The first edition of “Brewer’s Whisky” bottling (dubbed Spicy Hummus) was quite a success locally (as far as I can see from reviews and comment online), and was quickly followed by edition #2 which is a bit different : this time we’re talking ‘real’ beer distillation. The beer (or wash) was made at the Golan Heights brewery (which is a different business altogether), and David Z, has chosen the Amber ale , made at the GH brewery (sold under the “Bazaelet” brand) as the base product for the distillation. The previous edition was quite hoppy even after the distillation, and I was quite interested to see how the Amber ale would taste after a similar distillation. The distillate was aged for 2 years in Ex-Golani Black (a young double grain whisky aged in new american oak at the GH distillery – and essentially similar to a first fill ex-bourbon sort of cask) and bottled at 50% abv, and retails for 200 ILS locally (~ $57 – online on the distillery FB page). It is of course NCF, and presented without Caramel coloring.
Let’s have a wee taste…
Nose: Citrusy and fresh, with eucalyptus , it also posses a nice hoppy edge, wood and spice along a sweet honeyed notes, vanilla and Chamomile. All in all this is a very fresh, and vibrant nose, fun to nose without being over complex.
Palate: Quite a bit of hoppiness over here which is very nice, it’s really surprising how much of the initial hoppy character of the beer is retained after distillation! Bitter, with oranges and lemon peel, and also a good measure of wood tannins (which come from the ex-Golani Black cask which is very active). Further nosing reveals hints of clove, pepper and some vanilla with an added sweetness of orange flavored bitter chocolate.
Finish: Nice hoppy notes, citrus, and a sweet note as well, drying with more oak and the citrus fruit going a long way.
A fun spirit indeed. It’s fruity, hoppy and funky, but in a good way. If you’re looking for a nice sipper, and want some variation , this is a good option. Looking forward to the 3rd edition which is going to be quite different so I am told… Beer fans, will love this. Recommended.