Drink Magazine

Whisky Review – Mackmyra Swedish Whisky, The 1st Edition

By Boozedancing @boozedancing

Whisky Review – Mackmyra Swedish Whisky, The 1st EditionIf you’d have asked me 15 years ago to make a list of the first five things that come to mind when someone mentions Sweden, here’s what I would have said:

  1. Bjorn Borg
  2. Ikea
  3. Volvo
  4. Saab
  5. Abba

If you would have asked me just 5 years ago, this Swedish Supercar would have come to mind…

It turns out that 13 years ago, eight friends decided to start a whisky distillery while on a ski vacation together. Here is their story courtesy of Mackmyra’s website:

Perhaps it sounds too simple, but it all started with a skiing trip. Eight friends met up at a mountain lodge in the spring of 1998. Each had taken along a bottle of malt whisky for the host; the topic of conversation was obvious. How do you make whisky? And why isn’t there a Swedish one? The question led us to start exploring the possibilities of making our own Swedish whisky…

At our distillery at Mackmyra Bruk, we have pursued our dreams and created the Swedish whisky. We make it our own way, using local ingredients and no additives, and we are constantly striving to evolve. The result has put Sweden on the international whisky map.

Let’s get on with the review…

  • Appearance: Pale gold. Thin, fast moving streaks form after giving it a swirl.
  • Aroma: Plums. Pears. Vanilla. Very mild smokiness. Juniper. Hints of eucalyptus and other botanicals. Adding water brings out some anise. Sort of a Whisky/Silver Tequila/London Dry Gin mash-up on the nose.
  • Taste: Slightly oily mouthfeel. Very mild smokiness. The first sip tingles the tip of your tongue with mild pepperiness. Very light and somewhat fruity as well. There is very little alcohol sting when you drink it at full strength. The black pepper spiciness continues to build (though it’s never overbearing), and leads to a dry, medium finish. Adding water brings out more of the fruitiness.
  • ABV: 46.1%

I sampled this whisky for the first time about two weeks ago with the rest of the “It’s just the booze dancing…” crew. From what I remember, we had some fairly wide ranging opinions about this whisky. The ROK and I really enjoyed it, The Wookie thought it was quite odd and said that he would put it a notch or two above the Rogue Dead Guy Whisky (this prompted me to send the following Tweet: “#Whiskey nosing note: #Rogue Dead Guy Whisky smells like week old festering messy diapers. 7 years of kids diapers has taught me this.” And this is why you shouldn’t drink and Tweet!), and Limpd was sort of on the fence about it. I’m sure they will eventually chime in with their remarks.

I really enjoyed the Mackmyra 1st Edition. While it’s not as multi-dimensional as most of the older whiskies that are available on the market, I really enjoyed how straightforward and easy drinking it truly is. Fresh and vibrant are two words that immediately come to mind. While it’s perfectly drinkable right out of the bottle, I recommend adding a bit of water since that really helps to tone down the pepper and enhance the fruitiness. I’m curious to see what this would taste like if it was aged a bit longer. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see if their other expressions make it to the US.

Thank you to Jonathan Luks for sending us this very generous sample, and to Angela D’Orazio, Mackmyra’s Master Blender, for sharing her thoughts about this whisky with us on Twitter.

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