André F Spirits

Being a whisky enthusiast is one thing, but to actually distill your own spirit and maturing whisky is of course a completely different thing. Then you are really working in a different league, namely the craft!
But… We as Dutch Whisky Brothers can only encourage this ambition. Of course we also like to follow these ambitions and take them along in our own whisky journey.

That is how we came into contact with André Ferreira from Portugal. Just like us, André is an enthusiast. However, he was able to realize his ambition and, together with a good friend, distilled and then matured his own spirit. Finally, André also released his own bottling.
But before we reveal our discovery with his bottling, let’s take a look back at the process leading up to it.

André’s good friend is a local small-scale farmer and also a lover and connoisseur of spirits. His friend is in fact a grandson of a former brandy distiller and winemaker. Never wrong to have a friend like that! André thought so too 😉.
Together they decided to distill their own spirit according to their ancestors’ preconditions. Namely to produce only for own consumption and close friends. In 2017 it was decided to produce cask strength whisky, rum and brandy.
The distillate was produced in 100% double distilled pot still. A mix of barley from “Malsters” from Castleford has been used. The batter contained Golden Promis and a medium peated malt, with a final result of 10 PPM (lightly peated). The fermentation process has been deliberately long, 10 days, to get a full bodied spirit.

After distillation, maturation took place in First Fill Sherry casks of 32 and 65 liters from the 1980s. The warm climate in Portugal provided a quick maturation in the barrels. We also see this in other countries, like Israel (M&H) and Taiwan (Kavalan), so the the whiskey cannot become super old. Otherwise we would end up with either nothing left in the barrels or very astringent too woody whisky.

We finally received 3 (1 spirits and 2 whisky’s) samples from André. Of course we will share our discovery with you, so here it is!

New Make 2yo – First Fill Oloroso @ 56.8% ABV
  • Nose: It almost looks like a rye mash that has been used. This because of the spicy and menthol notes. Definitely Oloroso notes, very heavy (not crazy with Cask Strength), but the alcohol is not too strong and that is remarkable for 2 years!
  • Palate: Syrupy, nice and thick. Again spicy, almost cough syrup-like. Some wood influences, but also dried dark red fruits.
  • Finish: Spicy aftertaste with raisins soaked in brandy (“Boerenjongens” known among the Dutch).

This is a very promising spirit for a 2 year old in our opinion. It could be a little more balanced. Of course you can play with some water(drops) and time. But the real balance will come with more maturation.

3yo – First Fill PX @ 57.3% ABV
  • Nose: Sweet, red fruit. Slightly spicy and again that menthol. After some time in the glass, it really gets softer and sweeter.
  • Palate: Much sharper and spicy compared to the 2yo Oloroso. Raisins, spices, slightly sweet. This develops over time into a more creamy whisky with red fruits. Almost towards whipped cream with strawberries and red berries.
  • Finish: A spicy medium aftertaste with sweet red fruit.

Special how this 3yo became so much sweeter, softer and creamier after some time in the glass. This despite the fact that it was sharper and spicier in the beginning compared to the 2yo Oloroso.

André Cask 5yo – Small Pot Still First Fill Sherry @ 49.5% ABV
  • Nose: Smells like a Christmas cake! That makes us happy 😊. Sweet and dark red fruit such as blackberries and plums.
  • Palate: Nice full sherry flavours. Dark dried fruit. Those plums again, but now also towards figs. Light spices, ginger biscuit, tobacco and something earthy.
  • Finish: Soft and medium on the finish with light spices and dried currants.

We have not officially assessed these samples according to our system. The 2yo and 3yo really need some time to mature and become more balanced. The 5yo, on the other hand, is really a full-fledged whisky. This one has interesting and beautiful flavors in it. Given the small craft story, the ambition and the final bottling, we would certainly appreciate it with:

Waardering: 3.5 uit 5.

Unfortunately production has stopped, but… we have heard that there are ideas for a future bottling….

We want to thank André so much for his ambition, project and especially the fact that he took us into this!
Our own whisky journey has been greatly enriched by this!

Slàinte 🥃

Dutch Whisky Brothers

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