Thursday, December 5, 2019

Glenlivet New Fashioned

Hello everyone, today I am making a classic cocktail with a twist. It is called Glenlivet New Fashioned. The original recipe is the Classic bourbon Cocktail old fashioned which I have written in my blog as well. I got the Glenlivet New Fashioned cocktail kit in a sipping session that I went last month. So thought would be interesting to make it myself and present it here for you. The difference between them is that The New Fashioned uses Scotch(Glenlivet) whereas old Fashioned is made with bourbon So lets get started, I cannot wait.

Contents of the Glenlivet New Fashioned Cocktail kit

From left to right the recipe, 2 bags of raw sugar, A small bottle of Angostura Bitters, A bar spoon/muddler and a small bar towel, 50 ml of Glenlivet 14 whisky(not included) 

Step 1 Take a mini bottle of the Glenlivet whisky, one cup of ice and one empty cup

Step 2 Combine one pack of cane sugar, 3 dashes of Angostura bitters and whisky in the empty cup

Step 3 With the muddler end of the bar spoon lightly crush the sugar and stir to dissolve(This is where SJ's magic happens) 

Step 4 Pour the cocktail over ice, stir for 10 seconds and Enjoy!

Step 5 Admire the color, aroma of the finished product and savor it slowly

I absolutely enjoyed making and drinking The new fashioned. Hope you enjoyed as well and inspired to make it for you and your loved ones to enjoy.
Cheers ! and enjoy responsibly.
Not in the mood to read? Listen to my SingleMaltLives Podcast instead.

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Chivas Regal 12 Blended Scotch Whisky

"Prince of Whiskies" reads the product label of this classic Chival Regal 12 whisky which is for today's review. Chivas Regal needs no introduction to Scotch lovers.It is a global brand and one of the most famous blended Scotch Whiskies in the world. It sets the gold standard for luxury drinks and it's unrivaled quality stretches two hundred years back. It is a premium scotch with a versatile personality suitable for adults of all demographics.
I wanted to delve deeper to find out about this iconic brand. This is when one of the industry experts suggested me a book "A Double Scotch" which I thoroughly enjoyed reading recently. It explains about the business aspect of Scotch Business and I found it very unique as most other whisky books only talk about the technical aspects like the distillery etc. 

Vital Stats-
Chivas Regal 12 Blended Scotch Whisky
Price- $27.97 for 750ml
Age- 12 years,
Product of- Scotland
Region- Speyside
Distillery- Strathisla Distillery, Keith,Moray,Scotland
Awards Won- Gold 2015, Deluxe blend category, International Wine & Spirit Competition

Tasting info-
Serving Glass- Glencairn glass

Serving Style- Neat
Appearance- Tawny amber
Aroma- Honey & citrus, cinnamon spice as well
Flavor- Sweet honey with notes of butterscotch & hazelnut
Body- Medium
Finish- Long, sweet& smooth

SJ's Rating- Middle Shelf
It is an excellent and classic whisky, I thoroughly enjoyed it. I compared it with it's competitor Johnnie Walker Black which is similar in taste but found Chivas more smoother.This would be a good introductory whisky for those who have started liking Scotch to explore their palette. Since it is approachable and smooth it is suitable for the ladies as well.

Occasions Best Enjoyed- Easy all occasion drinking. Also good as a special gift to loved ones
Cocktails- None , meant to be sipped by itself or on the rocks.

Drunk humor is back..( I will keep this section consistent as most of us enjoy a good laugh πŸ˜ƒ)

Drunk in a Telephone Booth
A drunk went into a telephone booth and dialed at random.."Salvation Army" came the answer.
What do you do asked the man. "We save wicked men & women," came the reply.
"Well, save me a wicked women for Saturday night." πŸ˜ƒπŸ˜„πŸ˜ƒπŸ˜„πŸ˜„πŸ˜„

Happy Thanksgiving!. Enjoy Responsibly & CheersπŸ₯ƒπŸ₯ƒπŸ₯ƒπŸ₯ƒ
Not in the mood to read? Listen to my SingleMaltLives Podcast instead.

Thursday, November 21, 2019

Bombay Sapphire London Dry Gin Vapor Infused

Today I am reviewing gin for the first time in my blog. It is Bombay Sapphire London Dry gin-Vapor infused. Reads the product label, "Hand selected exotic botanicals" from a 1761 recipe. It comes in a solid light blue colored glass bottle and is very inviting. This is interesting, according to their website they take their botanicals very seriously and source it from ten different exotic locations from around the world. Following are the ingredients sourced-
1.Juniper Berries from Italy
2. Lemon Peel from Spain
3.Coriander from Morocco
4.Angelica(Root) from Saxony
5. Orris(Iris Root) from Italy
6.Grains of Paradise from West Africa
7.Cubeb berries from Java
8. Cassia Bark from Indo-China
9. Almonds from Spain10. Liquorice from China

Now it is time for the best part- the tasting,enjoy my notes below and sip along if you wish!

