Always the dutiful son, I purchased a Whisky Advent Calendar for my Pappy from Master of Malt. This works out well as he has just about everything he could possibly need, and he loves his whiskey. As an added bonus, I sometimes get a dreg or two returned as the sample was so good, that Pappy saved me some. Or, I might get a whole sample if it smells a little too peaty. Pappy, a former Philadelphia fireman, does not like smokey whisky. Let’s just say that the aroma of “burned down house” is most definitely NOT in his wheelhouse.
When Pappy quizzed me on the Haig Club, I had to admit that I didn’t know anything about the brand. So while I did some research, Pappy gave it a try. He really enjoyed it and saved me just the smallest taste to accompany my research. A trip to the interwebz revealed some good things: Haig & Haig make the Dimple Pinch (a quick scan of my Pinch dusty from the 1950’s, and sure enough, the Haig name is there) and they had a cool Mad Men-esque slogan: “Don’t be vague, ask for Haig“. I also discovered some not so good things: Haig is a part of the Diageo Empire (I see them as sort of the Darth Vader of liquor). And, then I found some things that have left me a bit unsure as to just how I feel…
I appear to have digressed. Anyway, the tiny sample piqued my curiosity and while out at my local purveyor on an unrelated purchase (who am I kidding? All of these trips are most definitely related), I was greeted by the proprietor with a hearty, “Hello, my friend!”, and a “Look what I have that is new!”. I may have mentioned once or twice before that I am quite susceptible to pretty, shiny packaging. Let’s just say that after I saw the square blue bottle with the heavy copper top, I was sold. Now let’s get on with the review!
Here’s what Haig says about their Haig Club whisky…
The liquid has been crafted using a unique process that combines grain whisky from three cask types. This creates a fresh, clean style that showcases butterscotch and toffee for an ultra-smooth taste. Seen by many to be Scotland’s hidden gem, single grain whisky is being predicted by experts as the next trend in whisky
And here are my impressions…
- ABV: 40%
- Appearance: About the color of apple juice.
- Aroma: Astringent, popcorn butter, 3-in-1 oil on a rag and hibiscus.
- Taste: Lots of alcohol vapor on the front end followed by some Lyle’s Golden Syrup and toffee and then a little bit of Lifesavers Wint-O-Green (more spicy pepper than mint, but still some mint in there).
I really wasn’t expecting all that much as I have been mislead by pretty packaging before. Usually, the shinier the bottle, the worse I find the contents. This was certainly not the case with the Haig Club. This is a hidden gem. I really liked the blend of flavors. Quite syrupy (which I love), but with enough heat and spice to keep it interesting. I even went back and had a little bit of the dusty Pinch (12 yr. old blended, @1950’s, 46% ABV) to compare. The Pinch is really good; the Haig Club might be great.