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The Last Drops

by Oliver Klimek on April 4, 2011

Many whisky geeks have a Living Bottle that they use for blending experiments or just to dispose of leftovers from not-so-good whiskies.

My main source of whisky for tasting notes are samples – either bought or swapped – that come in little bottles from 3 cl to 10 cl. In the course of the months, quite a lot of those bottles accumulate, none of them being totally empty. So I decided to adapt the concept by filling the sample remnants into a Living Sample Bottle.

I used a 3 cl Master of Malt bottle selected for its cuteness and manageable size alike. It had previously contained Compass Box Orangerie. Back in October 2010 I started to fill it, first by emptying the bottles I already had and then continuing with the new arrivals as well as the last drops from the proper whisky bottles that I had emptied.

And now, after about 5 months, the 3 cl bottle is finally full and ready to be tasted. I made the mistake not to count the number of drams I used for this blend, but it must be somewhere in the region of 100 to 150 different whiskies. It is fair to assume that pretty much everything I tasted at home since Summer 2010 is included.

Please note that this is not whisky in the legal sense because I used the Orangerie sample bottle, and a few drops of newmake and the Evan Williams Honey Reserve are in it as well.

A small amount of dark sediment is noticeable at the bottom of the bottle, probably dust caught during the frequent times of being opened or perhaps also collected by the drops running though the sample bottles while being poured. I avoided the sediment in pouring the dram.

My Tasting Notes:

ABV: Not determined. From the mouthfeel I would guess it’s between 40% and 43%
Colour: Bright amber, slightly cloudy
Nose: Wood smoke, orange zest, raisins, hints of polished wood and mild spices.
Palate: Mild peat, tinned fruit cocktail, vanilla, hints of tea, nutmeg and pepper.
Finish: Long, dry and slightly and fruity.
Overall: The nose of this dram is terrific, but undiluted the palate is a bit too much “bits and pieces”. A few drops of  water help to make it rounder, but it’s still a little incoherent.

Rating: 79/100 – No price information as this dram is unrepeatable.

This experiment certainly was worth the waiting. I would never have expected a true cracker of a dram anyway. I was pleasantly suprised by the nose, though. The low ABV even though many cask strength drams were used and the cloudiness are caused by the fact that the last drops in the sample bottles had suffered from partial evaporation before they were poured into the “vat”.

The next bottle is already waiting.

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