in the world would we be without the oak barrel?
Well, for one thing, we wouldn't be enjoying any of those
brown colored spirits like Bourbon, Scotch or Rum. We also
wouldn't be enjoying fine wine of any color: red or white.
Aging wine and distilled spirits in new and/or used oak barrels
gives them their distinctive color and flavor. Without the
barrel, all spirits would be a boring, clear, transparent
waterish color like vodka.
has taken this whole process and upped the ante with their
new White Label Scratched Cask Scotch. First, they take up
to 40 selected single malt and single grain whiskys and blend
them to the same standard that was first created in the late
1800's. Then they age this blend in oak barrels, both used
Bourbon and virgin oak barrels for 4 years. As if that wasn't
enough, they then take used Bourbon barrels that are charred
and lightly scratch them to expose more wood and char and
then age the blend for several more months to finish it off
sounds like a whole lot of work, but the proof is in the tasting,
so let's get to it. Compared to the traditional Dewar's White
Label, the Scratched Cask Scotch is a much more golden brown
color, although the traditional blend is a pretty pale honey
color. The traditional blend has a soft honey like nose that
compliments its color. That nose continues with a touch of
vanilla and a light fruity bouquet. On the palate, the traditional
blend continues its light touch with a bit of peat smoke,
light malt, vanilla and honey. The finish is smooth and light
and short. This is a light handed Scotch that's pretty straightforward
and easy on the palate and equally easy to swallow. No wonder
it's one of the most popular Scotch's around.
let's get to that Scratched Oak blend. The nose is a bit more
oaky and smoky but still retains hints of the honey and vanilla.
On the palate, the smoky peat and oak really take a major
step forward and are much more readily discernible. This is
a bolder scotch than its kissing cousin the traditional white
label. The palate continues with the vanilla and honey and
is followed by subtle bourbon notes. The finish is again perfectly
smooth and leaves a peaty and smoky and oaky and bourbon like
taste that lingers a bit longer than the traditional white
label. I would have to say that this Scratched Cask blend
is worth the extra few bucks as it really delivers the flavor
and is more complex and oily and layered than the traditional
blend. If you like the flavors of Scotch, but don't like it
over oaky or heavily smoked , but enjoy a full flavored Scotch,
then this your glass of Scotch.
can get Dewar's White Label for around $19.99 per 750 ML bottle,
while Dewar's White Label Scratched Cask can be found for
around $24.99 per 750 ML bottle.
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