Whisky by Flavour - Mouthfeel - Drying
The mouthfeel of a whisky is one of the first parts of the tasting process which we identify, our palate is secondary, to our nose, in the strength of connection to our brains for identifying aromas and flavours. The taste receptors (taste buds) link to the olfactory senses in our brain to identify flavours we have encountered before, and this is where mouthfeel comes into play, there are some differences in textures created in the whisky which give different impressions while in our mouths, however, these also react with the esters, distillation process and alcohol to water ratio. Each of these creates combinations between textures and flavours. Therefore, mouthfeel can be classed as a flavour because it enhances and develops flavours from other aspects of production whilst creating impressions in the olfactory senses in our brains.
A drying mouthfeel is often the result of the maturation influence. There are two key oak species used for whisky casks, American Oak and European Oak, European oak has a far greater level of tannin in the wood, and this is imparted into the whisky during maturation. As a flavour you’ll notice spice, especially on the finish, it can also come across as bitter and leave the coating texture on the palate. The spiced flavours have become synonymous with Sherry cask whisky and some dried fruit flavours do come from this previous fill but the spice and mouth coating effect is a result of the European Oak which is traditionally used for Sherry as it’s produced in Jerez in Spain.
Enjoyed this flavour? The following whiskies all share this flavour profile.....