Friday, 3 January 2014

Black Bottle (new style)

Black Bottle Blend (new style)
Burns Stewart Distillers
No Age Statement
Strength: 40%.

Nose: Richer and more sherried than the old style. This seems more like a peated speysider than an Islay, which by all accounts is the direction they are going with it. The simple savoury notes of the new style are deeper and almost more caramelised with BBQ pulled pork, or honey glazed ham, and there is also a note that is like roast beef and mustard - but in particular the brannigan's crisps. The richness is coming through as spiced ginger cake - the sherry influence here for me. There is also a touch of deep heat muscle rub, and of those firy cinnamon jawbreaker gobstobbers they sold when I was a child. Raisins and dates, christmas trifle and dessert fruits. Butterkist popcorn.

Palate: Sweet and sherried with chocolate, nuts and some spice.

Finish: Sweet but the savoury meaty smokiness again. BBQ pork again. Longer finish and thicker lasting in the throat than the old style.

Comments: I like this but this is a different dram from the old style recipe. I don't think the two are comparable in such a way other than the name. It is really a shame they are losing the old style, but maybe with this new style are they looking to break out into the foreign market now? I think they could have taken the opportunity to bump up the ABV a little, preferably to 46%, but at least to 43% - it is going to be a long time until they get a chance again now.

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