California – 53%ABV – $55 (solid pricing for single cask, cask strength whiskey!)
As I begin to write about this 3rd cask of Leviathan from Lost Spirits Distillery (Leviathan being a single malt whiskey from California peated with Canadian peat to 110ppm), I immediately began to wonder what to lead off with.
Sure, I could go right to the review but if I did, I’d be remiss in telling you that having looked at the awesome still at Lost Spirits, I was in some way reminded of Trogdor the Burninator.
Wait, come again? You’ve not heard of Trogdor the Burninator? I feel I must enlighten you:
(Yes. I am still sort of 9 years old…)
My bit of fun off to the side now, seriously, check out the Lost Spirits still. It’s a stunning work of art (that creates some fine juice).
Let’s review the whiskey!
Nose — Pushing initial thoughts of Mezcal out of my head and I find this to be a very grain-forward whiskey. All upfront we have horse feed, barley draff and peated mash all ready to be turned into wash/beer.
It’s also very barn-yardy (to be expected with younger, peated whiskies).
Let’s not forget the fruits, shall we? Milk chocolate covered strawberries. Perhaps a touch of marzipan and peach pit.
Quite easy to nose at 53% ABV! Smokey, for sure, but there’s a charred wood quality here, too.
Palate — Big and juicy and fruity! Tons of red berries, still getting some of those peach notes (the flesh right by the pit: tart yet over ripe).
Back to the barnyard-like notes. In fact, and this note was pointed out to my by a good friend, there’s a touch of horse-hind.
Put your nose up to a horse and, bam!
Warming, comforting, almost a bit too fruity (if that’s possible).
Finish — Fruity notes increase as does a building spice along the sides of the tongue.
In sum — Beyond the individual notes, taking the macro look and as previously reported, this is a very unique spirit! While I thought the first one I had was a touch more balanced, this one was insanely enjoyable. This to me is a summer dram. Yes, it’s smokey & peaty, but the fruits and grain have their hands on the wheel with this one. I’d love to have a dram of this while hanging out in a field of grains, reading a book.
Special thanks to BD for the official ample sample!