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Any One for a Scotch? - Page 128

post #1906 of 3221

But as neither kelp nor seawater have any direct contact with the barley or the Scotch, how else is it going to get in there except via the peat smoke?

 

(I suppose you could argue that the seawater makes it in via brine in the air, but then you'd expect all coastal single malts to display significant iodine flavors, no?)

 

It's an interesting question - I certainly don't have a definitive answer.

post #1907 of 3221
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gibonius View Post

I had assumed the iodine flavor was actually coming from iodine, as kelp and seawater in general are loaded with it. That's just a guess though.

That was my assumption as well.
post #1908 of 3221
Just had some Oban 14, that right there is the shit.
post #1909 of 3221
It;s 5:00 somewhere.
post #1910 of 3221

Oban's awesome. Pricey but awesome.

post #1911 of 3221
Quote:
Originally Posted by Longmorn View Post

But as neither kelp nor seawater have any direct contact with the barley or the Scotch, how else is it going to get in there except via the peat smoke?

(I suppose you could argue that the seawater makes it in via brine in the air, but then you'd expect all coastal single malts to display significant iodine flavors, no?)


It's an interesting question - I certainly don't have a definitive answer.

Yes, via the smoke certainly.

Isn't that a characteristic to one degree or another of all Islay malts? Even some mainland but coastal distilleries are characterized by medicinal flavours, IIRC.

The salt water and even chunks of kelp may bet blown up onto the Moor and become part of the peat.

I once read a review that said that Old Pulteny tastes like Lapsang souchong.

Now that's intriguing!
post #1912 of 3221
Tomorrow:

http://heightschateau.com/calendar/

If anyone is interested, its free single malt tastings at Heights Chateau...I can't make it, but if you're around may be worth the trip.
post #1913 of 3221
Quote:
Originally Posted by DWFII View Post


Yes, via the smoke certainly.

Isn't that a characteristic to one degree or another of all Islay malts? Even some mainland but coastal distilleries are characterized by medicinal flavours, IIRC.

The salt water and even chunks of kelp may bet blown up onto the Moor and become part of the peat.

I once read a review that said that Old Pulteny tastes like Lapsang souchong.

Now that's intriguing!

 

Old Pulteney 12 is definitely not peaty - there's a little smoke, but no iodine. Briney (sea air) but not peaty. Not sure how the reviewer got Lapsang Souchong - I would definitely associate that more with traditional Islays.

 

There's a good discussion of the differences in peat and differences in peating the barley from Highland Park here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KnW6F6co_G8 

 

 I think perhaps we're stumbling over whether the term 'phenolics' accounts for all the different flavors imparted via peat smoke, or only those typically associated with 'peatiness'. I assumed that phenols would include the flavoring elements of the smoke (again, given that phenolic compounds are associated with everything from raspberry to clove to creosote flavors) but I could be wrong.

 

EDIT: Looking back over the list of ppm I posted earlier, Bunnahabain and Bruichladdich both have lower ppm than Highland Park, but definitely taste more 'peaty' to me than HP. 

 

There's a good discussion of variation across different types of peat here: http://whiskyscience.blogspot.com/2011/02/peat.html 


Edited by Longmorn - 1/28/13 at 1:41pm
post #1914 of 3221
Quote:
Originally Posted by Longmorn View Post

But as neither kelp nor seawater have any direct contact with the barley or the Scotch, how else is it going to get in there except via the peat smoke?

I think his point was that the iodine flavor is coming from the iodine, not from phenols even if both may be coming from the peat smoke.
post #1915 of 3221
Quote:
Originally Posted by Longmorn View Post


There's a good discussion of variation across different types of peat here: http://whiskyscience.blogspot.com/2011/02/peat.html 

A closer look at the flavour wheels on the WhiskyScience blog reveals that iodine and other medicinal flavours are indeed associated with phenols. So...while some peats are higher in phenol producing material (spagnum) most of the higher PPM malts will to one extent or the other exhibit some iodine and medicine along with smoke.

Maybe that explains why some peaty malts can tastes more medicinal than others. But Lagavulin doesn't taste near as medicinal as Laphroaig (to my palate) yet they aren't that far apart PPM.
post #1916 of 3221

I keep hoping that my work will get a gas chromatograph mass spectrometer that I can play with. We keep getting close, but not quite.

 

As Longmorn noted, the phenols are a huge class of aromatic compounds that is primarily responsible for what we describe as a peaty character in many whiskys. Although we lump them together when measuring the phenol content from different distilleries, that masks the fact that the composition of the phenols varies across those distilleries. My understanding about the sea/iodine flavors is that the peat from some of the coastal and Island distillerys has a both a decent amount of seaweed in it as well as simply having gotten a lot of seawater in the bogs over the eons. Both contribute the medicinal notes to whisky. Some of the peat bogs are quite ancient, and I don't think a direct correlation to location today vs. where the sea used to be can be made.

 

The composition of phenols further varies based on the way the malting is actually done; the temperature at which the malt is roasted, for how long, etc, and distilleries often order their malt from larger malting houses. I presume that would normalize the flavors from that particular malting, whereas the distillerys which have their own maltings are often quite jealous of their peat bogs and can make a more distinctive malting for their whisky. On Islay, for instance, the Port Ellen maltings supplies many of the Islay distilleries, who order their malt based on phenol content. I would imagine then, that all the malts from Port Ellen to have a similar character (changing in intensity, but not composition per se with ppm); but a distillery like Laphroaig that has its own maltings probably has a completely different character in its malt as it sources its own peat, uses its own process/temperatures, etc.

 

They also say that sea flavors can be imparted as the casks breathe over the 10-12 years the whiskys age. And the wharehouses come in all different styles to alter how the air flows over the casks, so that has an effect also.

 

~ H

post #1917 of 3221
Boom, scienced! biggrin.gif

Thanks for the informative post, Huntsman.
post #1918 of 3221
Had a bruichladdich rocks with the boys along with Fuente cigars.
post #1919 of 3221
Quote:
Originally Posted by Huntsman View Post

I keep hoping that my work will get a gas chromatograph mass spectrometer that I can play with. We keep getting close, but not quite.

I actually did that as part of a lab in undergrad. We didn't get to pick the liquor though.
post #1920 of 3221
Quote:
Originally Posted by DWFII View Post

A closer look at the flavour wheels on the WhiskyScience blog reveals that iodine and other medicinal flavours are indeed associated with phenols. So...while some peats are higher in phenol producing material (spagnum) most of the higher PPM malts will to one extent or the other exhibit some iodine and medicine along with smoke.

Maybe that explains why some peaty malts can tastes more medicinal than others. But Lagavulin doesn't taste near as medicinal as Laphroaig (to my palate) yet they aren't that far apart PPM.

I would agree that the times I've had Lagavulin it did not seem as medicinal as Laphroaig. Additionally, Ardbeg has a higher concentration of phenols than Laphroaig, however I find it less medicinal than Laphroaig. I think some of it has to do with what flavors the distilleries concentrate on playing with.
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