Reviving England’s Whisky Production – The English “Original” 43%

St.George’s Distillery in the UK (not to be confused with the Californian St George), was founded in 2005 by James Nelstrop and his son. Whilst initially they had a micro distillery in mind, the permit would only come with a full blown operation – so that’s exactly what they decided to set-up!

Taking advice from whisky expert Iain Henderson, production began in 2007 with both peated and unpeated standards. We were introduced to the unpeated “Original” one fine evening in Mumbai, early January 2022 – sampled blind.

We started with The English… what were our impressions?

  • Nose – Citrus, resin, sharp alcohol, pine, green apple, boiled sweet, shy, allspice, as opened up becomes sweeter
  • Palate – A piquant spice, curry leaf, very bitter – Allspice? Dry mace flower (Javithri)… has quite a dry mouthfeel
  • Finish – Bitter… like bitter almond (which is a bit off), or that slightly salty dried Chinese sour cherry, one sampler even found a bit of licorice

Overall? We found that the nose required a bit of a workout, we really needed to carefully pay attention to be rewarded with a few different elements. It had many of the right ingredients however it felt a bit like it wasn’t quite there yet…

As we were tasting blind, our speculation turned to cask – we thought likely an ex-bourbon cask. We weren’t convinced it was a typical Scottish single malt… but no clue beyond that.

And the reveal?

Interesting and a good introduction to this English distillery. This whisky also stood up well with a cigar – which is always a good thing with these gens!

What did the folks at The English have to say about their “Original” standard?

The English – Original. Aged to perfection in specially selected Bourbon Casks. An unpeated single malt whisky. A great easy-drinking classic single malt

With their official tasting notes:

A gentle aroma with hints of vanilla and tropical fruits. Like a soft whipped vanilla ice cream. Melts on the palate. Slightly nutty with a long malty finish. Finish is clean, dry and slightly salty.

This whisky retails for GBP 42.50.

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