Author: Wes

Senior Staff Writer, Wes, was born and raised in Darlington, South Carolina and attended college at the United States Air Force Academy. After flying helicopters for the Air Force and teaching at the Air Force Academy, he retired in beautiful Colorado Springs, Colorado, after twenty years of military service. He now works in public school education, is married with three children, and leads the monthly Proper Pour Whisk(e)y Club. You can follow him on Twitter @WesModernThirst and e-mail him at [email protected]

INTRODUCTION Today we have the third Duel installment on ModernThirst. In this effort, we will pit two (or sometimes even more) whiskies against each other in what we are labeling The Duel. As part of this new feature I’m going to bring in the thoughts, reviewing notes, and scoring inputs of some members of our Proper Pour Whisk(e)y Club (PPWC) to give multiple views on the whiskies challenging each other. Our club has been meeting for nearly six years now and have rated over 350 different whiskies on a 100-point scale very similar to that used on the ModernThirst site.…

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INTRODUCTION – OCTOMORE 8.1 Today we are going back in time a little to an older release from Bruichladdich that came out a little over two years ago. Recently, the Bruichladdich Octomore 10.3 was our Proper Pour Whisk(e)y Club’s Top Whisky of 2019 – scoring an amazing 94.5 overall (read about it here). In this review we will visit with the Bruichladdich Octomore 8.1 – which is still available, but getting harder to find. OCTOMORE 8.1 DESCRIPTION The Bruichladdich website describes this whisky as follows: The spirit of Octomore has been defying logic for over fifteen years.  The ‘what if’…

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INTRODUCTION Last October I started writing a new feature on ModernThirst where we began pitting two whiskies against each other head-to-head.  So far we have directly compared the Stranahan’s Single Barrel Cask Strength vs. Barrell Whiskey American Vatted Malt (click on the title to read the review) and last month we rated, Ardbeg Supernova (2019) vs. Bruichladdich Octomore 10.3.  As we go through 2020, I also plan to do some solo tasting Mini-Duels. These Duels are labeled “mini” because I will only have an ounce sample of each dram to compare. I will be doing this blind – without any…

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INTRODUCTION Today we have the second installment in a new feature on ModernThirst, one that hopefully will occur at least monthly in 2020.  We plan to pit two (or sometimes even more) whiskies against each other in what we are labeling The Duel. Sometimes the pairing will consist of a blind tasting of two whiskies from the nearly 150 blind samples I have set aside. As part of this new effort I’m going to bring in the thoughts, reviewing notes, and scoring inputs of some members of our Proper Pour Whisk(e)y Club (PPWC) to give multiple views on the whiskies…

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INTRODUCTION The following intro is a repeat from the past couple write-ups on Top Whiskies Tasted in 2019 – Honorable Mentions and #15 to #11 and Top Whiskies Tasted in 2019 – #10 to #6 (click the two titles to go back to those reviews).  Well, 2020 is here and we have not yet provided our list of best whiskies tasted in 2019.  As you know there are all kinds of whiskey year-end lists out there – “best of” – “best value” – “best NAS” – “best craft” – “best bourbon” – “best scotch” – etc..  Well, Jeremy and I decided…

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INTRODUCTION The following intro is a repeat from the Top Whiskies Tasted in 2019 – Honorable Mentions and #15 to #11 by the PPWC & Two Guys that Really Like Whiskies (click the title to go back to that review).  Well, 2020 is here and we have not yet provided our list of best whiskies tasted in 2019.  As you know there are all kinds of whiskey year-end lists out there – “best of” – “best value” – “best NAS” – “best craft” – “best bourbon” – “best scotch” – etc..  Well, Jeremy and I decided to do our third…

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INTRODUCTION Well, 2020 is here and we have not yet provided our list of best whiskies tasted in 2019.  As you know there are all kinds of whiskey year-end lists out there – “best of” – “best value” – “best NAS” – “best craft” – “best bourbon” – “best scotch” – etc..  Well, Jeremy and I decided to do our third such listing (see results from 2017 and 2018 by clicking on the year) a bit differently this time.  It is going to be a combination of the Proper Pour Whisk(e)y Club rankings for 2019 and some of our personal…

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Drinks by the Dram Irish Whisky Advent Calendar Top 10 Well, here we are once again – the end of the annual ModernThirst advent calendar review.  Many people, including myself, have been tweeting, Instagramming, and posting via other means, about their various advent calendar experiences this year.  In 2017, I worked through a Drinks by the Dram Premium Whisky Advent Calendar and then last year in 2018 it was a Japanese Whisky Advent Calendar – again by Drinks by the Dram (click on the calendar titles to check out those collective reviews).  So, to wrap up the 24 whiskies from…

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Day Twenty-Four: Irish Whiskey Advent Calendar Countdown DEC 24 – Teeling Whiskey 24 Year Vintage Reserve  46%   Cost = $350+   Score:  A- Nose:  the nose is stunning – best part; peaches, apricot, cream, white grapes, grilled pineapple Taste:  old leather with a floral quality, apricot, spiced peaches, drying element from the wine with a slight touch of smoke Finish:  lingering peach with spices – nice long finish Overall:  this single malt is finished in ex-Sauternes wine barrels; has won lots of awards – including World Whiskies Award Best Single Malt 2019 – and I can see why; really, really nice…

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Day Twenty-Three: Irish Whiskey Advent Calendar Countdown DEC 23 – Glendalough 7 Year Porter Barrel Finish   46%   Cost = $50-60   Score:  C Nose:  a different approach here – get hops, musty caramel with spice, wood, oats, grassiness Taste:  from the beginning a grassy note, beer influence prominent, spice, dark malt chocolate Finish:  medium to long, touch bitter with an herbal quality, some astringency and toasted oak Overall:  finished for 12 months in Black Pitts Porter barrels; I’ll admit I’m more of a wine finish guy on my whiskies – this may appeal to some, especially if you like…

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