Saturday, 20 August 2011

English Summer Rain - Snow Grouse

Our rather wet summer holiday
in the British Isles
There is something quintessentially British about commenting on the weather. It permeates all conversation. You can be discussing the ins and outs of post-modern thought and still get round to that awfully horrid twenty minutes of rain last Tuesday. Furthermore it is profoundly British to complain about the weather during the summer. We could have weeks of sunshine but it will be the downpour at the end that we remember. Unfortunately, I remember the good weather all too well. In fact I have a very accurate memory of sitting at work listening to the air conditioning stuttering to a wheezing halt as the task of cooling a room reaching solar temperatures became all too much for it as it had the temperature control equivalent of a cardiac arrest. As I sat there mopping a torrent of sweat from my scalding brow, I craved everything from water to an ice bath, and had I been aware of it, I would probably have begged for a chilled whisky. Except I know better and know that outside of a cocktail that would never work. Famous Grouse, of course, disagree. They have produced what they have, very originally, christened the Snow Grouse. The concept is a grain whisky that you chill before you serve. Despite being all too aware of the novelty value that this whisky would of course have, I was very cautious. Nevertheless I had to try it and wasn't completely disappointed. It offered a very spirity drink that was refreshing but I thought could have offered more. I would like to have seen some extreme louche effect from non-chill filtration and some more complexity and, although I think that it offered a new approach to whisky, I just feel that if Compass Box had done it I would be much more impressed.

Snow Grouse
40% - No Age Statement - Bottled by Famous Grouse
Nose: Medicinal here with notes of wet paint. I also got the TCP I never get but everyone else does from Laphroaig. Finally this smelled more of vodka than whisky.
Palate: Very creamy with a solvent edge.
Finish: Creamy again with sultanas and bananas.
Overall: A novelty most definitely but fun for it. Interesting but I wouldn't buy a bottle. Goes well with scones surprisingly.

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