"This mix-up of 8 different cask feels just like that, a mix-up. Missing focuss, or some kind of thread towards a style, this is not the best example of Kavalan, I suppose"
(Photo from Whiskybase)
Named after the owners, which is the King Car (“golden car”) Group, this is said to represent the whole range of whiskies from the Distillery. My first experience with this distillery that has risen to stardom after several members of the Solist series were glorified by Jim Murray, the Malt Maniacs and many others. I suppose King Car Conductor could be a good start to get acquainted with their whisky style, however, their standard range has not acclaimed fame as the single cask versions from the Solist series. Anyway, to begin with, I find it a stylish bottle, modern and definitely 21st century-proof. Let’s start with trying the contents.
It is light, with mostly hints of vanilla at first followed by some herbal notes and subtle fruity features. Especially spiced apples spring to mind. When the initial subtlety has settled, the woody spices become increasingly apparent in companion of a clear acidity, in particular citrus. I might even detect a light smokiness is present. A fairly simple, cask driven nose.
Very dry at first, before herbal notes, citrus, japanese nut mix, a light smokiness, and some further spices make their appearance. I think I recognize chili, sambal, and other spices often associated with food from the Far East. Some honey, really lots of vanilla, lychees, and sushi (never found that in a whisky). The oak becomes overly present after a while with lots of vanilla, ginger and oranges. I can’t find any sherry cask influence though. All seems a bit unbalanced with the casks doing much of the talking.
This whisky speaks definitely a different language compared to scotch, with some beautiful notes. However, the maturation in so many casks has made it, IMHO, slightly messy and unbalanced, meaning too wood-driven. Based on the raging reviews and collected prizes for other expression, I don not think this is really a showcase of their capabilities.
A sample of this was purchased from
• these are my personal views, so do not take them too seriously… nothing beats tasting these for yourself •