2020 Special Releases - trying eight exceptional whiskies

cocktail Oct 21, 2020

A Whisky Sour, a Sazerac, a Rob Roy or maybe even a Penicillin - those are a few of the drinks that whisky usually gets mixed into in our home bar. Whisky can be fantastic as a cocktail ingredient. Often very characteristic, it tends to impact the drink a lot contributing with distinctive flavor and also aromas. There are many great whiskies suited for cocktails; Bulleit and Johnnie Walker to name just a few.

But then last week we got to experience whisky in a more neat form, when we had the opportunity to sample eight special releases for 2020, under the umbrella ”Rare by Nature”. To us this was a fantastic possibility to try some of the best whisky in the world, and also to be able to compare them side by side. The whiskies we tried included:

Singleton 17 YO
Talisker 8 YO
Mortlach 21 YO
Lagavulin 12 YO
Cardhu 11 YO
Craggamore 20 YO
Dalwhinnie 30 YO
Pittyvaic 30 YO

Without going too much into detail on each one of those, we could easily say that they were all pretty amazing. Brand ambassador Mikael Lundén took us through the whole tasting, and it’s fascinating to learn the key information about each whisky, and then get to try it.

Our favorite amongst the eight, was probably Singleton 17 YO. It’s an unusual first-ever exclusively refill cask release of the Singleton Dufftown. A grassy whisky with honey and fruit notes and a gorgeous golden color -completed by a beautiful label inspired by both flora and fauna. Some 258 bottles will reach us Swedes on November 17th and we are so prepared.

After the tasting, that took place at Lydmar Hotel in Stockholm, we were served whisky cocktails to be paired with the dinner we had. The cocktails were prepared by Charlotte Halzius and included a Sunny Highball and a Boulevardier to name a few.

We love the concept of pairing food and cocktails. A nice glass of wine with your food is of course never wrong, but letting cocktails accompany your food can be a lot of fun! If you go for long drinks and highballs you actually have a quenching beverage to go with your food, which is likely to excite both yourself and potential dinner guests.

Having said that . . . we are probably ready to every now and then restrain ourselves from mixing - and just sip on high quality whisky in its neatest form. That’s what this whole experience taught us.

All eight bottles mentioned above are released in Sweden between November 2020 and February 2021. In general they come in limited quantities.

Lastly, some of the food and the bonus cocktail we were treated with.