Wemyss Malts: Blooming Gorse & Flaming Feast

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Wemyss Malts have added two more blended malts to their Family Collection range, and in keeping with previous releases ‘Vanilla Burst’ and ‘Treacle Chest’, they’ve named each of the new expressions after their respective key flavour profiles; Blooming Gorse and Flaming Feast.

Blooming Gorse is a combination of two Highland single malts matured in a total of fifteen 1st fill ex-bourbon barrels and hogsheads. Flaming Feast, on the other hand, is a marriage of fifteen casks from two distilleries; one from the east highlands and one from a west coast island. The cask recipe comprises 1st fill ex-bourbon barrels and de-char/re-char ex-bourbon casks.

Wemyss Malts Brand Manager and Blender, Steven Shand, commented on the releases, saying: “The brief we set for these blended malts was to really illustrate the diversity of Highland malt whisky and show that there really is no one Highland regional style. Casks selected for the Family Collection are always very well balanced with active oak therefore the recipes were purposely kept simple. We selected casks from only a few single malt varieties for each blend to find complementing flavours that establish depth and complexity once combined and left to marry.”

Let’s get to them.

Blooming Gorse Blended Malt
Wemyss Malts
6,900 bottles
46% ABV
£45.95 here 

Nose: Lemon zest, icing sugar, pick ‘n’ mix sweets, pineapple humps, fresh laundry, some white pepper and green wood.

Palate: White mice, ginger, lemon drizzle cake, green bananas, vanilla icing, candy sticks and freshly sawn oak.

Finish: Quite creamy, with vanilla Angel Delight, digestive biscuits and new oak.

Flaming Feast Blended Malt
Wemyss Malts
6,000 bottles
46% ABV
£47.95 here

Nose: Initially very clean, with maritime notes and rockpools, then some aromatic smoke and a fruitiness emerges – stewed plums, apricots with some charred oak.

Palate: Sweet cured meat, BBQ embers, rock salt, and a peat hearth. Quite floral too, with some Parma Violets and a hint of Turkish Delight. A touch soapy.

Finish: Lingering smoke, snuffed bonfire and a touch of baking spice.

Overall: Two very quaffable, if relatively straight forward whiskies. They do what they say on the tin too – Blooming Gorse is indeed very light, sweet and easy going, with the Flaming Feast offering a more robust, smoky, BBQ-y experience. Mid-forties is a bit high in terms of asking price, and I feel that’s where a lot of Wemyss releases fall down – not just the blended malts but the single cask releases too. Tasty enough whisky, just an off-putting price tag.



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