I missed out on the English Whisky Company at the Whisky Show due to extreme excitement and my inability to pass by other stands without embarking on a full vertical. In other words I didn’t get round to them (and they were pretty busy). So when bottle swapping with Steve Prentice (of Somerset Whisky Blog) I jumped at the chance of a drop of his bottle of Chapter 7.
This whisky is a small batch release, released every year and sells out immediately at the distillery. My immediate thoughts were to investigate and secure a vertical tasting.
2010 – From the picture I think Master of Malt have it here, £75
2011 – Welly have it, here, £62
2012 – Can’t find it
2013 – Welly have it, here, £42
In between 2011 and 2013 the bottle shifts to the “standard” cream label and bottle shape, rather than the whisky decanter seen from 2011 back. Its the same stuff though – the same expression. I’ll get a bottle of the 2013 on my next order from Green Welly and report back.
English Whisky Company Chapter 7, Rum Cask, 46% A⊕
Nose – Fresh rum and raisin, wax, pear and furniture polish. Really delightful, elegant, floral nose. Edge of blue cheese and a recently cleaned community hall. Clean, elegant, floral and very good.
Body – Massive belt of green apple, sharp and oddly citrus wooded. Not refreshing, but very herbal, very structured and elegant.
Finish – Sweet note comes through, then fizzing bitterness but never unbalanced. Quite a feat of near misses that adds up to a beautiful, remarkable whisky.
What’s not good about it: Challenging (makes it hard to wholeheartedly recommend this to people), a bit odd (not always what you fancy)
What’s good about it: Remarkable, fresh, loads of structure, rich, complicated, balanced, never falters, changes constantly, grows and grows on you.