isle of jura 16 scotch whiskyAuthor Mack McConnell is a contributing writer for Cocktail Enthusiast. He also runs a Scotch of the Month Club.

I recently had the opportunity to taste Isle of Jura 16 Year Old, and I quite liked it. It’s a  great mixture of fruity and earthy notes with a distinct and deep nose. And while the whisky itself is definitely interesting, I was perhaps even more fascinated by where this stuff comes from.

The Jura Distillery is found on the small island of Jura, between Islay and Campbeltown, off the south-western coast of Scotland. And it’s known for handful of interesting facts —

– The island only contains about 200 people, but more than 5,000 deer
– The island has just one road, one pub and of course the distillery (but, really, what more could you need?)
– It’s the former home of George Orwell, and it’s apparently where he wrote 1984

If you get an opportunity to visit the distillery, don’t pass it up. Visitors to the distillery are given one free dram every month at the Jura pub for the rest of their lives. Now, if that’s not reason enough to travel, I don’t know what is.

Despite there not being much on the little island, these guys know how to make some quality whisky. Jura 16 recently won Gold Best in Class at the 2010 International Wine and Spirits Competition. And, if it means anything, I’ve become quite a big fan. Anyway, let’s take this one for a spin.

Isle of Jura 16 Year-Old Tasting Notes

Nose: Great fruit notes, particularly dried fruits and a strong berry presence. There’s also some vegetal grass, maple syrup and smooth oak.

Taste: Dark fruit – dates and raisins – plus some honey and cream. Light spice, including peppercorn, and some sweet maple syrup. Add a bit of water to your glass and you’ll find more of those honey and cream flavors.

Body: Medium-bodied.

Finish: More of the warm, maple syrup sweetness, plus a strong fruit presence and a bit of lingering spice.

If you like that, be sure to try the Isle of Jura 21 Year Old as well. It’s a great dram with a sherry finish.

– 43% Alcohol by Volume
– $60

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