These bottles made for The Whisky Exchange’s Whisky Show 2021 depict whisky-themed superheroes and were created to be viewed while wearing 3D glasses. (Photo: The Whisky Exchange)
This year’s Whisky Show, an annual event hosted by the Whisky Exchange, includes a series of single cask bottlings that come with a special twist this year: Those who view the bottles are meant to do so while wearing 3D glasses.
The theme of this year’s show is “A Journey Through Flavour.” That theme inspired the designs of these bottles, which were created by Elixir Distillers creative director, Raj ‘MrC’ Chavda, exclusively for The Whisky Exchange.
“When considering the show theme, I started to think about what makes up flavours and imagined these compounds as the heroes of whisky,” Chavda said in a news release.
Indeed, Chavda’s designs depict superheroes. He created designs that when viewed through 3D glasses will appear three-dimensional. Here are details about each bottle and its corresponding superhero:
“Congeners” are substances produced during fermentation that include small amounts of chemicals that give certain flavors to whiskies. This 20-year-old Speyside malt is bottled at 57.6% ABV and costs £135 ($182) for a 700-milliliter bottle.
Nose: A balance of raisin fruitiness and savoury leafy bracken notes. Fruity cherries, and buttery an almondy Cherry Bakewells build. Green and leafy notes hide beneath, joined by runny caramel, stewed apple and white-wine-poached pears.
Palate: Buttered sponge cake, candied orange, butter cream and baking spice. Rich and creamy notes build, followed by sweet apple and pear jam, a touch of blackcurrant and some barrel char. Buttered malt loaf, mincemeat and more spice bring up the rear.
Finish: Blackcurrant on spiced fruit loaf. Damp oak and lingering leafiness.
This bottling from Bunnahabhain Distillery is 19 years old and bottled at 54.3% ABV. A 700-milliliter bottle costs £150 ($203). The name of the superhero is a nod to esterification, the process by which flavor molecules are created during fermentation, distillation and aging.
Nose: Rich fruit and damp leaves – forest floors covered in rogue raisins. Toffee apples and toffee sauce build with apple crumble and a dollop of rich vanilla custard. Raisin jam, malt loaf and butter cookies fill in the gaps.
Palate: Thick on the palate and very rich. A touch of forest pond and bracken-covered earth is overtaken by dark chocolate sauce and heavily spiced fruit cake – buttery nutmeg and hot cinnamon. Cake-batter notes develop, sweet and creamy.
Finish: Spiced apple purée, toasted rye bread and a drizzle of custard on bread-and-butter pudding.
This 41-year-old blended scotch whisky is bottled at 46.2% ABV and costs £240 ($324) for a 700-milliliter bottle. Aldehydes are compounds created during the whisky-making process through oxidization.
Nose: Fruit cake with lots of fruit: glacé cherries, sultanas, plump raisins and juicy dates, all topped with fruity caramel. Ginger cake develops, as well as leafy notes and damp earth. Polished oak, candied orange peel and spiced dark chocolate build.
Palate: Fruit loaf studded with singed raisins and spread with raisin jam is joined by charred staves, baked apples and woody spice with notes of candied pear developing. Riverbank loam and damp bark emerge, balanced by spiced toffee, dark chocolate, and black cherries and their stones.
Finish: Damp oak, cherry stones, char, lingering dark chocolate and singed orange.
The Phenolic Phantom
This 20-year-old peated malt from Ardbeg Distillery is bottled at 51.4% ABV and full of tarry phenols, hence the name. A 700-milliliter bottle of this scotch will set you back £450 ($608).
Nose: Sea spray and oily smoke. Darker notes of tarry ropes are balanced by singed citrus and buttery lemon shortbread. Orchard fruit – sharp apples and sweet apple purée – are dusted with icing sugar. Mulchy grass and fallen leaves roll in around the edges.
Palate: Sweet and smoky, with apple-and-cinnamon syrup poured over warm croissants, all topped with baked apples and pears. Mintiness builds through the middle followed by green leaves and driftwood. Seaside smokiness and salty sea air surrounds everything.
Finish: Singed oak, sweet apple and soft spice fade to leave barbecued fruit.
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