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Friday, November 21, 2014

SIA Blended Scotch Whisky

Those who know me well know I really love smoky peaty scotch. Scotch from Islay is my favorite. Problem is, there’s a large market out there that’s scared of scotch because they think all scotch is smoky, peaty, heavy, and let’s be honest, a lot of people don’t like the taste of alcohol. It’s considered “the burn” or “liquid heat” going down. It takes a while for someone’s palate to be able to appreciate the tastes of some of the stronger spirits. So when a scotch enthusiast named Carin Luna-Ostaseski decided to bring another scotch into the market, she decided to make something that can bridge that gap. Make a scotch that is “approachable, refined and refreshingly modern.” She funded her idea through Kickstarter and after blind tastings of hundreds of different single malts and lots of research in distillery methods, she has created SIA. Winner of the Double Gold at SFWSC, 2014, this is a scotch that current scotch drinkers would enjoy yet approachable enough for the scotch newbie.

Carin was gracious enough to send me a sample and I informed her I would be happy to try it but know since this is my hobby, I give my honest opinion of anything I try, good or bad. So what do I think of SIA after trying it? I tried it neat and then with a branch (splash of water to open it up) so I could fully evaluate the spirit on its own. I find it to be a very approachable scotch, especially with the sweeter notes I could detect near the finish. I like my peaty, smoky scotches the most but SIA was a lovely sipper that really brought the best out of each region. It has just enough “Islay” in there to showcase the flavors I, and other serious scotch drinkers, like to taste while balanced with the smoother, more approachable flavors of the Highlands and Speyside.

The color is of golden honey, the nose is citrus and spice and the taste is extremely smooth with vanilla, a hint of smoke and finishes lightly sweet giving hints of crème brûlée, hazelnut and toffee.

In summary, SIA is a fantastic scotch that you should definitely try if you’ve been turned off by scotch in the past or if you love scotch and would like to find a nice relaxing sipper. If you're trying to find where you can purchase a bottle, check out this page on where you can purchase in stores or have shipped from online.

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