St. George’s distillery released the first legal English whisky in over a century in December 2009. Their single malt whiskies are released under The English Whisky Co., and each is given a chronological chapter number, although chapters 1-4 were not technically whiskies, not having been aged for the required minimum of 3 years.
The distillery, founded by James and Andrew Nelstrop, is situated near the Norfolk town of Thetford and began distilling on 12th December 2006. Impressively, The English Whisky Co. source their barley, yeast and water (the three ingredients needed for whisky production) from within England and as local to the distillery as possible, making this a truly English spirit.
The distillery manager David Fitt, who used to work for Greene King, spent four valuable months working alongside Iain Henderson, formerly of Laphroaig, learning his new trade and adapting from his brewing background before assuming his current role. In a short amount of time St. George’s has produced a range of whiskies: peated and unpeated; bourbon matured and sherry matured--Chapter 7 even had a rum finish. They have also branched out into cream liqueurs and fortified wine.
Limited to just 3600 bottles, the 11yo from the English Whisky co. is batch made up of 9 casks; 8 un-peated and 1 peated. This gives just the tiniest tickle of smoke on the back of the tongue. Bottled at 46% with natural colour and with out chill-filtration, this is an oily, mouth coated of a whisky perfect for sipping on a summers night.
Nose: Heaps of apple, fresh and over ripe, almost whisky meets Calvados. Woody spice with berry jam and a hint of banana bread.
Palate: Cooked cherry and baking spice, with dry oak and spiced orchard fruit.
Finish: Oily malt and dry pepper spice, with candied ginger and pineapple.