By Debbie Shocair
After my first surprising and very pleasant foray into Amrut’s expressions, I was looking forward to something special in the Amrut Fusion Single Malt. Certainly I am aware of all the wonderful things said about it elsewhere, but much like movie reviews, I only take such comments as whispers. I prefer to find out for myself.
By now, I’m sure you know I love an interesting whisky, and I am happy to say that this Indian Single Malt was all about “interesting.” Beautifully interesting. This “fusion” begins with 25% cask strength peated single malt and 75% cask strength (unpeated) single malt from Amrut. Some have been confused by the fact that one malt is Scottish and the other Indian, but they were both distilled in India, hence the single malt designation.
The two are married and matured for a further 6-9 months in used bourbon barrels at the salubrious climate in Bangalore (better known as an Indian tech industry center) that seems to draw a particular richness and complexity into the contents. The angel’s share may be as much as 15%, and yes, it’s a NAS product. But, what matters most is what’s in the bottle, which comes at a hefty 100 proof.
On the nose, this fusion was redolent with big, bold candied fruits—think plums, fruitcake, raisins—as well as molasses and candied orange peel. It packed far more into the initial nosing than I had expected and had my attention right away.
Breaking it with a ½ teaspoon of water brought the peat out of hiding, along with lower notes of honey and orange.
The mouthfeel on this burly creature was surprisingly gentle for 100 proof, but unusual in that it was at the front of the palate and the front of the gums.
As for the finish, this is where “interesting” took the turnoff to “wow.” Cascades of flavors evolved in the very long finish. What began as fruity, changed to peaty, then to very peaty before falling away to honeyed bread. That’s a thing, right? Honeyed bread?
If you’re any fan of peated whisky, this is a must-try. If you’re a fan of Amrut, this is a must-try. If you love whisky… yeah, you get it.
At around $70, it’s a bargain give what it delivers, and a great gift idea, too, for that whisky lover who hasn’t yet delved into the exotic, quality lines from India.