Price: £35.99 (UK)
Mackmyra is a whisky distillery located in Sweden. It is the brainchild of eight friends who, tucked away in a mountain lodge in the spring of 1998, wondered why there was no Swedish whisky in the vast ocean of whisky in the world. Mackmyra was born a year later in 1999 and the first drops of their Swedish whisky were distilled on 18 December 1999. Mackmyra now produce a range of interesting, refreshingly different and, I’ll admit, pretty darn exciting expressions that make use of Swedish oak (which is said to infuse whisky with a fiery spiciness) and a signature “Mackmyra smoke” (peat flavoured with fresh juniper twigs) to produce whisky that is not only distinctly Swedish but unmistakably Mackmyra.
Mackmyra Brukswhisky is made from whisky that is matured in bourbon casks, sherry casks and Swedish oak casks, and it is given a hint of juniper smoke with the addition of Mackmyra’s smoky variety of whisky. This certainly sounds very innovative and creative, because the vast majority of whisky tends to be matured in bourbon casks and/or sherry casks. Mackmyra appear to be pushing the boundaries in this case and creating a whisky that is truly distinctive by infusing it with flavours from Swedish oak and juniper smoke. I am getting thirty just thinking about it!
The bouquet is fresh, light and crisp with intriguing notes that immediately astound – creamy vanilla, citrus, orange peel, manuka honey, fragrant flowers, pot pouri, sweet tree sap, warm baklava with nuts and honey, raspberry and milk bottle lollies, perfumed soaps, mild licorice, incense and hints of smoke. On the palate the whisky is extraordinarily balanced and offers notes of cooked pear, fresh orange, honey, hard lollies (Berwick cockles, licorice candy and minties come to mind), dark chocolate, fragrant wood, and all the while an underlying heat radiates rigid flecks of spice from the palate in the form of cinnamon, star anise, fiery peppermint and fisherman’s friends. The finish is refreshing and warming with spices and the continuing burn of peppermint/fisherman’s friends, as undertones of sweet wine intermingle with raisin, apricot custard Danish pastry, oak notes and orange rind.
Overall, Mackmyra Brukswhisky is a soft, crisp, fresh and super smooth whisky with superbly integrated yet complex flavours. Its flavours are superbly balanced and project a distinct style that is Mackmyra, which not only makes it extremely drinkable but a refreshing change for those looking to broaden their whisky horizons and explore not only Mackmyra’s distillate, Swedish oak or juniper smoke but also some masterful blending by the Mackmyra team led by Angela D’Orazio. She should also be pleased to know that my Dad, a beginner whisky drinker who does not much enjoy spirits neat, sipped a dram of Mackmyra Brukswhisky with delight while he made a big pot of pasta sauce – he said it is the first whisky he has enjoyed. My continuing efforts to convert yet another person into a whisky drinker may just have succeeded, thanks to Mackmyra! Tack så mycket.