Cut Spike Single Malt Whiskey
I am taking a little detour of late, to explore some single malt whisky that is not scotch. I have recently put together tasting notes on a mesquite smoked single malt whiskey from Arizona, and another from India. Today, I am venturing very close to home, tasting a single malt whiskey from right here in Nebraska, Cut Spike Single Malt Whiskey.
I had become intrigued with tasting this single malt after I heard that it had won some awards. In particular, this whiskey won the 2014 Double Gold Award at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition. In 2016, Cut Spike Single Malt Whiskey was awarded a Gold Award at the same competition. Given that I live within 50 miles of the distillery, it was not difficult to obtain a bottle.
There is a lot that I found unique about this whiskey as I started reading. It is made from malted barley and limestone-filtered water from the sandhills of Nebraska. The whiskey is distilled in copper pot stills imported from Scotland. The finish takes a bourbon-like turn as they age the whiskey for two years in new charred American oak barrels.
Cut Spike Single Malt Whiskey is bottled at 43% ABV, non-chill filtered, with no coloring added. The bottle I sampled is from Batch #4.
On the nose, I immediately get sweetness. I sense honey element, probably because it seems to have a little floral base. But, overall, the nose is not easy for me to capture. In time, I get some orange in the sweetness along with oak and just a bit of charcoal.
The first sip brings a bit of a sweet-spicy light burn, that quickly fades. Then, I get vanilla, some floral, orange, and some oak on the back. It is sweet throughout. But, more of a mix and balance of flavors than I would expect in this young a whiskey. The finish is rich and relatively short.
I really like this whiskey. It is a fun dram with a unique profile. I would not think that many would mistake this for a scotch in a blind tasting. But I think that many scotch drinkers would enjoy this whiskey, particularly if they have preferences that lean toward the sherry influenced single malts.
Lest you think I am too effusive because it is a local whiskey, I did a quick look and found a couple other reviews online that give Cut Spike Single Malt Whiskey a positive assessment.