A Whiskey Recommendation

At the annual family Mid-autumn Festival gatherings/BBQs several bottles of whisky usually appear (the contents of which subsequently quickly disappear), and last night that happy tradition continued. A couple of bottles of Kavalan Solist Vinho Barrique began the proceedings. Cask strength at 57.1%. Non-chill filtered and no color added. No age statement, but that’s not really much of a concern with Kavalan, as the climate here facilitates such rapid maturation (10-15% lost through evaporation annually! Dave Broom’s observation re Kavalan “…you can almost see the whisky evaporating from the casks, and hear the choirs of angels carousing tipsily in the heavens above.”). Lovely deep copper/ruby color from the casks – American oak wine casks (not ex-bourbon for a change!) which have contained both white and red wines and have gone through a shave-toast-rechar process. As I mentioned, cask strength, so I’d usually add a little water after the first taste, but it was so smooth and delicious, with no burn from the high abv, that I had a couple of glasses at full strength first, followed by a couple more with a splash of water to open things up. Lots of vanilla and fruit, exquisite mouth feel, another ‘chewy’ one :slight_smile: Slightly difficult to concentrate on further complex notes, which were clearly there, because a.) lots of smoke from BBQ b.) the nature of the celebration required a certain amount of ‘going with the flow’ and drinking with friendly relatives at enthusiastic speed c.) taste buds being bombarded by culinary delights from the grill. Both bottles were empty by mid-evening, and we proceeded on to a further couple of Kavalans, Peaty Oak, 50%, which was good, but for me not as outstanding as the Solist, and then the Distillery Select 40%, which was fine too. Great night.

The Solist Vinho Barrique is on my shopping list now and I look forward to savoring it more slowly next time. Happy Moon Festival!


That Kavalan Vinho Barrique story brought a tear to my eye. Was the event located at a restaurant or in a house or out on a street?

Voted Number one in the world by those that matter a few years back.


Was at a house. Yes… I recall it winning that award. It seems to be more readily available now.

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I was wondering about that. I tried to buy it two or three summers in a row, before heading to Canada, and it was never available or had a several week/month waiting list. Haven’t tried lately.

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I’ve seen it at a couple different places recently, I think you’ll have a pretty good chance of finding it.


Yeah, seems likely - but it’s at a price point that matches “Ah, here’s a nice gift for my father’s birthday (and he’s incidentally just helped pay for our tickets to Canada)”, and not really a price point for “something to swig on my own at night”.

Hmm. I was hoping to buy a Lego pirate ship set this month. Lego or Kavalan? Or, more likely, “Good evening dear, remember how it’s our turn to treat my family for a nice dinner?”

(And no, the in-laws have zero appreciation of whiskey, so they are NOT getting any of a Kavalan bottle! Not praising or shaming them - just pointing out it’d be a waste.)


You forgot ‘boss’

Available for $3250 at 酒條通.

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Something I’ve been discovering over this holiday is… whisky and pomelo really complement each other nicely… I’m loving sherry-finished whisky with mouth-watering juicy and fragrant pomelo. Try it!


Taste pairing! I recently did some of that myself. This whisky is decent enough but I found it not as sweet as I wanted and bit more spicy on the finish that what I was really after. We had some of this dark chocolate from Costco sitting around. Bada boom bada bing. It was wonderful.

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Speyside, can’t go wrong, figuratively.

I agree - chocolate with whisky is wonderful… a double dose of guilty pleasure! Good dark chocolate, with a hint of orange or salt seems to work for my taste buds… heavenly :slight_smile:

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I’ve grabbed this Japanese Suntory a couple times recently, and both times did not have a good feeling the next morning. But I’m still giving it a chance.

That’s my bro in law’s go to whisky. It’s been a while but I don’t remember the hangovers being an issue.

So what was the impact of Covid on these islands and on the whisky they produce?

These three important whisky islands – Arran, Islay, and Jura – were completely sealed off during the British lockdown. The only ferries that arrived were delivering supplies (99% of what sustains the islanders arrives by boat).

The only people allowed off-island were those with medical emergencies.

As a result there were no cases of Covid-19 on the whisky islands, even though Glasgow and Cumbria on the mainland nearby were badly hit.

That is not to say the islands didn’t suffer, however. As non-essential industries, all distilleries in Scotland were obliged to close by March 29, 2020.

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I’m curious to hear how this tastes.

Metallica infused whiskey “sounds” good :rofl:

Music was “used to enhance Metallica’s latest “Sweet Amber.””

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Reminds me of the Trooper Iron Maiden beers.