A country’s heritage is a hard thing for me to grasp.
On the one hand, I love the idea of different communities taking up ideas they have cultivated, thus avoiding a homogenous collective that could miss better or different ways of doing things.
On the other hand, I see the results of blind devotion to ones own country as a flawed aspect of life. It can blind us to do some pretty stupid fucking shit, and blind us to better ways in some effort to protect an identity that, at it’s heart, is merely nostalgia.
Whatever the case, at Zuidam distillers, they are making whisky (a non-traditional Dutch spirit) with windmills and millstones in the Dutch method. They are preserving their own culture while borrowing from others to make Millstone Lightly Peated.
This young malt uses windmills and millstones to keep the aromas to it (according to the website), and is only lightly peated to about 20ppm. Finally they age it in New American Oak, so it has traces of Bourbon making in the process as well.
I’ve never had anything from this country before (in terms of whisky), so let’s see how it tastes.
Price: N/A in Ontario
Age: 5 years
Nose: Peat, perfume, grapefruit, yeast, cereal, gummy bears
I can see what they mean by keeping the aromas in the whisky. This is very aromatic, which is a fun word to say in one’s head. Try it again. I can wait. I’m just text.
Not as peaty as I expected either. Also quite young in the nose too.
Taste: Juicy Fruit gum, smoke, Fuzzy Peaches, anise, arugula
Light, and hard to pick out much beyond sweets, some spice, and smoke. The peat does a lot of the job on the flavour profile keeping it interesting, though there’s only so much it can do.
Finish: Smoke, dry, oregano, cherry, grass
Again, the peat is doing all the heavy lifting and no one is helping. It’s young and it tastes young.
Conclusion: I’ll say this: The nose is the best part by a lot. This is quite young and shows it’s age. It needs more time in the cask, however I think this is a good start.
Zuidam has taken a lot of different methods and found some good starting points. I want to try the other offerings from them.
As an aside: I also tried their 5 year Genever, and enjoyed it quite a bit, so if you’re a gin/genever fan, check it out.
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