Uncorking the Christmas malt: Jura Prophecy

Jura ProphecyMalt whisky has to be one of the finer pleasures in life. I’m happiest in Scotland, so consider myself fortunate that one if its primary exports does not turn my stomach… quite the opposite, in fact.

I’m partial to most malts, irrespective of source, but my major love has to be the chewable, peaty numbers from Islay.

My ‘King of the Isle’? Lagavulin, although its neighbours near Port Ellen (Ardbeg and Laphroig) are grand, as is Bowmore.

Although I’d planned to acquire a special Ardbeg or Bowmore for the festive season, this year’s addition to the drinks cabinet comes from neighbouring Jura. The Prophecy is a relatively limited release and is, I quote, ‘profoundly peated’.

My palette is not too refined, so I can only sum the Prophecy up thus:

For those accustomed to whisky that assaults the olfactory faculties with a cloud of peat smoke, this may disappoint. The peat is rather restrained on the nose, and there’s more spiciness I guess than anything else with, perhaps appropriately, festive fruits and a bit of salt.

The boggy stuff hits more in the mouth: smoky with a definite citrus tang. Ultimately, it’s complex, yet rounded and refined, and the finish is long… sink-into-a-squishy-armchair long. Wonderfully warm, smoky and lingering, but softer than the more peated Islay malts.

Now for the bad-ish news.

This Jura has a lovely deep, Castrol GTX colour. It’s made from ‘rare aged malts’ and is not chill filtered so holds a bit of a haze. Unfortunately, it’s coloured with caramel, which bugs me a bit. Lagavulin also uses colouring for consistency, in order to meet the expectations of the consumer (or so I was told when I visited the distillery earlier this year).

I can live with it, though. This Jura is a special dram. Although sharing some characteristics of the Origin release, it has more depth and if you’re a bog trotter when it comes to Scotch, it’s definitely worth a snort.

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7 thoughts on “Uncorking the Christmas malt: Jura Prophecy

  1. Sounds lovely…. I wonder if Waitrose carries it….. (doubtful) I have a nice bottle of Jura “Origin” – the unpeated one which was a splendid present from Son Number One.

  2. ‘Origin’ is great stuff… often referred to as the ‘party whisky’ among friends (take from that what you will!). I went to Jura this year but it was ‘silent season’ so could not visit the distillery. Lovely place with some spectacular weather.

  3. I’ve just acquired a couple of Christmas malts. One is a 12 year old Highland Park, an old favourite and staple. The other is the new Bruichladdich ‘Classic Laddie 01’ – a new bottling made only from whisky produced since the distillery re-opened. Very much looking forward to trying that. Have a good and pleasantly inebriated Christmas!

  4. When ever I go walking for more than a weekend I always take a bottle of Whisky, my favorite being a bottle of Jura. I am going to North Wales for a week over Easter to carry on ticking our Nuttall mountains (now up to 367) and thought I’d try a welsh Whisky, I wondered if you had sampled such a tipple or could you recomend any?

    Regards,
    Peter

  5. Peter, I have tried the Penderyn and I have to say I was disappointed. Far too much alcohol on the nose, a kind of harsh sweetness and an unremarkable finish. However, I have read that some bottlings are better than others so I’ll reserve judgement until I’ve tried some more. Thanks for dropping by and your comments…

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