You may file Chocolate Malt Whisper, a recent release from Woodford Reserve’s Distillery Series, under the category of “happy accident.” The distillate used in the limited edition release was produced immediately after their 2019 Master’s Collection Chocolate Malted Rye, with the result that some of the latter’s chocolate notes carried over to the former.
The spirit pours a rich, warm amber and has bakery aromas of vanilla, toffee, fresh bread and chocolate chunk cookies right out of the oven. It proves hot on the palate and starts with notes of rich, candied fruit that’s followed by spicy cereal notes that give way to fudgy chocolate and caramel.
Toward the back we’re hit by an oaky spice surge that ends with what I can only describe as whole wheat cookies with dark chocolate chunks: essentially, the fusion of spicy grain and fudgy dark chocolate that typifies the entire experience. Those dark chocolate flavors are only deepened as its long, drawn-out finish continues, until we’re left with a final flavor of dark chocolate brownie batter with nuts.
For obvious reasons, Woodford Reserve would never label something a “chocolate lover’s whiskey,” but that’s essentially what Chocolate Malt Whisper is—in addition to being a whiskey lover’s whiskey. It’s those twin notes of spicy cereal and fudgy dark chocolate that define the experience and turn it into something really exceptional.