A while ago, I made a couple of purchases from Master of Malt. Among the bottles, was a 10 yr. old bottle of Three Ships. I opted to buy this bottle for the following reasons.
- It was a Single Malt Whisky and as you already know, me likey whisky!
- I had never heard of the brand, but was intrigued that it comes from South Africa.
- I was lured in by the packaging. I am such a patsy for a pretty package.
Three Ships is from the Distell Group and is produced under the watchful eye of former cricketer turned master distiller, Andrew Watts of the James Sedgwick Distillery. (A history of the distillery can be found out at the Whisky Tasting Fellowship.). The Distill Group produces a number of South African whiskies (Three Ships, Bain’s Cape Mountain & Knights), a Scottish and South African blend (Harrier), and distributes several Scottish whiskies (The Scottish Leader, Black Bottle and Bunnahabhain) for Burn Stewart Distillers.
Tasting notes from the James Sedgwick Distillery:
The nose is floral, with just a hint of brine, plus barley, fresh pears and hessian. The palate is rounded and malty, well-balanced, with ripe peaches, honey and soft spices. The finish is medium in length, with aniseed and spice.
Now, for my review…
- Appearance: Light, golden honey color. Nice legs coat the inside of the glass.
- Aroma: Strong hints of astringent and oak then a floral scents with hints of vanilla, apples and pears.
- Taste: Very soft, well-balanced with a nice buttery flavor followed by a little warming at the back of the throat and a drying finish.
- ABV: 43%
This was a very nice find. What I would call a change-of-pace whisky. Not the peat bombs of Islay, or the heather fields of Ireland, just a nice, balanced whisky. As a final test, I passed a little to Pappy, the arbiter of all things balanced. He was quite pleased with the first glass and since he was outside of my Mother’s earshot, quickly asked for a refill. I would consider that high praise.