It took a Scotland win over Slovenia to provoke Young Eck into jotting down his thoughts on Whisky Live at Glasgow. But like an ageing whisky, it was worth the wait!
The sequel is rarely as enjoyable as the first instalment and this certainly holds true for Whisky Live 2: Back in George Square. While the audience increased three-fold, many of the stars from the first show were absent.
Still, inside the marquee, once one blocked the constant din from the gross Isle of Jura stall, there were some fine whiskies to suit everyone's taste. With five tokens in hand and constantly fumbling while watching to see if my temporary host would demand payment I visited a trusted old friend ... Balvenie. This is how the day unfolded.
1. Balvenie 21-year-old, cask strength, 51.2%.
This refined yet exaggerated that classic Balvenie taste that makes it my favourite whisky. Smooth yet spicy, gentle and lasting. A real late night whisky, classic Speyside.
2. Glenfiddich 30-year-old cask strength, 53%. A rounded near-perfect whisky.
Worth noting both were poured from casks in the marquee.
3. Dewar's 18-year-old blend. 43%.
For those who turn their nose up at blends, try Dewars. Not the White Label but the 12-year-old blend which I have at home. I was curious about the 18 and was not disappointed,. Easy drinking, a great whisky for reflective moments.
4. Springbank 15-year-old. 46%.
Springbank is a wonderful whisky and the 15 a fine progression from another favourite the 10 year-old.
5. The Speyside, 12-year-old. 40%.
A curious whisky - not as smooth as one would expect but with more bite than Dewars for example and therefore for wintry evenings. The company offered a range of its own bottlings and I went onto try its Littlemill 1984 - which is an acquired taste which I have yet to acquire.
That finished it well... until I heard of a 30-year-old Highland Park being opened. It was a bit gimmicky as it was announced over the tannoy but then that was part of the problem. I tried it and it was disappointing, a bit like Whisky Live 2.
But then again, who needs Whisky Live when you have Glasgow's Whisky
Jim, Ken and Julia from the club were present.
Now we just need Ken S to report on his Highland Park tasting on the Friday, his marathon session on the Saturday and the progress he's making in finding and buying a disused distillery .... this being not unconnected with the marathon session!