An Invitation to Unique Locations
Destination is a new Swedish Single Malt from Mackmyra that has been matured in a combination of port and American oak casks.
The Mackmyra project started in 1998 when a group of friends set out to establish the country’s first whisky distillery. The first drops were distilled in 1999 and by 2011, the business had moved to a new, purpose-built, gravity-fed distillery.
Mackmyra have released some very interesting projects over the years with the now defunct Seasons range showcasing an array of weird and wonderful cask maturation styles. This latest release, however, celebrates the spread of the Mackmyra mini-empire across various intriguing locations. Unlike Scotch whisky, there’s no restrictions on the location of their maturing stocks. In other words, Swedish whisky doesn’t have to complete its maturation in Sweden.
Within an impressive portfolio of whisky premises, Mackmyra’s Whisky Village is the base of operations. It’s here that the Gravity Distillery resides, along with a restaurant and forest-based warehouse. Elsewhere, the Swedish whisky matures in some outlandish locations, each having its own unique effect on the aging spirit.
The Bödas Mine
Within a shallow, 50 metre shaft, at the Bödas ore mine, lies perhaps Mackmyra’s most renowned warehouse facility. Cool and damp, the mine made the perfect location for the maturation of their Swedish Single Malt.
The highest whisky warehouse in Europe! This maturation facility perches at the top of the popular Lofsdalen Ski Resort. There you will find the Mackmyra Skybar with a magnificent 360 degree view over the Sonfjället National Park. The Skybar sports the largest selection of Mackmyra whisky while the cellar contains around 400 casks under private ownership. Such an unusual location has an effect on the style of the whisky produced, resulting in a higher alcohol percentage and smaller quantity of whisky due to the altitude and cold, dry, mountain air.
The Scotch Whisky Association would have a seizure if a Scottish Distiller attempted to mature their spirit on a barge floating on the River Seine in Paris. Mackmyra has no such issues, however. Permanently docked in Issy-Les-Molineaux, near Paris, the barge is owned by Maison Ferrand and houses casks of their Plantation Rum and Ferrand Cognac. Now, it also stores around 400 casks of Mackmyra whisky. The movement of the river impacts the spirit in the cask and increases the interaction between spirit and oak. The site’s varying humidity and temperature will also have an effect on the character of the malt.
*Full disclosure: the whisky featured in this article was sent to me free of charge. As always, I will strive to give an honest opinion on the quality of the dram and the value for money it represents.
Mackmyra’s Destination single malt is, apparently, an invitation to whisky lovers and Mackmyra followers, wherever they may be, to come and explore the various sites used by the distillery. It’s bottled at 48.7% and retails for around £70.
Smell: Rich and spicy. Nutty. Some dried fruits. Berries. Gingerbread. Cinnamon. Brown sugar. Honeycomb and chocolate – Crunchie bars! Orange liqueur. There’s also a touch of malt in there, under the cask. Baked apples. Some wood resin. Even a wee touch of lemony freshness with some gristy cereals.
Taste: Red apples. Cranberry. Nutmeg and clove. Woody. Raisins and sultanas. Oak. Charcoal. Toffee and butterscotch. Vanilla fudge. Oak char note on the finish.
Thoughts: It’s got a great nose. Enticing and evocative with a nice combination of wintery spices and summer fruits. The whole experience feels bigger than previous releases – in several ways. The abv is higher than normal, at 48.7% and it feels significantly weightier on the palate. Where, in the past, Mackmyra have tended to be quite careful with the use of big, active casks, the oak has had a bigger impact with the port particularly prominent. Feels like a new chapter for Mackmyra and I’m totally here for it.
Price: A little more expensive than the Seasons range but only a wee bit. Won’t be for everyone at £70 but I think the quality of the dram can carry the price. A bigger, bolder Mackmyra.
For more on Mackmyra visit https://mackmyra.co.uk/