Whisky Tasting – Mackmyra

Mackmyra Special 10How time flies.
I seem to get less time to update this, but a recent tasting session has given me more motivation. I became familiar with Mackmyra years ago after a friend handed me some unlabelled cask samples. Each whisky was honey-sweet and very palatable.

Years later, i had the opportunity to sample the wider Mackmyra portfolio at a whisky tasting event hosted, as ever, by The Wright Wine and Whisky Company from Skipton.

Mackmyra, for those of you who don’t know, is Swedish and the company founded in 1999. They use many Swedish influences in their whisky – Swedish oak, local ingredients and local peat. As you’d expect, they are immensely proud and passionate about their whisky, and for good reason too.What particularly impressed me was the attention to detail which goes into this, and that is reflected by the bottles and packaging. Initially, a simple yet bold design, but when you look harder, there logo/icon appears chiseled out of the cork stopper, the glass of the bottle has the impression from 7 fingers (each of the founding members).. It’s a really great looking product. But what about the taste.

Not surprisingly, Mackmyra is a young whisky. Surprisingly, there’s no hint of new make to anything I have tried.

Mackmyra boxesBruckswhisky
Described as “hangover friendly” this is a young, light, floral everyday dram. It’s not one for contemplation over long evenings by a roaring fire. It’s pleasant, it’s certainly drinkable.
Bottled at 41%.

1st Edition
1st Edition as it’s from their first release of Whisky. Again, light and floral but this time with more nose and depth. There’s influence from Swedish Oak used on the end of the casks, a touch more spice and hint of bourbon. This sweetness is common throughout the Mackmyra range. 46.1%

Special 04 Double Dip
Noew we’re talking. This has more fight to it, and as an Islay-lover, it was welcome. Not peat and phenol though, this has been “double-dipped” in Bourbon which of course plays on the sweet caramel flavours you would expect. More complex to nose too – but more rewarding because of this.
I’m sure this was quoted as being 53%.

Special 05 Happy Hunting
This bottling is really getting into the Swedish element of Mackmyra. Influenced by forest walks, it has been matured in casks previously used for Lingonberry (new one on me too) and Blueberry wine. Again, much more on the nose and palate to contend with and provided a more satisfying fruity finish.

Special 06 Summer Meadow
You can see by the names what they are trying to achieve here. This has been matured in ex-bourbon and ex-sherry casks.  As you’d expect, the nose is strong and again, a more lasting finish than the earlier samples. Delecate yet powerful. Very nice.

Special 07 Hope
If the previous 2 give a hint of what’s to come, then what does “Hope” suggest?
A hint of peat (from very close to the distillery – they’re resourceful lot these Swedes), and did she say ‘Cloudberry’?
Im loving the way they are making this their own whisky. The influences from their geography is great and really makes it unique and gives it a place on the shelves with other whiskies. What strikes me about hope. Bananas. Yep.

Special 08 Handpicked
Well my notes say “Handpicked” but other research tells me ‘Sauternes Cask’ (for the fact it is matured in ex-Sauternes casks, a French sweet wine region).
The ever-present honey sweetness I found in all the previous drinks is enhanced here and there’s influence of wood and fruit too.
A great conclusion to a great range.

Conclusion
Whisky is so varied from distillery to distillery, region to region and country to country. I see a place for Mackmyra and the attention to detail tells me they are great at marketing or simply passionate about what they do. What i love is that they have created their niche and they are not simply mimicking what else is out there. The influences from Sweden really make this what it is. They’re a great story for Sweden and all that is good about it. They’re a progressive distillery, but don’t let that word make you shudder.
Pay attention. I have a feeling they’re just getting going.

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