Pure Joy

When I found out yesterday that Westland had released two new expressions—a sherry-matured whiskey and a new peated whiskey—I was completely ecstatic. I'm head over heels in love with the Westland Single Malts from Seattle and I was very excited to get a chance at some single cask selections from their back stock recently. But, for some reason, despite my devotion to all things Westland, I wasn't aware these two new labels were hitting the market this week, so when my friends from Anchor walked through the door today with both bottles, I immediately did a happy dance. I smiled, wiggled, jumped up and down, and quickly popped both bottles to find out exactly what I was getting myself into. To no surprise, both whiskies were outstanding. The Sherry Wood is exactly what you hope it will be: the standard Westland flavor with more sweet, cakey richness and a hint of nutty goodness on the finish. It's young, but it's soft as all hell. The peated expression is actually a marriage of heavily-peated single malt with non-peated single malt; the result being a more mild-mannered version of the Islay style, more akin to something like Talisker or Springbank, than Lagavulin. It's round and supple, oily in the middle, but phenolic on the back end. I love it, and I don't care what anyone else thinks. I'm a total Westland mark, so I'm going to cheer for them no matter what.

There are moments in life where you're so excited that you completely lose track of social etiquette and you just surrender to pure joy. Like Westland's delicious single malt whiskies, professional wrestling is one of those things that just makes me lose all sense of decency, putting me into a frenzy of unbridled emotion. Take this magical moment in the year 2000 as an example. I was a 230 pound (I'm now about 175), chain-smoking, Jack-In-The-Box grubbing 20 year old, sitting in the front row at ECW's Heatwave event when I got the chance to reach out and hug one of my all time favorite wrestlers: Rob Van Dam. I didn't care about anything at that point in my life but instant gratification, so I just reached out on national pay-per-view television, grabbed RVD, and didn't let go until he said to me, "Dude, come on."

While I try to be a bit more mature in my old age, I really enjoy those brief moments in life where everything is right in the world and you can just let your guard down and be yourself. That's how I feel drinking Westland's whiskies. I'm not worried about age statements or anything regarding the specs or the details. I'm just drinking a spirit I really enjoy.

And, yes, if you go back and watch that event on the WWE network you can pause the television and see the above photo in all its pure, unadulterated glory. I was truly happy in that moment. 

-David Driscoll

David Driscoll