In: Minutes17 Nov 2010
Minutes of the Meeting
November 13, 2010
Members Present: Single Malts Present:
Bruce Card Ben Nevis 10
Mike Day The Macphunn (18 yr old)
Mike Peet Springbank 10
Jim Dice Bowmore Islay 12
Tim Robinson The Glenlivet Archive 21
Erin Meinders Ardmore Traditional Peated
Jim Sabella Bruichladdich Links (14 yr old)
Kevin Halpin (G)
1. This meeting of the Old Scotch Nosing or Tasting Society was graciously hosted by Mark Richardson at his north O’Fallon home. Mark provided us with the fixings to go along with our steaks; hors d’oeuvres, salad, and spuds the size of Idaho. Thanks Mark!
2. It’s said that lightning doesn’t strike twice in the same place. Well it did this night as there was not just one, but two Halpin sightings! Not only did Don Halpin actually make it to a meeting, but he also brought his much younger looking brother Kevin as a guest. Hope you enjoyed the Scotch Kevin.
3. This meeting was the much anticipated final for the year featuring previous months’ winning Scotches; or at least the ones that got the most votes. With great anticipation our group of connoisseurs gathered in Mark’s living room ready to be impressed with the selections before them. And, to keep the playing field level, as in the past, this was a blind tasting.
4. With seven Scotches to sample, keeping them all straight before voting is a challenge. To help with this task our fearless leader (at the behest of the Scribe) provided everyone with a pen and paper to record tasting notes; a little something he learned from our Plaza Liquor sponsored Scotch tasting event. Included on the note page was a ballot for casting a vote for the best Scotch. This measure helped eliminate the peer pressure factor for those so inclined to peer pressure and produced some interesting results.
5. Armed with ballot and pen, we let the tasting begin.
a. BruichLaddich Links (14 yr old)
“Hickory flavor”-Jim D.; “Tasty”-Wojo; “Smokey”-Jake; “Peppery”-Wojo; “Good balance”-Jake; “I don’t thing there’s any of these tonight that I couldn’t do all night”-Wojo; “Hormones?”-Steve; “Honey, clover, and sherry”-Mo; “I vote for number one”-Erin
b. Ardmore Peated
“There’s the peat”-Wojo; “Hint of iodine”-Jim D.; “Smells like a gas mask”-Steve; “I smell the asphalt”-Mike P.; “Taste like Springbank”-Jim D.; “Definitely a different nose”-Bruce; “A sweetness to it”-Mike R.
c. Springbank 10
“Peated nose”-Jim D.; “Chlorine; like a swimming pool”-Steve; “Doesn’t taste as bad as it smells”-Jim D.; “Softer whiskey”-Mo; “No need to add water, it’s already weak”-Wojo; “Very briny”-Stan; “Where’s the Scotch?”-Mike D.; “No burn at all”-Bruce; “Alcohol and Gatorade”-Wojo; “Catholics would have better attendance if they served Scotch”-Don
d. The Glenlivet Archive 21
“Frosty, sweet nose”-Steve; “Sherry cask smell”-Jim D.; “Where’s the pancakes”-Wojo; “Perfumey”-Mo; “My lip is numb”-Don; “I can’t get past the sweetness”-Stan; “We voted for this? This won something?”-Mo; “Taste like Kool Aide”-Mike D.; “The Boones Farm of whiskey”-Steve; “You probably use this on your ice cream”-Tim;
e. Bowmore Islay 12
“Whoo”-Wojo; “Water with a bad aftertaste”-Jim D.; “This is the bathroom, third floor, bldg 1600”-Mike D.; “Like licking a dirty car battery terminal”-Don; “A lot of peat, I don’t taste much else”-Bruce; “Taste like hospital food”-Mike D.
f. The MacPhunn (18 yr old)
“Carmel nose”-Mo; “Green apple, tangy, peppery; no weak flavor here”-Wojo; “It explodes in the mouth”-Steve; “Adding water makes it nice”-Tim; “Apricot flavor”-Mike D.; “Water really helps”-Bruce
g. Ben Nevis 10
“Peat nose”-Jim D.; “Weak—second sip is better”-Wojo; “My taste buds are shot”-Mike D.; “I can’t feel my tongue”-Bruce; “A weak Islay?”-Jim D.
6. Following the tasting of the seventh Scotch (a number that some had difficulty counting to) we proceeded with the secret ballot. This was a fairly simple process for most of us, though some demonstrated a need for explanation (and perhaps assisted living). Mo Verling, in an attempt to fit in with this visit to St. Clair County, offered to sell his vote to the highest bidder. No serious offers were entertained as those of us from St. Clair County know we can obtain all the free votes we want at the local cemetery. Without a simple vote by show of hands, all were free to vote in secret for their truly favorite Scotch without fear of ridicule from the peanut gallery. This resulted in a wide spread of votes where every Scotch received at least one vote. Once the properly postmarked absentee ballots were counted, the winner with 6 votes was The MacPhunn with the BruichLaddich Links coming in second with 4 votes. What probably made The MacPhunn stand out was the fact it was the only cask strength whiskey sampled that night and by the time we’d gotten around to whiskey #6 a cask strength was what we needed to awaken our desensitized taste buds. One must wonder if the vote would have been different if The MacPhunn was placed earlier in the sampling or had we added a bit of water to it first. We’ll never know. If you’re interested in learning more about this “dark horse” whiskey, check out the Old SNOTS web site at www.theoldsnots.com.
7. As is our tradition, Old SNOTS will take the month of December off to concentrate on finding that perfect stocking stuffer for Christmas Eve. The Scribe will work on his Christmas wish list of Scotches for Santa and will leave Santa a nice plate of cookies and a dram of Speyside by the fireplace. January will be our annual pilgrimage to Scottish Arms on Burns night (25 Jan) for their sampling and a reading of “Ode to a Haggis.” Steve McAllister will once again don his skirt…I mean kilt…and provide comments on the nippy character of a January Illinois breeze. Our next large group meeting will be in February at the South Chicago home of Don Halpin. Sure hope Don will be there.
“Cab for Bean?!”
A group of men and women from all walks of life and all parts of the globe who, when the situation permits, warrants or demands, succumb to the reverence of Scotland’s most distinctive product—uisghe beatha, water of life, single malt whisky—and firmly of the conviction that “Whisky may not cure the common cold, but it fails more agreeably than most other things.”