Hockey season is upon us and while I wrote this review hours before the Kraken would drop the puck on their 2023-2024 season it won’t go live until the first game is in the books. But being a hockey fan made this the perfect libation to review this week on The Barrel Burner.
According to Westland Distillery, “This year’s commemorative bottling continues Westland’s search for the Seattle Kraken by following our brave explorers into the deep as they desperately try to lay hold of the illusive beast. Each commemorative bottling contains our award-winning American Single Malt whiskey within the annual custom label. This release is exclusive to Washington State and comes in limited quantities only available during the 2023-2024 hockey season.”
Whiskey Review: Westland and the Search for the Seattle Kraken
ABV: 46% ABV (92 Proof)
Type: American Single Malt
Age: 40 Months Maturation (Minimum)
Grain Bill: Washington Select Pale Malt, Munich Malt, Extra Special Malt, Pale Chocolate Malt, Brown Malt, Bairds Heavily Peated Malt
Yeast Type: Belgian Brewer’s Yeast
Casks: : Cooper’s Reserve New American Oak, Cooper’s Reserve Used American Oak, First Fill Ex-Bourbon, First Fill Ex-Oloroso Hogsheads and Butts, Second Fill Ex-Oloroso Hogsheads and Butts
Distillery: Westland Distillery
Location: Seattle, Washington (USA)
The Nose: The light aromas don’t rise from the glass, instead we need to lean and take a pull before a subtle vanilla and marshmallow appears. Subsequent sniffs reveal subtle berries, and a slight peat.
The Taste: Some summer fruits appear on the front end with nuances of apricots, cantaloupe and honeydew melon. The finish however is smokey with more peat than I was expecting. I’ll be quite honest, I was taken back by it not expecting it. After being hit with that right jab subsequent sips reveal malted milk balls and marzipan.
Conclusion: If you blindfolded me on the first sip I would of thought this was a Scotch whisky and I would have guessed Glenfiddich or Oban. Once I was able to adapt to what I was initially taken aback from I eagerly gave myself a second pour, but this time I made it a double. As a genera rule of thumb I don’t like smoky or peated whisky but this one hits different.
Allegedly there is no difference between this commemorative bottle and their flagship whiskey so either one is definitely worth the purchase.