Monday, 15 December 2014

Amrut Fusion - 50% Batch no.24, bottled June 2013

I tried a dram of this Indian whisky at the Newcastle Whisky festival back in March and loved it. On slightly wobbly legs, I approached the festival shop at the end of the day and bought a bottle. I even remembered to leave the pub with it later that night - a fact I'm rather proud of considering the state I was in.
    Word of advice: don't go to the pub after a whisky festival. It might seem like a good idea at the time, but it's not. Trust me.
    Now, I took my time with this one as it's a beefy dram, packed full of flavour and certainly not an every day sipper - at least, not for my palate.
    The 'fusion' in the name comes from the fact that the malted barley used to create the whisky is from both India and Scotland. Nice!
    On the nose, huge, heavy fruity notes dominate, with juicy peaches and nectarine aromas making the mouth water right off the bat. Let it settle - add a few drops of water - and the Amrut Fusion starts to evolve and show its true character. Underneath those rich golden fruit notes, there's also chewy chocolate fudge, peppermint, fruity flapjacks, dry roasted peanuts, golden syrup, dried banana chips, hard-boiled travel sweets and barley sugars. This is a pungent malt you could sit and sniff happily for hours.
    Swirl it around your tongue and those big, beefy flavours match the nose perfectly. There's a huge oak influence here but it’s peppered with cinnamon, stewed fruit, thick jam, black tea, treacle, dates and strawberry bonbons. It also has some herbal notes dancing around, with hints of cardamom and coriander clearly having a good time. It also has a good viscosity to it and it coats the mouth beautifully.
    The finish is robust - imagine licking a plank of dried oak a few times and you'll get the same drying effect here (without the splinters). There's also prickly spices, deep caramel, rich coffee cake and it also carries a slight bitter note.
    As I said previously, this isn't an every day dram - the  dry oaky note tends to dull the senses after a few glasses but it’s a whisky that would go splendidly with Christmas pudding. After dinner, don't go for a glass of port, pour this instead. For a non-age statement whisky, this is a belter. The spirit matures faster in the cask in the stifling Indian climate so don't worry about it being young - just dive in!

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