It all went paps up for Jura… or did it?

“I will not rest until I get a Pap in my mouth” – Chris pronounced yesterday after finding out that I had had some Jura Paps action over the weekend, while he had been searching for a  pair of real ones to appreciate down in London.

Good luck mate, I hope you succeed finding someone in Edinburgh who will provide the service for you. But let’s be realistic for a moment. You will probably have to pay for it and, since the prices for Pap-sucking in the capital are rather exorbitant (£100 for a bottle, £10 for a nip), I shall not wait until you do. Instead I will describe the Paps here to the best of my ability for your and other readers’ enjoyment.

Isle of Jura Mountain of Sound
15 years old
Cabernet Sauvignon finish
46% ABV
£96.99 from them

Nose: Juron* is prominent. Underpinned by roses, pralines and toffee. Water brings out more house-style.

Palate: Slight fruitiness… fruit-gums-like in fact. Thick, silky texture. Quite one-dimensional.

Finish: Peppery and fiery.

Overall: Despite the familiar Juron on the nose, it doesn’t really compare to any one of the core range. The wine influence is not strong but it’s still quite obvious. Unfortunately it doesn’t work for me. Maybe the juice is acceptable, but not at this price!

****

Isle of Jura Mountain of Gold
15 years old
Pinot Noir finish
46% ABV
£96.99 from them

Nose: Vanilla punch, bread and butter pudding! Overripe banana, toffee apple, berries. Quite heavy and complex. Not bad at all. Much less of the house-style which in this case, I am sorry to say, is only for the better.

Palate: Disappointing. Leathery, nutty and spicy notes, but also loads of unpleasant dryness. Just doesn’t deliver what the nose promises.

Finish: Chilli, black pepper. Good development.

Overall: On the nose promises to be much better than Cab Sauvignon finish, but it just doesn’t deliver when tasted. Goes all paps up with water. I was well disappointed. Especially after tasting Arran Pinot Noir finish with The Tasters of The Apocalypse a few weeks back, which is less than half the price and spectacularly good.

****

Isle of Jura Sacred Mountain
15 years old
Barolo finish
46% ABV
£96.99 from them

Nose: Menthol and reduced apple sauce (Food Match Alert! Roast Pork). Light oak, blackcurrant bitterness, raisin sweetness. Juron as a backdrop but in a good way. The fruitiest and sweetest of the three.

Palate: Yes, yes, yes! At last! Heavy presence, good kick – that’s what I am looking for! Complexity, development, texture, it’s all there. Chocolate, raisins and damp oak dominate. Bitter walnut.

Finish: Surprisingly smooth but developing chocolaty.

Overall: By a Roman mile the best of the three, perfectly enjoyable and different from both the core range and the other two Paps. It has the integrity, the harmony and the punch the others lack. I would be happy to pay £30 for a bottle. Coming from me, a full-time student, it should be considered the ultimate praise.

****

I would like to point out that my enjoyment of the Pap-sucking session was far greater than the sum of the enjoyments brought to me by the three whiskies. A synergy. It is an ultimate whisky-geek’s set, an opportunity to compare exactly the same spirit matured for the same period of time in the same place, but finished in three different wine casks. And even if it’s not to everyone’s taste (two of the three are not to mine), it is a great thing to have.

F**king shame about the price though. Whyte & Mackay did not resist temptation to follow our new industry rule: If you don’t know how much something is worth, just take a guess and then multiply it by three, making a total pap of yourself in the eyes of your customers.

I could not care less about these whiskies’ collectable value. For me asking £100 for a bottle of 15 yo Jura is a bloody insult. Although I guess it still pales in comparison to £300 for 9 yo Oban, eh?

Lucas

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*Juron – a term developed and first introduced by Edinburgh Whisky Blog, describing an aroma specific to single malt whisky from the Isle of Jura distillery. The aroma of Juron is also often described as cheddar cheese, blue cheese, cottage cheese, cold pizza cheese, socks, feet, armpits or even (wrongly!) sulphur. The creators of the term do not consider it offensive and, in fact, fully appreciate the assertive character of the malt from Jura. It remains debatable whether the term can be used while describing whiskies from other distilleries.

Comments

  1. I can only say I agree about the absurd pricing. Mind you, the über-swanky packaging is probably worth about a third of the cost of a set, but that hardly enhances anyone’s pleasure with the dram. If it had even been an honest single cask (or at least cask strength) release, it wouldn’t have been as outrageously over the top a price as it is now. Compare for example with the SC/NCS 29-year-old Caol Ilas bottled in June by Bladnoch and sold at £46 per bottle…

    I was lucky enough (well, depends how you see it I guess) to win the Paps set off Willie Tait’s little prize draw on What Does John Know, and I opened it with a few of my kinsmen last Friday. Must admit, it was pretty much what I expected: generally fairly underwhelming, apart from the Barolo which I could actually enjoy. I’ll have to have a proper nosing one of these days and see what’s really there to each of them.

  2. Ha ha, Juron. Yuck

  3. Surely that should be Juranian

  4. Guys, if you posted these notes over at The Diurachs facebook page that may count towards the free stay at the Jura Lodge (if you haven’t already entered that is).

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