Finally got our hands on the tasty little blend David OG and I tried on our trip to Scotland. While visiting A.D. Rattray they gave us a sneak peak of this delicious combo featuring four single casks of sherry-aged Bowmore, Benriach, Balblair, and Auchentoshan - all either 19 or 20 years old. While this is a "blend" there is no grain whisky within it, but apparently the term "vatted" malt is no longer acceptable. I'll tell you this however - this whisky DESTROYS any other old school blend on the market right now. As you can see from the amount missing in the top of the bottle, the staff really enjoyed this one. The flavors are classic and bold - hints of richness from the sherry, vanilla, and just the faintest touch of smoke from the Bowmore likely. Basically it just tastes like Scotch - like really, really, really good Scotch. It's also done at cask strength so adding an ice cube just puts you right where you need to be. I had too much of this last night so I was not where I needed to be, but sometimes that happens.
While this is not quite available yet (we should see it next week) I was able to get an advance bottle of Dave Smith's new Firelit release while I was at St. George distillery. The former two releases were made with Blue Bottle and Weaver's coffee giving them a bold, but traditional flavor. This batch however was made with Verve coffee from Santa Cruz and they chose a far more interesting roast. This new Firelit is more for the coffee geeks than the spirits nerds. Lot's of earthy, spicy, fruity notes in this coffee which is not as dark or rich as its predecessors. Because of its more rustic flavor, Dave decided not to use the Chardonnay brandy he had used previously, but instead to distill a new brandy from Syrah grapes - a varietal that shares some of the coffee's characteristics. It worked beautifully. Look for this in the near future.