Sitting alone at a bar with just a glass or two of whiskey can be a very intimate experience. Spending time with a whiskey and trying to figure out what makes that whiskey unique. Smelling it, feeling it, tasting it. Trying to learn about it – learn its personality and secrets. In a way, it’s like writing a letter to someone in the old-fashioned hand-written way when you sit down with a pen and paper and spend a half hour or hour with someone in your mind as you write to them.
It can be frustrating when you are trying to express what you feel – or taste – but can’t quite find the words. That moment when you are on the edge of a memory that you are trying unlock. That taste, that familiar but elusive taste, what is it? Why do I know it? The experience can be, oddly, emotional.
My challenge to myself is to taste – really, spend time with and taste – 33 whiskies in less than 30 days. They are whiskies I think I should know and have either never properly met or just don’t quite remember. And along the way I want to learn to nose, to taste, to articulate the flavors so they are no longer just “tastes like a bourbon,” “tastes sweet,” but instead they are living memories in my mouth and my mind. I like most whiskies, so it’s not really about discovering what I like or don’t like, but what I like about each one. And why.
Is it possible? We’ll find out.
Today’s new acquaintances:
Michter’s US-1 Bourbon and Old Grand-Dad 114.