On Friday the 30th of September I was lucky enough to be involved in a tweet tasting with a little twist. This time I would be sampling two Islay single malts bottled under the Port Askaig brand, the twist being that supplied with the samples were two chocolates from Paul Anderson Young to pair with the malts.
Now I’ve been only doing the tweet tasting events for a little while now, with some very nice presentations for the samples received. The Port Askaig one was probably the best presentation I’ve received so far. I received a nice wooden treasure chest with the Port Askaig logo engraved in the lid, inside was both samples and chocolates layed on a bed of straw with a presentation card giving a description of the contents.
The samples were both pre-release with the first being a 8yo paired with a Sea Salted Caramel Truffle and the second was a 15yo Sherry cask paired with a Tobacco Caramel Truffle.
So on with the tasting with the Port Askaig 8yo ..
Nose: The first note to hit me was the typical Islay sweet peat and sea salt, then came a sweet honey hint, madeira sponge cake, almost creamy with a fruity poached pears hint..
Palate: Smoke is the first thing to hit your taste buds, then comes the pepper, some lemon and lime fruity notes, a nice warm spice appears with a salted caramel undertone..
Finish: The finish is sweet to start with a dry peatiness coming through..
A quite pleasant dram to sample, we now tried it with the chocolate first taking a sip of the malt before eating a piece of the chocolate. Then taking another sip of the malt to compare how the chocolate had affected the taste. For me it highlighted the salted caramel notes and gave the sample a dark chocolate hint.
We now moved on to the 15yo Sherry cask..
Nose: Such a subtle smoke note here, fruity with rasins, figs, a rich heathery honey note, some orange peel coming through after some time to breath..
Palate: The smoke and peat are more pronounced on the palate, dark chocolate, rich honey, with lots of fruit notes, oranges, figs, dates and a hint of ginger dance across the taste buds..
Finish: Long with a mellow smoke and soft spice hanging around for long time..
Again we repeated the process with the chocolate, this time using the Tobacco Caramel Truffle. This bought out even more of the smoke notes, making a excellent dram into something sublime. This might not be to everyone’s tastes but for me it was the star of the night, making me wonder how many other Whiskies I’ve tried would be changed or enhanced by with something like the two chocolates.
So thank you to Port Askaig and the Steve at The Whisky Wire for hosting a great night with a wonderful addition to it in the chocolates. I would also like to say thank you to Paul A. Young for the superb chocolates provided and the rest of the tweet tasters, without whom the night would not have been as good.