Suffice to say, being hungover the next day was worth it.
But I’m getting a hold of myself. And ahead of myself. Both at the same time. It’s hard to type with just one hand.
So, what is up with Speyside 2007 The Cooper’s Choice? If, like me just a year ago, you had not had anything from the Speyside distillery, you’d think this was either a blend (which it is not) of Speyside only malts, or you’d think it was a distillery that didn’t want their name out.
Unfortunately you’d be wrong, and would hate yourself for it for years to come, embarrassed so much you’d drink only water and squeak to communicate.
The Speyside distillery, located in Speyside, is a very small distillery that brings out a variety of blends as well as their single malt under the names “Speyside” and “Drumguish”. It was founded in 1962, as such quite young.
So come out of the shadows, because now you know all about this tiny distillery. And if you forget, IT’S BACK IN THE HOLE FOR YOU!
Ahem. So most people will most likely have something from them in an IB. Actually that’s the only way I’ve ever had it, and in this case there is no exception. So let’s see how The Cooper’s Choice did in choosing a barrel, shall we?
Age: 9 years
Cask Types: American Oak with a Sherry finish
Colour: 5Y 9/4
Nose: Grain, pineapple, black pepper, vanilla, strawberry, butter, malt
Light, very grain forward. It’s young. We can tell because there’s an age statement. Also due to the strong, peppery notes, grain notes, and lots of malt.
I’m impressed. This has some interesting notes for a young age. It’s not too brash, big, or crazy unique. But the bourbon and sherry casks are well represented.
Taste: Lemon, malt/chocolate, pepper, green apple, brown sugar
More malt. Almost chocolatey in flavour. Still young with crisp notes and some brown sugar.
I wish it was stronger personally. Not that I’m giving them heck for 46%; that’s a fine alcohol content in this day and age of lower and lower ones and ridiculous taxation in Canada.
That all said, it was quite light.
Finish: Rich caramel, lemon, fennel, Malteasers, oak, grassy, coal
Alright this is where it loses me, and I feel somewhat torn on it. I love the initial rich caramel, lemon, and fennel notes. If it ended there, I’d be able to say this was simple but okay.
Then there’s this Malteasers, oak, and general rough, earthy note that I can’t really enjoy. Well, I could, but that would take some electro shock therapy and I’m not doing that again. They said I was sane now.
Conclusion: An interesting malt. First off, for me at least, I haven’t had many young Scotches, unless they are in blends. So I really like this experience.
And as far as a young malt goes, this hits the right notes. Lots of malt, grain forward but not overly so, and good citrus notes.
Is it perfect? Oh, heck no. It’s simple, has a light nose, and the finish has the rougher notes I associate with a young malt (too much earth). All in all, I think this may not be for me, but that doesn’t mean it’s bad. I think it’s a must try to Whisky Nerds.
Scotch review #493, Speyside review #146, Whisky Network review #804