First off, I should say that I am NOT a scotch guy. I’m a bourbon guy, through and through to my bones. Over my plentiful years I have tried myriad single-malt, high-quality scotches and they’ve never captured my palette or imagination. My working assumption is that I have something (undoubtedly irrational) against filtering my liquor through burnt vegetation – in the case of scotch, peat. I’m also not a fan of JD – in that case, sugar maple.
It’s a twelve-year-old, single-malt scotch. Of those twelve years, it spends the first ten aging inside previously-used bourbon barrels that they apparently purchase and then loan to an unnamed bourbon producer in the US – who presumably leverages them for 4-6 years and then ships ’em out. You can only use a bourbon barrel once for making bourbon. The Lasanta scotch is then decanted out of these bourbon barrels and put into previously-used sherry casks for a final two years of aging. How’s that for different!
Just to put this out of the way quickly, if you offered me a twelve year old bourbon that had been aged with sherry or cherries or berries or whatever – I’d probably turn my nose up at you ‘cuz I’m a bourbon snob. So if you’re a scotch aficionado and you think this whole idea is moronic, I completely hear you! However, since I am not a scotch aficionado, I’m really digging this stuff! It has a very bourbon-y finish. A complex (to say the least) nose, and the sherry part of it does not overwhelm. The burnt peat is still in there – for sure. It’s a scotch – without doubt – but it’s a scotch mellowed by the bourbon barrel, and spiced-up by the sherry cask residues. If you’re a bourbon nut, you should try this out. It’s not trivial to find, unfortunately, but it is out there!