Compare and Contrast 1998
Posted: Thu Aug 14, 2008 6:07 pm
Read the full article on the frontpage.This summer Bruichladdich released two new single malts of the same vintage to compare and contrast. Both whiskies are from the 1998 vintage and matured in Sherry wood, one in Manzanilla casks, the other by way of contrast, in Oloroso casks. In July 1998 both types of Sherry casks were filled with identically distilled whisky and put to age in the same warehouse. Since 1981 Sherry is exclusively bottled in Spain, making sherry 'transport' casks for the whisky trade almost extinct.
Oloroso is a dark sweet, fortified wine, the backbone of 'cream' sherry. Manzanilla is a pale, dry, sophisticated wine aged by the Atlantic. Manzanilla is produced at Sanlucar, near Cadiz on Spain's Atlantic coast, 1400 miles to the south of Islay. "Manzanilla is world famous for it's marine influenced style; we have exactly the same effect here on Islay - 1400 miles further north."
Both of the casks having absorbed characteristics from the respective wines, influenced the maturing whisky, resulting in two different versions from identical original spirit. “Usually Sherry casks implies a nutty sweetness leached out of the wood into the whisky. Delightful when well balanced, but often clumsily over-stated. This is the real deal.”
Only 6000 bottles of each whisky are available at the suggested retail price of around £38. The stocks are estimated to last until Christmas 2008.