Kavalan Single Malt
Taiwanese Single Malt Whisky 46%
Yes that label is photoshopped… don’t think you can tell…
Strength: 46% ABV
Chill Filtered: Nope
Was my first experience of Taiwanese Whisky
After hearing great things (from certain YouTubers) about Kavalan Whisky, I am pleased to finally try my first taste of Taiwanese Whisky.
Compared to the well-established vintages of Scotch distilleries, Kavalan is a relative newbie on the block only opening in 2006. However, with the contrast in climate, they are able to turn bottles out at a quicker pace.
At first, I thought that this “Kavalan Single Malt” was the entry-level bottle of the Kavalan range however from researching it is more expensive than both the Concertmaster and Distillery Select bottlings. Let see how well this mid-range bottle does.
I have got to start with the branding. The gold emboss used for the main logo is fantastic at conveying the regal and high-class appearance that Kavalan seems to be striving for throughout all their marketing. It then feels a bit of a shame that on the vast majority of their bottles this rich gold has been replaced for a second-place metallic silver. I can only assume this was done to provide more of a contrast to the golden liquid inside.
As the above photo shows only a good looking sample bottle, glass and a brilliantly photoshopped logo, you can check out the bottle here on the Kavalan website.
Interestingly, or should I say worryingly, their website states “the perfect ratio is “Kavalan Classic 1: Water 5, and add ice to cool“. Let’s see if this is better neat or enjoyed like concentrated apple and blackcurrant squash.
Instantly, the first punch out of the glass is rich roasted plums bobbing up and down in dark Caribbean rum. The nose on this Kavalan is fantastic and really brings olfactory memories flooding back.
I really want to describe it as NOSEtalgic as is reminiscent of so many aromas: Spicy chili trail mix, Lemon & Thyme seasoning and spiked cherryade.
Sadly it is nowhere near as interesting on the palate. Thinly smooth and quite bland on the entrance, it is followed by some slightly sour and spicey pine trees notes. After a few sips it meanders into rye territory with some spearmint appearing only to quickly dissipate into a surprisingly short finish. Surely with 4/5 being water, you won’t be able to taste anything?
For me, it reminds me of a tad tamer, Mackmyra Jacklyca.
Being based in the UK, it is hard to compare the costs of a “World Whisky” compared to something closer to home. But don’t worry. I still will.
It tends to sit between £55 – £65 which feels a fair price when you take the whole story into account, but for the Whisky inside… I would wait for a special offer. It can be picked up online via Amazon.
Thank you Nick for sending me this sample. You are a superstar!
Verdict: NOSEtalgic, TASTEtragic
These reviews are done solely for entertainment and reference purposes. I am not a writer, just someone who wants to blab on about booze so please excuse the many spelling and grammatical mistakes.
While I try to ensure all information is accurate do let me know if you see any mistakes.