Food24 was invited to taste a whisky that embodies a taste like no other. A whisky packed with fruity flavours like dates and figs and an after taste like that of chocolate cake. This Whisky is the first of its kind in South Africa due to the use of Spanish sherry grapes, that give the whisky a PX finish and a subtle fragrant sweetness.
Three Ships Whisky, the pioneer of the South African whisky industry, has made history yet again with the launch of a rare single-cask single malt whisky to showcase the extraordinary whisky crafted at The James Sedgwick Distillery in Wellington.
Only 800 bottles of the Three Ships 10 Year Old Single Malt Single Cask PX Finish whisky, bottled by hand and numbered, have been released by master distiller Andy Watts. Distilled in 2005, the whisky was initially matured for eight years and ten months in American oak where after a small quantity was selected to spend a further 14 months in a cask in which Pedro Ximenez (PX) sherry had previously been matured.
Presented in its purist form, the whisky is un-chillfiltered, natural in colour and bottled at 46.2% alcohol by volume to enhance the complexity and flavours of this elegant malt.
Says Andy: “Local whisky lovers have long been asking me to produce something extra special and while cask finishes have been produced for many years around the globe, it was time for Three Ships to make history for the South African whisky industry. Although the challenges presented by different cask finishes have occupied us for a number of years, we didn’t want to release a new whisky just to satisfy the demand. The product had to be right in every aspect and I believe what we have here was certainly worth the wait.”
Andy experimented with various casks for a few years before selecting the PX for the particular effect it has on whiskies with a presence of smoke and peat. “Pedro Ximenez is a white Spanish wine grape varietal used for the production of a sweet-style sherry. The raisiny richness it imparts to the cask was the perfect finishing touch I wanted to complement the smokiness of our single malt with some sweet, nutty flavours.”
Andy selected only a small percentage of the limited edition Three Ships single malt he had been working on at the time (due for release in 2016) to spend a finishing period in a single PX cask.
“The end result has not disappointed and the decision to produce only one cask has turned this whisky into a very rare collector’s item.”
The Three Ships 10 Year Old Single Malt Single Cask PX finish is complex with delicate sweet notes from the sherry cask which lifts the nose with prunes, dates, figs and fruitcake and combines effortlessly with the elegant smokiness of the malt. The whisky is powerful and lingering in its taste and finish.
Available from 27 October only online at www.threeshipswhisky.co.za, Norman Goodfellows, Whisky Brother and Vinoteque. The limited edition will retail for about R850.