Amrut Spectrum, 6 YO, 50 %
Today I present my review of the quite intriguing Amrut Spectrum from Amrut Distilleries. Here's a bit of info on this rather uniquely matured whisky:
To make this whisky, malts were initially matured for a period of 3 years in ex-Bourbon barrels after which they were transferred to a custom built barrel. This barrel was constructed at an undisclosed location in Europe with the help of a few experts. Whisky is traditionally aged in a barrel made of one type of wood, which lends the flavour and complexities to the malt, however, Amrut wanted to experiment with a barrel with five different types of wood. This however presented a challenge, as each wood stave had different thickness and properties.
The problem was addressed in Europe with an indigenous solution; five different barrels were made, each of a different type of wood, and corresponding staves removed to be stitched together in one barrel. The barrel therefore consisted of a mix of new American Oak, new French Oak, new Spanish Oak, ex-PX cask sherry cask stave & ex-Oloroso sherry cask stave. The five different woods, some old, some new, were expected to unleash a level of complexity on the malt unlike ever before in the centuries of whisky making.
The Amrut Spectrum was released in a limited run of 1000 bottles. As the text above says, it was matured initially for three years in ex-Bourbon barrels, then for a further 3,5 years in these 'multi-wood casks'.
A few bottles of Amrut Spectrum was made available to buy a few weeks ago and immediately sold out at NOK 1565 (86010431), and in Sweden at SEK 1349 (1126001).
Nose: Wow, complex stuff, to say the least! Let's see if we can identify some of the myriad of aromas here. First off we have clear sherry notes; the dark sweetness of PX is here, as well as various dried fruits - raisins and dates most notably. I also find vanilla, and hints of fresh oak. There's spices galore and herbs; white pepper, black pepper, cinnamon, cloves, and hints of mint. Then there are notes of coffee, worn leather, dark chocolate, and nuts.
Taste: Rich and oily mouthfeel. The oak influence seems stronger on the palate - at least at first. It is medium spicy - much the same spices I found on the nose. The dried fruits are not that prominent now. There's a ton of sweet, sweet honey here though. Honey and caramel.
Finish: Ah, on the long finish the dried fruits are back. The dark sweetness of the PX sherry re-appears, as well as the notes of coffee and dark chocolate. A touch of oaky bitterness towards the end, but it's all fun.
Comments: Wow, this is an incredibly complex and rich whisky. I guess I should stop being amazed at how well-balanced and mature whiskies come out of the Amrut distillery at such a young age, but I can't... It is simply amazing.
Image from The Whisky Exchange.
Sláinte! - Thomas