DC’s Jack Rose Selection “Juicy Juice”
Penderyn has slowly become one of my favorite distilleries. I have 5 or 6 single cask selections on my shelf and sampled a few others. Their malt and cask rotations seem to excel well above my expectations. Only a handful of casks hit US store shelves every year and once you get hooked, it’s impossible to resist.
This is the second Jack Rose Penderyn selection and I picked up this bottle after a couple of anniversary pours back in May of 2023. If I remember correctly, this was finished for 4-5 years in a PX cask and I somehow, luckily have bottle number 1!
This bottle is still available to purchase at Jack Rose and you can always grab a pour at the bar to give it a try.
Region: Pontpren, Aberdare, UK.
Age: 7 Years.
Cask type: Pedro Ximénez finish (~4 years).
Color: 1.6, Mahogany. Natural Color. Minimal filtration.
Tasted neat in a Glencairn glass with 15+ minutes of rest. A small amount of dilution was added with an additional rest of about half an hour.
Nose: Floral malt aromas of Turkish delight. Sweet Summer fruits and honey. Raisin, caramelized bananas, nectarines, and table grapes. Ginger and star anise. Bread pudding. Nilla wafers. An earthy and musty oak note like a stone wall wine cellar. Mineral-rich wet slate and mossy river rocks. The last residual note is a lovely expressed orange zest that rounds out the nose quite wonderfully.
Palate: Toasted spices and a lovely bitter oak balance. Light stewed fruits. Metals and minerals. Allspice dram, almonds, and clove cigarettes. Not smoked but cured meat. Mince pie with its sweet and savory flavors and buttery crust. At times I got a fruit sweetness but also a caramelized onion and pot roast vibe.
Finish: Starts out with a sweet jammy flavor intermixed with a lovely rich tobacco note. Creamed sugars, blackberry compote, pie crumble topping. Behind these sweeter flavors is a robust oak that unfortunately as time goes on, devolves into a dry tannic nature and my only real nag about this bottle. Metallic notes pop up on the finish like copper pennies and cast iron. It’s like a slice of apple after you previously used the knife to dice an onion. A bit of a savory element even with a touch of rendered beef tallow.
I like this Penderyn pick a fair bit more than the last Jack Rose selection. The rich and savory PX works nicely with the Welsh whisky.
The malt is a little hidden but not by much. The character isn’t overwhelmed by any means but there’s also no doubt that this whisky is from a wine cask. I’m happy to notice the ex-bourbon floral and sweet notes at least on the nose. The px cask however takes over on the palate and finish. You get that mix of both sweet and savory elements and the mince pie note is certainly the perfect descriptor for this whiskey.
I have to say this gives other Penderyn bottles a run for their money. My previous favorite was a 15-year rich oak bottling and it still might be my favorite but this is so, so close. I’m happy that more single casks are arriving in the States because Penderyn is dropping some amazing whiskey these days.
Final Score: 91