I previously tried the Zuidam 3 Years Old Zeer Oude Genever, in which I found the oak played a dominant role. Too dominant, probably. So if the 3-year-old is already infused with oak, what of the 5-year-old?
Like the 3-year-old, the 5-year-old has a base of a triple distilled malt wine, consisting of equal parts corn, rye and malted barley. Part of it is then distilled a fourth time with botanicals such as juniper, licorice root and aniseed, before being filled into a virgin American oak cask.
Zuidam 5 Years Old Zeer Oude Genever (38%)
Nose: Very dominant wood aromas, a tad too much, if you ask me. But that’s what virgin oak will do. Vanilla, fudge and wood shavings. There’s a whisper of aniseed here as well. Taste: Slightly more room for the spirit and botanicals to shine, although the vanilla and fudge are very present still. Very creamy mouthfeel, some pine needles, as well as coriander. Finish: Lingering for a while, pretty warming. Whispers of aniseed.
Despite the strong wood influence, this aged Zuidam Genever has a wonderful balance for the most part, which shines through on the palate especially. This is a drink that will satisfy most whisky drinkers.