn't marketed within an inch of its life; and since the distillery wasn't an employer of the late Jim Swan, it wasn't lavished with attention by whisky writers. So the US never got a Mackmyra sequel and all of that distillery's many bottlings stayed in Europe.

As mentioned earlier this week, the folks at Mackmyra like to experiment. They have warehouses in all sorts of environments. Big barrels, little barrels. They do some maturation in Swedish oak and use Swedish wine casks, in addition to utilizing classic whisky oaks and cask types. They use Swedish barley and Swedish peat. And they're owned by a cooperative. How this never became the official hipster whisky, I'll never know.

Distillery: Mackmyra Svensk Whisky
Region: Sweden
Type: Single Malt
Age: ???
Maturation: 94.6% Bourbon casks and 5.4% Swedish Oak, with 45% stored in 100-liter casks
Release Year: 2008-2009
Alcohol by Volume: 46.5%
Chillfiltered? No
Colorant added? No
(Sample from one my event bottles)

Its color is straw. The nose's early notes include saline, wheat bread, grape candy and cinnamon. Then cardamom, yeast, walnuts, jasmine and bubblegum. It sounds messy but actually comes together well. The palate is thick and creamy, with toasted oak spice on top and dried herbs below. Malty and warm, with a touch of mocha. Gradually develops a Worcestershire sauce-type savory note. It finishes mmmmmalty. Slightly ashy. Toasted oak spices and a bit of vanilla ice cream.

WITH WATER (~40%abv)
The nose opens up nicely with plums, orange candy, and lime juice. Then vanilla and eucalyptus. More toasted oak and savory notes in the palate. Some salt and malt, with a slight phenolic note. It finishes with dried herbs, sea salt and semi-sweet chocolate.

I've had this whisky on five occasions and have enjoyed every time, though this round was the best, especially because this was the first time I'd diluted it. As well as it performs neatly, it improves with a little water. It really is a pleasant drink, perky on the the nose and simply solid in the mouth. If you can still find a bottle on the shelves here in The States for less than $60, I do recommend it.

Availability - Very scarce in the US
Pricing - somewhere between $45 and $70
Rating - 85 (two points up from my review 5 years ago)