Vital Stats
Bombay Sapphire London Dry Gin-Vapor Infused 
Price- $1.99 for 50ml bottle
Age- Not applicable
ABV- 47%
Product of- England
Awards won- None found

Tasting info-
Serving glass- Glencairn whisky glass.
Serving style- Neat
Appearance- White, transparent(Only the bottle is blue the gin inside has no color)

Aroma- Various botanicals, Juniper is omnipresent, some vapor infused aroma
Flavor- Subtle sweet like a mouth freshener, clove.Smooth vapor infused flavor, juniper has well rounded effect not too sweet
Body- Medium , does not really apply to a gin
Finish- Elegant,spicy dry finish
SJ's rating-Middle Shelf
I am pleasantly surprised to how smooth it is even with a high ABV of 47%. Also it is not overwhelmingly sweet like other gins' and has a very pleasing mouthfeel.
Occasion best enjoyed- All occasions, summer time, day party
Suitable cocktails- Gin based cocktails

I enjoyed putting this together. Cheers! & Enjoy Responsibly. Not in the mood to read?listen to my SML Podcast instead!

Thursday, November 14, 2019

The Balvenie 12 Single Barrel

Fellow single malters πŸ™‚, you must have known by now that The Balvenie is the  love of my life..My absolute favorite being The Balvenie 14 Caribbean cask. Recently I tasted The Balvenie 12 Single Barrel First Fill. The label says "This bottle is one of no more than 300 drawn from a single cask".  "The majority of the casks used for maturing Scotch whisky are ex-bourbon barrels brought over from America. These barrels are made of a species of oak called Quercus alba, though most perhaps commonly known as oak. And when used for the first time to mature Scotch whisky, they are termed first fill". That makes me feel special and part of something that is truly unique in flavor and making.  I also wanted to try it out because of it's higher ABV of 47.8% to see how it stacks against the lesser counter parts. I thoroughly enjoyed this one.. tasting notes are quite interesting , enjoy!

Vital Stats-
The Balvenie 12 First Fill
Price- $69.99 for 750ml bottle
Age- 12 years
ABV- 47.8%
Region- Speyside
Distillery- The Balvenie Distillery, Dufftown Scotland
Award won- Gold Outstanding, Scotch Single Malt Speyside, International Wine & Spirits Competition

Tasting info-
Serving glass-Glencairn whisky glass

Serving style- Neat
Appearance- Light golden
Aroma-Highly aromatic oak, wiff of sweet bourbon as well
Flavor- The oak comes in strong, hints of sweet bourbon but does not over power the oak flavor
Body- Medium
Finish- Long,robust and smooth

SJ's rating- Top Shelf
It is top shelf no doubt, however when compared to other first fill like Glenlivet 12 this would be my second option. It does justice to the price with its amazing aroma, robust flavor but I feel it lacks the body and the appearance is a little light as well. I prefer darker colored whiskies as I drink the whisky first with my eyes then only with my mouth. It is just me :-)

Occasions Best enjoyed-  Connoisseur tasting, whisky flights. Would be a special gift for scotch lovers
Cocktails- Not meant for cocktails, enjoy it neat with few drops of water

Thursday, November 7, 2019

Glenlivet Sipping Sessions- 14 year old Cognac Cask Collection

I happened to be part of this amazing experience called Glenlivet Sipping Sessions recently. They released The Glenlivet 14 year old Cognac Cask Collection which I am reviewing in my blog today. Also, I will be sharing my experience about the sipping session and sharing pictures about this wonderful time with industry experts and single malt lovers.  
Glenlivet offers very limited runs of special editions of fourteen year old special casks. This 14 year old is finished in Cognac Cask making it distinctively smooth and pleasant a best of both worlds that is whisky and hint of cognac.

Vital Stats
Glenlivet 14 year old 
Price- $49.99 for 750ml bottle
Age- 14 year old
ABV- 40%
Region- Speyside
Distillery- The Glenlivet Distillery, Scotland
Awards won- None found but I give it a personal gold medal
Tasting info-
Serving glass- Whisky shot glass

Serving style- Neat and also as New Fashioned Cocktail
Appearance- Dark Amber
Aroma- Fresh vanilla, hints of white grape from Cognac cask
Flavor- Sweet, rich & velvety flavor
Body- Full bodied
Finish- Long & smooth
Occasion best enjoyed- I enjoyed it in Glenlivet Sipping session as a whisky flight
Suitable cocktails - New Fashioned, replacing bourbon with 14 year old Glenlivet

SJ's Rating- Top Shelf
It is a gem, perfect for my palette and as a staple whisky. It offers a robust flavor and the cognac barrel gives it an unmatched experience. 

