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Turntable Spirits - Blended Whisky - 2nd Release

The second 3-bottle batch release from the Stevenson Brothers at Turntable Spirits. Like the first release, this one showcases three styles of whisky that reminds us that blended whiskies can flip a rather large bird to the anti-blend brigade.

I personally think we're going through a joint renaissance period of Independent Bottlers (IB's) and blended whisky. As I mentioned in my review for Turntables first batch release, this is good for 2 reasons:

  1. IB's have more to prove, so their selections and choices of what they bottle needs to be top notch and consistently good. One duff release, and it can be quite damaging to their reputation - especially when they're a new company. So you are generally likely to get some really high quality liquid in their releases.

  2. Blends can be astonishing. Choosing different ratios of multiple whiskies and blending them together can result in absolutely glorious new flavours and experiences. It's a mixture of know-how and alchemy in perfect harmony.

The Turntable Spirits brand, language, and personality gives a big nod to the music industry with each release paying homage to well known music tracks or genre by various groups, and dropping in music buzzwords in the descriptions. It's quite clever and unique.

But Turntable Spirits go one step further by disclosing not just the distilleries that make up the liquid, but also the ratios of the whisky used to make up the blend. That's great for a lot of consumers as we can clearly see exactly what's in the mix. You can't beat a bit of transparency.

The three bottles in this release are:

Paradise Funk - 46%

13% Knockdhu Virgin Oak Barrel

20% Benrinnes Chinkapin Barrel

18% Invergordon ex-Cognac Barrel

8% Blair Athol Bourbon Barrel

30% Unnamed Speyside Virgin Oak Barrel

11% North British Virgin Oak Barrel


Appearance: Golden amber with flecks of gold

Nose: Fudge, ripe apples, penny toffee, vanilla custard, and a hint of mint toffee at the edges.

Palate: Vanilla with a sweet & nutty note. A hint of coconut flesh and a warming pepper tickle on the tongue.

Finish: Medium-long with a warming nutty sweetness and some oily toffee.

Bittersweet Symphony - 46%

22% Craigellachie PX Puncheon

17% Blair Athol Virgin Oak Barrel

21% Craigellachie Oloroso Butt

21% Balmenach PX Puncheon

19% North British Virgin Oak Barrel

Appearance: Polished Pine.

Nose: Sherry baby, yeah. Raisins & nuts with some gentle funky sherry-soaked oakiness and dark dried cherries.

Palate: Sweet & deep spice at first that then tapers off to a softer sherried sweetness. Coco, dates, and a soft chilli tingle at the end.

Finish: Long and sweet with a drying oilyness. The faintest hint of tobacco leaf at the very end on the exhale.

Smokin' Riff - 46%

21% Knockdhu PX Puncheon

18% Caol Ila Bourbon Barrel

24% Craigellachie PX Puncheon

9% Caol Ila ex-Red Wine Barrel

28% North British Virgin Oak Barrel

Appearance: Sparkling golden amber.

Nose: I just put my hand into the dying fire in my log burner to move a log. Sweetness and damp grass, BBQ smoke, freshly baked sponge cake.

Palate: A laid-back, lovely sweet-peat coating with some sherry sweetness and vanilla. Some fruit pie pastry verging on being well-baked.

Finish: Long with honey-sweet oil & peat.

Overall conclusion

Absolutely superb quality liquid and great value for money. I'd pit these against many a single malt in a blind taste, and like the previous batch release, I particularly like the way all three bottles cover a different style of whisky. From classic Speyside, to sherried Highland, to off-coast peat.

A big thank you to Ally & Gordon for sending me some samples. My personal favourite is the Smokin' Riff.

Available at various retailers for around £50 per bottle at the time of writing. See my retailer list for places to buy.


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