It’s always an uncomfortable moment, full of fear and loathing when a fellow enthusiast reaches into their pouch announcing that they have something for me. Normally this means something witty from the isle off Islay, or a progressive Hebridean distillery and prompts my standard oh how thoughtful reaction. In reality my mind is immediately considering if this liquid will remove the dead flies from the bonnet of my car.
In this example the giver was Tom, who being gracious as he is, named his website TomsWhiskyReviews. Pleasantries aside, he reaches into his satchel to whip out a member of the axis of evil or wannabe. That’s what I expect from a man that bathes in Jura, worships all whiskies and tries to be positive even when faced with a sherry monster. Rummaging in his sack he returns to state that I’ve got a dick for you – tumble weed passes by whilst I regain my composure – you’ve got a what? A DYC he restates with a slight change in pronunciation, something from Spain that may be of interest, holding out the generous sample. Ok, perhaps not the best name for a distillery particularly if it lacks balls, but at least we’ll learn about another possible European destination for whisky after reviewing the Dutch Zuidam Millstone effort.
In reality I think it is bloody marvellous that our European neighbours are producing and enjoying whisky. Come hard-brexit (whatever that is, apparently brexit means brexit, it’s a southern thing), borders will close and any whisky within Scotland will remain ours. First dibs on Tormore for me thanks. The future is unclear but there will always be taxation, marketing waffle and artificial colouring. These are the unwritten rules of whisky.
DYC actually means Destilerias y Crianza del whisky, with the distillery being established in 1959 just to the north of Madrid. It grew to become a sizeable enterprise during its early years as the population enjoyed a dram, being capable of producing tens of millions of litres. Everything is done on site including maturation and bottling with Scottish styled pot stills and double distillation. In reality our Spanish chums felt they had enough DYC to satisfy demand and production in reality is much lower and there are now 2 separate sites that now produce spirit. The Destilerias company was swallowed up by Beam Suntory, who has plans to utilise existing distribution networks to deliver DYC to the UK and build upon its popularity in Spain.
Admittedly the general affordability of DYC plays into its popularity alongside a core range that gives us a blended whisky at the bottom, the age statements of 5 and 8 kick in before the top end single malt aged for at least a decade. In-between all of this is a No Age Statement Pure Malt with the emphasis on being a mixer. Tom has graced us here with the 10 year old, so we’re potentially this is the money shot, the weapon of mass destruction, the big one and well no more innuendo.
Colour: golden barley
Nose: it’s exceptionally light and floral. A dose of golden syrup and vanilla with honey. Apples, a raw filo pastry and in the background orange zest.
Taste: odd in some respects as initially its watery then the sugars power through leading to a sustained orange candy finish. Almost in reverse. Returning there is caramel and a slight bitterness vanilla from the wood. More syrup and a little melon, pineapple and grapefruit making this ultimately very interesting.
Overall: a perfectly pleasant nose and a reasonable palate. It’s just different from what I’ve experienced from Scotland. You can see the appeal of this whisky in a hot climate and while it may lack depth and definition to some, I actually quite respect its differences. It’s almost devoid of robust wood flavours that dominate many young Scottish whiskies and sitting on the summer porch, I’d quite easily reach for a dram of this or as a mixer.