Nomad Outland Whisky ($44): There are so many different styles of Whisky coming from a range of countries. Some stylistic choices are common in more than one region, others not so much. One production choice I’m often inclined towards is Whisky that is finished in a 2nd set of casks that once contained another spirit, or a wine. Here’s a new one from Spanish producer González Byass that fits into that category.This Speyside Whisky is blended from more than 30 malt and grain Whisky sources. Primary aging varies from 5 to 8 years for each Whiskey. After blending it spends another 3 years in butts that had previously been soaked in Olorosso Brandy. The Whisky is then shipped to Jerez where it ages an additional 12 months in Casks that previously contained Pedro Ximénez. In a very real sense this is the Whisky equivalent of the nature or nurture question. In tasting Nomad it’s pretty clear to me that both environments (Scotland and Spain) played significant roles in its development and style.
Dates and hints of brown sugar peek out from the nose here. The palate shows off brioche, rum raisin, pecans, and wisps of dark chocolate. Mesquite honey, dried mission figs, and a dusting of cocoa are evident on the finish. The depth, persistence and elegance of this Whisky are really impressive for the price-point. It has the complexity and flavors of some whiskies nearly twice its price.
González Byass has a long tradition in Spain of producing quality wine, spirits, oil, and vinegar. Nomad Outland Whisky is a worthwhile addition to that respected portfolio. If you’re drinking things like The Balvenie 14 Year Caribbean Cask or Glenlivet 15, give Nomad a try, you’re likely to be pleased.