Agree with it or disagree with is totally up to you, one thing you definitely cannot deny is that the annual release of Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible and the winner of the title of ‘World Whisky Of The Year’ is definitely something that everyone is curious about and they sure have had an impact on the whisky trading patterns of the winning whiskies during the weeks and months that follow this announcement. Last year for example the Yamazaki Sherry Cask 2013 won this title and what followed was an unprecedented frenzy of people from across the world spending well over a 1000 quid on an average for a bottle that used to cost lesser than one tenth that price when it was released. Well I don’t know if we can expect the same kind of trends to follow for this year’s winner but the fact that this year too for the second time running, none of the world renowned Scotch whiskies have made it into Jim’s Top 5 list of whiskies and that a Canadian whisky is what took top honors is sure going give whisky lovers from across the world enough to talk about.
Here’s a quick summary of the Top 5 Whiskies as per Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible 2016:
1. World Whisky of the Year 2016 – Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye
This whisky as their website describes it combines the distinctive flavor of Canadian rye grain with the unmistakable smoothness of Crown Royal for a truly exceptional Canadian whisky. It is made with 90% rye. This is gently spicy with soft pepper, vanilla and butterscotch notes. It currently retails at approximately GBP 25+
2. Pikesville 110 Proof Straight Rye
Taken from their website: Produced in Kentucky from extra-aged barrels stored in prime warehouse locations, Heaven Hill keeps this historic Maryland mark alive with this award-winning six year old, 110 proof offering. Retailing currently at approximately GBP 65
3. Midleton Dair Ghaelach
Once again taken from their website: Midleton Dair Ghaelach is the latest addition to Single Pot Still Whiskeys of Midleton range from Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard. This uniquely Irish whiskey has been matured primarily in refill American Oak bourbon barrels and, for the first time ever, finished in virgin native Irish Oak Hogshead casks.
Midleton Dair Ghaelach is crafted in the classic Single Pot Still Irish Whiskey style; a mash of malted and unmalted barley has been triple distilled in traditional copper pot stills and matured for between 15 and 22 years in American refill casks. Uniquely, the whiskeys were then married together for two days and filled into Irish oak casks for almost a year, a process which was overseen by Midleton Master of Maturation, Kevin O’Gorman, and Master Blender, Billy Leighton.
Currently retailing at approximately GBP 200
4. William Larue Weller Bourbon – 2014
One of the highly sought-after 2014 Buffalo Trace Antique Collection releases, the William Larue Weller is a superb Kentucky straight bourbon whiskey, bottled at a sturdy 70.1% ABV. The William Larue Weller name comes from the clever chap that pioneered the method of using wheat in bourbon production in place of rye. This one usually flies off shelves. It used to be retailed at GBP 125+
5. Yamazaki Mizunara 2014
This single malt was composed exclusively with whiskies aged in Japanese Mizunara Oak. 1600 bottles of this whisky were released in the first half of 2014 exclusively in Japan. This one’s going to be tough to find. It used to retail at approximately GBP 140 when it was released but now I’m fairly certainly it’s probably going to cost a lot more.
Well that’s it .. a round up of all who won.. Whether they are worthy winners or not is for you to decide. I for one will definitely try most of these (IF I can get my hands on them .. at a reasonable price..:))!!