The official Dram Association review of

Shetland Reel Batch Number 3

"Caramel & Smoked Bacon Meringue"

The official Dram Association review of

Shetland Reel Batch Number 3

"Caramel & Smoked Bacon Meringue"

Dram Code: E73
Producer: Saxa Ford
Bottler: Official
Region: Scotland

Whisky Type: Blended Malt
Cask Type: Unknown
Age: Not Stated
ABV: 47%

Release: 1 of 1800
Price: $97.61 (at time of review)

Dram Code: E73
Producer: Saxa Ford
Bottler: Official
Region: Scotland
Whisky Type: Blended Malt
Cask Type: Unknown
Age: Not Stated
ABV: 47%
Release: 1 of 1800
Price: $97.61 (at time of review)

90.61/100

Flavour Profile:
Smoky & Earthy

Visual: 4.32 /5
Aroma: 22.16 /25

Taste: 35.92 /40
Finish: 28.21 /30

90.61/100

Flavour Profile: Smoky & Earthy

Visual: 4.32 /5 Aroma: 22.16 /25
Taste: 35.92 /40 Finish: 28.21 /30

About This Dram

Shameless self-indulgence time… two days ago was my birthday, so I wanted to open up a personal favourite bottle. I put a lot of effort into getting this one on our shelves, and now it’s time to share it with my fellow Dram Association members.

I was given a sample of this whisky quite a while ago and asked if I was interested in bringing it in. I was. I really was. The problem, however, was that the importer had already been approached by the government stores, so unless I could find a way to take the entire shipment off of their hands at once, I would likely miss out on this amazing dram. I immediately contacted my friends at Legacy in Vancouver and JAK’s across the mainland and we agreed that between the three of us we could take all of it. Me being the catalyst however, had to put my money where my mouth was and take a large percentage of it.

So, why was I so adamant about getting this whisky in? Well, firstly it is absolutely delicious. A beautifully balanced mix of smoke and salt on a big creamy malty base. Secondly, it is stunning value. Thirdly, it has a really neat story behind it.

Saxa Ford, on the Shetland Isle of Unst, is now the most northernly distillery in Scotland, beating the former record (Highland Park) by over 150km! While their own whisky is now starting to be made and put to sleep in casks, they wanted to see quite how much of an impact the Unst climate would have on a whisky. They started by using Glenglassaugh malt (a Dram Association favourite). That experiment was so successful that they released it as Shetland Reel. They have since been tweaking the Shetland Reel including an Islay (assumed, but not confirmed to be Caol Ila), and have come up with this luscious blend to highlight the character of this northern coastal maturation. It has been very successful and is already sold out on Master of Malt in the UK, which I believe was the exclusive retailer in the UK. Only 1800 were produced, so we are very lucky to see it here in BC. My advice – if you like it, buy two!

 

Tasting Notes

Nose: honey, smoke, bacon, toffee apple, salted caramel, puff pastry, semolina, pineapple, meringues

Palate: wood smoke, cream. banana, cherries, toasted coconut, honey nut cheerios.

by | Mar 8, 2020

Recent Dram Association Reviews

Read all about these whiskies, including Adam's notes and the official Dram Association group score!

How We Review Whiskies

Score

Whiskies are rated by our members on the visuals (out of 5), aroma (out of 25), taste (out of 40), & finish (out of 30). With a total score out of 100.

Based on how scoring occurred for our early reviews, the following guide is given to members -

0-60 awful • 60-70 bad • 70-80 okay • 80-85 good • 85-90 great • 90-95 awesome • 95+ amazing

The individual scores are collected, and outliers are removed via the "agreeable group" statistical method to reduce bias and taste preferences (ie, people who score a peated whisky lowly because they don't like peat). This gives us a better idea of the overall quality of the whisky in the eyes of our members.

 

Flavour Profile

Along with scoring the whisky, members are invited to choose up to three of the below flavour profiles which they think match the whisky. The profile that is most commonly chosen is then the official flavour profile for the dram.

fresh & floral
eg - blossoms, cut grass, apples, pears

fruity & spicy
eg - peach, vanilla, coconut, nutmeg

malty & dry
eg - breakfast cereal, nuts, cookies

rich & round
eg - raisins, figs, oak tannins, dates

smoky & earthy
eg - wood smoke, bacon, iodine

 

Dram Association Nickname

The nickname is usually given by the writer of the initial review and tasting notes. It is based on their tasting notes and used to refer to the whisky to keep its true identity hidden for those who enjoy blind tasting.