Monday, November 05, 2007

Malt Mission 2007 #191

Highland Harvest Tasting Notes
Highland Harvest
Organic Blended Scotch Whisky

40% abv

£15

Here we are 45 weeks later and this Malt Mission is still going. In fact, I have no indication that it will dry up any time soon. Still blows my mind actually. Ten drams from the landmark #200 and I am still unsure what exactly will be on the menu, but I am sure it will all be fun and tasty. Thanks for joining me on the ride!

Although it can be generally said that whisky production in Scotland has always been a tradition of ecological efficiency (often dictated by economic efficiency), the process is not 'organic' by our modern classifications of the term. The process is wholly natural and chemical-free, the problem is with the raw materials. This whisky is distilled with barley certified organic by the Soil Association and was the first organic Scotch whisky on the market.

Launched in 2005, this whisky is the product of Chris Parker and the Organic Spirits Company from what I can gather, has been blended by Richard Paterson. I have also been told that it very likely contains Isle of Jura, Dalmore, and Benromach. Can anyone verify or add more info?

Like with organic coffee or organic tobacco, we should not be lead to believe that organic whisky will somehow remedy the negative effects of alcohol (or caffeine or nicotine), but rather, by buying a product that uses fugicide and pesticide-free barley we are protecting soil, water, and local ecosystems. And apparently there is less methanol in this whisky than in most others. Not the greatest selling point, but that is just one of the techniques Parker used in trying to get folks to try the stuff. So let's have some.

TASTING NOTES:

Hardware store, rope, wood. Root beer. Minty and fresh. Corn and carrot muffins.

Vanilla and cloves, brown sugar, and then the flavours change direction: dry, smoky, stewed carrot sweetness. Burnt toast, corn on a barbecue.

SUMMARY:

Much more interesting than I would have guessed or than I had been led to believe by others. Goes to show we shouldn't take anyone's opinion as gospel (even when compose their own bible and style their hair like a Galilean in the time of you-know-who). This whisky is well worth trying, and would probably be brilliant for use in cocktails and mixed drinks.

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1 comment:

Ian Chapman said...

Just a small point. You mention Benromach is a constitute part of Highland Harvest. This is not the case.

Our organic output is only sold as Benromach Organic Speyside Single Malt Scotch Whisky.

Keep up the great work!

Kind regards,

Ian Chapman
Gordon & MacPhail