Waterford Luna Biodynamic 1.1 Single Malt Whisky Tasting Notes
Waterford Luna Biodynamic 1.1 Single Malt Whisky
Tasting note compiled by Mark McLaughlin (@mark_rye)
Recently we explored Waterford’s ‘The Cuvee’, a marriage of over 31 different farms distillate, quite the feat and an intriguing whisky to review. This time around we are visiting another of Waterford’s projects, a world’s first single malt whisky produced using biodynamic barley. This project uses Olympus barley from 3 farms which has been biodynamically grown. What does that mean you may ponder? And in honesty, I’m not 100% sure, although what I can say is, there’s quite a bit of lunacy surrounding this approach (see what I did there). It’s an incredibly intensive path to follow for a farmer but it results in an ‘uber-organic’ crop which for all purposes is grown in its most natural state, with soils that are alive with nutrients but chemical free. And with Waterford’s pursuit of ultimate flavour through barley alone, this pursuit should produce authentic flavours from the barley never before seen.
If you’re interested in the process, you must visit the Teireoir code for this product, where you will also find that it’s just over 3 years old and has been matured in a variety of ex-bourbon, virgin oak, Bordeaux red wine, port and amorone casks. I’m once again blown away by the detail with which they present their information online, it certain makes considered tastings like this more interesting. On to the whisky….
Sweetness jumps from the glass like vanilla and butterscotch with an aroma like fresh baked pizza dough drizzled with olive oil. It’s hard to comprehend the amount of earthiness present here, lots of dried leaves and almost a touch of minerality. The spirit character is there but it’s more green and barely driven than new make-esque, the alcohol seems balanced.
Palate & Finish
Superbly textural with candied apples, sugary citrus peels and malt spices. There’s berries touching on the side with the stalks and leaves as if you’ve bitten in to them as well, imagine that with a side of vanilla ice-cream. There’s an oily character like linseed or plain candle wax, and dryness that pulls from wood spices to kitchen spice and back to cinnamon coated apple crumble. It finishes well balanced with chocolate covered nuts and just a touch of youth.
As unconvinced as I may have been with ‘The Cuveé’, I have to say this ticks all the boxes for me. It’s balanced with lots of layers, depth and clarity. It’s young, there’s no denying it but it’s incredibly interesting. The Waterford price point is hard to defend for whiskeys of this age, in fact it’s not really worth defending, but I enjoyed this immensely and it’s even harder to put a price on that.
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