High West Midwinter Nights Dram – Act 5

MWND Act 5 2.jpg

Thanks to /u/devoz for the sample.

With a yell from the High West Distillery there was a call:

Go, Philostrate,

Stir up the American whiskey fans to merriment;

And we can guess that Philostrate went and then came back moments later and just said

“Why not release another Midwinter Nights Dram instead?”

And they did, because that’s easier than sending a faerie round the world to tell everyone to get ready for merriment.

Thus, as someone who was waiting for a tiny woodland creature to come to my house, and potentially make an ass out of me, I was happy I instead was handed a sample of High West Midwinter Nights Dram – Act 5, the latest in the acts. Will they do more acts than the play? And like the play, will the last act not be needed at all? And kinda horrible? And cause arguments between myself and other nerds?

Probably the last one.

So, as a quick reminder, here is the mashbills of the ryes used are as follows:

  • 95% rye, 5% barley malt from MGP;
  • 53% rye, 37% corn, 10% barley malt from Barton Distillery.
  • 80% rye, 10% corn, 10% barley malt from Barton Distillery.

This is the fifth I’ve reviewed, and I preferred Act 4 so far. Let’s see how Act 5 does, shall we?

MWND Act 5 1.jpg

Price: N/A at the LCBO

Region: Utah

Abv: 49.3%

Colour: 5YR 3/8

Nose: Violets, plums, blueberry jam, cinnamon buns

Initial nice floral element with that pair well with plums, like sugar plum faeries dancing upon the streets of Detroit. Maybe, I don’t know, I’m trying to update the sayings.

Lighter nose than previous, though still has that spice and butter note that I enjoy.

Taste: Cinnamon buns with icing, dry honeydew, plum, brown sugar

More cinnamon buns, and not those bad ones that are at the mall which are probably the hunting grounds for red hats. Good fruit on the taste, some brown sugar to balance it all out with water, and more of the port influence here.

Finish: Cornbread, violets, taffy, cereal, cantaloupe

Finish is odd, not in the “a silkie came out and demanded I go on a quest, less I be turned into a newt”, more so the initial cornbread notes that come from the rye. Then it goes back to those floral notes that remind you of the colour purple.

Conclusion: Not as good as Act 1 or Act 4, however still a good act. Which is more than I can say for the original Shakespeare play.

This is more floral, less bombastic, and easier to sip on than others. That said, the flavours here balance each other out. There’s dry, floral, and sweet aspects. There’s brown sugar aspects that climb and fall in complexity, good jammy notes, and spice that you expect from French oak and port casks.

If you aren’t able to get Act 4, then grab this one. It’s almost as good.

83/100

Bourbon review #215, Utah review #19, Whiskey Network review #1355

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