The Lakes Distillery is located next to Bassenthwaite Lake, in the Lake District National Park. I was lucky to have been able to visit the distillery in October 2016 while I was down for a break.
If and when you visit you will see that you are greeted at the distillery by magnificent iron gates which have been designed by a local craftsman. These depict malt, barley and some elements of the ingredients used in gin. The distillery itself was a former Victorian cattle farm. Throughout the building you will find quatrefoils (four overlapping circles) with the secular meaning “faith, hope, luck and love” …which I think is rather nice and which they now use as part of their branding.
On the tasting on Monday 12th November we tried the following:
Steel Bonnets 46.6% ABV
The One – Sherry Expression 46.6% ABV
The One – Port Expression 60.2% ABV
First up was Steel Bonnets which is a blend of malt whiskies from England and Scotland. The heart of this contains a single malt from the Lakes Distillery… On the nose, vanilla and a hint of spice mingling with ginger. Sugary sweetness. The palate, quite peppery on the palate, and drying too. Slight hint of vanilla and burnt sugar. A pleasant finish.
Next was The One – Sherry Expression which was finished in first fill PX casks.
Red apples, and a little spice nipping at your senses. Not overly sweet on the nose, yet there was a very light scent of sulphur. The palate gave warming spices, nutmeg and dark fruit, slight waxy mouthfeel. Strong black tea.
Last up was The One – Port Expression (prototype) which is due for release Spring 2019. We were treated to the sample at cask strength, it will be bottled at 46.6% ABV when released. this was taking a little while to open, the nose was fruity notes and quite malty… a slight hint of leather and woody scent coming through. The palate had quite a robust mouthfeel, dark chocolate and slightly nutty taste. Dark sugar and a kick of spice… burnt caramel too.
It was lovely to try them all, aI had had a sip of the Steel Bonnets at the airport last month. Not a bad dram at all…will probably need to revisit the Port Cask prototype again.
Thanks for the opportunity of trying these Steve and the Lakes Distillery.