Event Details and pictures 
Glenlivet Sipping sessions in partnership with The purple heart foundation

Ticket- $10( All proceeds help the purple heart foundation)
The cause- The purple heart Foundation raises money to fund programs and services across the country that support veterans and their families.
Venue- Peerspace loft,Dallas
Date/Time- Oct 24,2019 7pm-9pm

The entrance to Glenlivet Sipping Session @Dallas uptown
Beautiful Neon lighting welcome sign

Bartender in action as I started with a Glenlivet 14 neat
The host was very knowledgeable about Single Malt Whisky and got my questions answered πŸ˜ƒ

Her in depth knowledge transfer..A Double Scotch book she recommended 

Having a fun time ..the whole crew were so genuine and friendly..couldn't ask for a better time

A hearty steak at Perry's Steakhouse..what else after drinking like a fish to satisfy the hunger cravings

Bullet Rye Manhattan & Jameson on the rocks

Top it off with a heavenly cheesecake..I was in cloud nine!

I had an amazing time at the event. Hope you enjoyed reading it. Cheers! and enjoy responsibly.    Not in the mood to read, listen to my SingleMaltLives  podcast. 

Thursday, October 31, 2019

Highland Queen Majesty Sauternes Cask Finish

Highland Queen Majesty Sauternes Cask Finish is for today's review. The product story reads "Since 1961, Mary Queen of Scots has embodied the enduring and noble values, history and independent spirit of Scotland. Highland Queen Majesty Sauternes Cask Finish has been carefully selected from the the finest malts in Scotland to offer a distinctive and smooth whisky, for the enjoyment of all. The result we leave with confidence to your judgement". Let me see if it matches up to the legacy πŸ˜ƒ. Upon some research I found that the whisky comes from Tullibardine Distillery along with other distilleries for its blended expressions. Enjoy my tasting notes! 

Vital Stats-
Highland Queen Majesty Sauternes Cask Finish 
Price- $22.99 for 750ml bottle
Age- 12 years
ABV- 46%
Company-  Alexander Murray & Co Ltd
Region- Highland
Awards won- None I could find on the net.

Tasting info-
Serving glass- Glencairn whisky glass

Serving style- Neat
Appearance- Light Amber
Aroma- Pleasant aroma green apple, white grapes from sauternes cask, citrus & honey
Flavor- Intense oak flavor slightly sweet taste from the sauternes wine cask. Vanilla & honey notes
Body- Medium
Finish- Smooth, long and dry. Does not linger is mouth too long.

SJ's rating- Middle Shelf
I loved it for the intense and robust flavor like Glenlivet 12 First fill. It does not get the top spot for one reason.... the finish which is very short. However for the price, it is more than worth the money
Occasions best suited- For casual gatherings with friends. I enjoyed with friends while playing cards.

Cocktails- Not applicable. It does go well with club soda if it is too strong for some people.

Cheers! and enjoy responsibly. Not a big reader? Listen to my podcast

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Buffalo Trace Kentucky Bourbon

Buffalo Trace Bourbon..what can I say about was an unknown liquid for me until I tried it out not too long ago. Do not be fooled by the lower price tag, it packs a surprisingly delicious flavor which I am sharing today in my review. I have been emphasizing in my blogs that the price of whisky is not necessarily an indicator of it's flavor.Buffalo Trace is a perfect example of this. 
It has a timeless history and any words would not do justice to the impeccable craftsmanship behind their whiskey. According to their website... Buffalo Trace distillery opened way back in 1792(Oh my....) and for over 200 years it has been defined by dedication to one craft- making fine bourbon whiskey. That sums it up pretty well and I am attesting it's legacy in my blog. Honestly I would give it an honorary Top Shelf just for it's legacy. However, everyone has their own tastes so sharing my experience with this whiskey. Enjoy! 

Vital Stats
Buffalo Trace Kentucky Straight Bourbon
Price- $22.99 for 750ml (Pictured $4.29 for 50ml sampler bottle)
Age- N/A
ABV- 45%
Distillery/Region- Buffalo Trace Distillery Frankfort,Kentucy
Awards won- 2016 Double Gold, San Francisco World Spirits Competition among many others

Tasting info-
Serving glass- Glencairn whisky glass

Serving style- Neat
Appearance- Dark Amber
Aroma- Very pleasant and complex aroma of caramel, chocolate with hints of cinnamon, clove spices & mint
Flavor- Rich vanilla, sweet, spicy with toffee and citrus
Body- Medium
Finish- Incredibly long and smooth. Taste lingers in the mouth forever
Occasion best enjoyed- Outdoors like camping and a good gift for a bourbon lover. Suitable for all occasions.
Suitable cocktails-  Old Fashioned, Manhattan

SJ's rating- Top Shelf
Buffalo Trace is a hidden gem... a Rolce Royce of bourbons. It is smooth and delicious bursting with rich flavor. Highly recommended. With a robust 45% ABV, it packs a punch and knocks out competition with its unique flavor. It is now among my top go to bourbons like Makers Mark and Woodford Reserve.