The Development of the Individual Taste and the Significance of Guided Whisky Tastings
The life of a taste experiences that they want to conserve in exquisite bottles for the future. Others may look for these taste experiences, too, but they don't want to treat themselves to these whiskies but make a profit in the far future by selling them to connoisseurs.or is a constant search for new bottles that promise a special experience. Some people look for
Many collectors buy bottles hoping for an increase in value. (link) But there are extraordinary taste qualities in original and independent bottlings of Scotch single malt whiskies that prompt other collectors to act. They judge bottles by their taste rather than by a possible increase in value. Does an 18-year-old Highland Park from 1997 not have a much higher value than one from 2014? After all, in 1997 there were still more 18-year-old Highland Park available for choosing and better than later when demand rose strongly and the whisky was even temporarily sold out. The same can be said about the highly popular from Ardbeg, Bowmore, Lagavulin and Macallan.
Let's call these people the connoisseurs-collectors, in contrast to the value-collectors that aim for a maximum increase in value.
Both types of taste? Can you rely on third party statements about the quality of a whisky?have fundamentally different motivations to buy a bottle. While an increase in value can be expressed in euros or dollars, subjective is hard to quantify. The following questions illustrate the problem: What tastes good? What tastes bad? Is there a generally accepted
The author of this article has also put aside a few bottles of the finest Scotch single malt whisky, which will be opened on very special occasions in the coming years.
But will we appreciate the taste of these bottles as much as today when we open them in the future?
1. Taste Memory
Our taste changes with each new taste experience. Once our nose and thus our brain have 'experienced' a new aroma, we, or our brain, have changed a little. With these constant small changes we become a totally different person in terms of within a few years.
By far the best whisky I've ever tried was a 15-year-old Strathisla in 1995. Some years later I had the chance to taste it again. However, the tasted completely different to how I remembered it. It was still a good whisky, but I had broadened my single malt whisky horizon, and a multitude of high-quality bottlings had taken the place of the Strathisla 15 y.o.: Royal Lochnagar Selected Reserve, Mortlach Flora and Fauna 16 y.o., Macallan 18 y.o. 1978 etc. The only thing about the Strathisla 15 y.o. that had stuck in my memory was the mental 'best malt '.
How easily we are deceived! But that's life. We constantly develop as a person and we're surprised when old certainties no longer hold true and unexpected changes occur.
2. Whisky Tastings
An even bigger problem can arise for connoisseurs-collectors when theytry a malt and decide to put a bottle aside for later. At first glance this is a safe bet. "I've tasted the whisky and it's awesome! - I can't do anything wrong." However, this is only true at first glance, because our perception is influenced by our mood.
For example, there are days when I only like certain whiskies. And then there are days when I also like malts that are less good. If you buy a whisky while you're in the second state of mind, there's a high probability that you'll have problems in the future although you've tasted it in advance.
Guided whisky tastings are highlights for connoisseurs-collectors. During an opulent , 6, 8 or even 12 or more samples might be available to taste. Here lies the danger of misjudging.
3. An Old Trick
An old winemaker told me of a trick how to fine wines for a wine tasting without adulterating them. The whole trick is to influence the sense of taste between the individual rounds of the tasting. For a good wine tasting he generously offers cheese and white bread. After the second glass at the latest, the guests feel the alcohol in their blood and decide to eat a slice of white bread with cheese.
What happens in the mouth? To promote digestion, the taste, humans need a bit of fat and/or salt. Both enhancers come from the early stages of our evolution. Each type of food tastes better when a bit of fat and some salt is added. The fat and the salt from the cheese soon start to gear our taste to 'sweetish-pleasant' for the coming glass.enriches the saliva with enzymes that split the of the flour into . We quickly swallow the bread, but the remaining breadcrumbs in the mouth are digested by the enzymes in the way mentioned above. In order to enhance the slightly sweet
But that's not all: After the second or third glass the alcohol starts to numb the nerve ends on the tongue and in the mouth/throat. Alcohol is a neurotoxin at high doses. At medium doses it numbs our nerves, which affects not only our ability to respond in traffic. As the dose increases, also our sense of taste starts to deteriorate. Already after the third sample our sense of taste is massively impaired.
Should we therefore refrain from trying a whisky before buying it? As nonsensical as this question might sound at first glance, there's a little truth to it. You should be aware of the circumstances under which you tasted a . Was it the extraordinary 196x Glen XYZ, which was offered as sample nr. 8 during a tasting? Immediately after the intense whisky? Or did you try the whisky in pleasant company after a dinner in a Scottish restaurant, sitting in front of a fire while wonderful music was playing?
Allevents aim for one thing: that you keep it in highly pleasant memory afterwards. That's what you paid for. You spent your money for a terrific, holistic experience that engages all your senses. The better it was, the more likely you are going to come back and maybe bring your friends - that's the motivation for you and for the host.
This great ambience can be bad for us afterwards, when we overrate a single malt whisky due to this kind of deliberate positive misperception. Typically the bottles sampled in the tasting are offered for sale afterwards. At home you then sit calmly in familiar surroundings and don't recognise the newly-bought whisky anymore.
There are several possible solutions. Use your experience and knowledge about the taste the malt at different points in time before you buy a whole bottle. The following article explains how you can rate a new bottle and how to find out if it will match your . (link)and the or get comprehensive information from the internet. It also helps to