I have been testing and writing about an American Whiskey or Bourbon every month for the last two and a half years, but slowly I am running out of affordable bourbons available in SA to taste and write about. I might have to switch over the Irish whiskey in a month or 2. Anyway, this week I am opening my first Koval, the Koval Bourbon whiskey. It is available in SA through WhiskyBrother or Aficionado’s and a new distillery. Both to my collection and in age.
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I always look forward to last weekend in May. This is usually when the world celebrates Ardbeg Day. Ardbeg day started in 2012 and this annual event has been filled with fun and whisky every year since. With loud fanfare, a new limited Ardbeg release is launched and the day is spent tasting and appreciating Ardbeg around the world. From New Zealand and Australia, South Africa, Europe and the USA, special Arbeg themed events turn the day into a world wide party.
The year 1795 was a busy year. Wars started and ended, treaties were signed, country debts were paid, Hayden released his 102 ’nd Symphony in B and Thomas Seddal harvested a 8.3-kg potato from his garden in Chester, England. Funny all the things that history captures as important at the time. This was also the year that Jim Beam was founded by a group of German farming immigrants. Jacob Beam noticed how fertile the Kentucky region was for cereal farming and he grew corn and grains which he eventually used in his whiskey.
The Bushmills 16 yo is probably one of the dustiest bottles in my collection. I have had this bottle for more than 8 years and although we have tried it a few times, I have never written about it. With all the new whisky arrivals, it got moved right to the back of my whisky cupboard and in December, while sorting and organizing, I stumbled across it again. So it made it to my tasting list early in 2017.
New world whiskies are always a treat. I enjoy exploring all the different world whiskies, sometimes more than the Scottish ones. With Scottish whiskies, you know what you can expect… a peaty Islay, a smoky Highland or a sweeter Speyside. But with world whiskies, the lines are much less defined. Opening up a dram from the ‘New Whisky World’ is very much like opening a lucky packet. You are not sure what you are going to get. Something delicious or “what were they thinking?”.
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