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Sunday, 18 December 2011

The Twelve Drams Of Christmas - Part Seven


After Olly Smith's brace of liquid beauties, we bring you three cracking suggestions from arguably the most respected whisky writer on the planet and all-round raconteur, sartorial sage and friend of this website, Mr Dave Broom.

Dave has been busy working on a brand new whisky education concept - the World Masterclass. Consisting of a number of online lessons and DVDs, the comprehensive training programme aims to enrich users with a new level of knowledge about whisky production. Sounds like a cracking idea to us. You can get more info about the World Masterclass by visiting:


Now, Dave has more pressing this to tell you about - namely his choice of festive drams!!

"I've mulled this over along with some suitably seasonal spices (for the annual Christmas Confusion Dram). This is a season of pickled walnuts and walks on the seashore, nose being nipped by the frost, head being nipped by the previous night's festivities. Outdoors, I'd go smoky for the hip flask - Bowmore Tempest or Ardbeg Alligator - but when safely ensconsed once more in Broom Towers it is something richer, fruitier, thicker, I'd reach for. Bring me something to warm the toes, to bring a Claus-like ruddiness to the cheeks, bring me Redbreast 12yo cask strength say I and make it a large one!'

Splendiferous choices, I think you'll agree.

Ardbeg Alligator – Committee release – 51.2%

Nose: Immediate spicy/ fruity notes, with rolled oak shavings, BBQ charcoal, stewed apples, white pepper and hints of strong tea and fresh bourbon. With a dash of water the whisky really comes alive with wonderful rich vanilla tones, chocolate orange notes and hints of copper.

Palate: Big, resonant and dry, leading into more of the chocolate orange notes, sweet vanilla, hints of Five Spice and more stewed apple. Then the smoke arrives, soft, aromatic and gentle at first, giving this a superb complexity.

Finish: The sweet vanilla develops alongside the soft smoke for a very lengthy and pleasing finish.

Red Breast - 12 Years Old - Cask Strength Edition - 57.7%

Nose: This high strength dram makes its presence known immediately. It has a firey top note, which dies away quickly to reveal notes of fresh plums, a little dustiness, some clean linen, dessicated coconut and a lingering creaminess, akin to dairy fudge.

Palate: Powerful and coating, the tongue gets the first blast of wonderful sweetness, more of the dairy fudge, followed by some cornflake notes, creamy vanilla, golden syrup, a deft hint of floral apple peel (Pink Lady?) and some black cherries.

Finish: Lengthy and creamy, with the emergence of the apple again on the death.

Join us soon for part eight and some wonderful choices of dram from a very aptly named band!!