Whisky Review – Hammerhead 1989 Vintage

After a tour through Japan and a few Japanese whiskies it’s time to continue our world whisky tour and move on to Europe. Today –  the Hammerhead 1989 Vintage which was one of the drams in the freestyle blind tasting contest I mentioned in my last whisky review.

This is not your average whisky – It was made in Pradlo distillery located in Czechoslovakia and was distilled shortly before the Czechoslovakian Velvet Revolution and the fall of Berlin wall. Amazing to discover where whisky is produced…

The Hammerhead is truly a Czech whisky – Czech barley, Czech oak wood barrels and water from the Bohemia region. The malted barley was milled using a hammer mill, thus the name Hammer Head.

In the freestyle blind tasting I even didn’t try and guess a specific expression but I did go for Japanese whisky (It surely didn’t taste like Scotch for me), 15 years old and ABV of 46%. I was close enough on the age and in the fact it’s not Scotch 🙂

Hammerhead 1989 Vintage (40.7% ABV, £31)

Hammer Head 1989Nose: Sweet and Floral. Really a perfume, some background acetic notes and pine needles (although this is not Rye whisky), vanilla, nuts – really an interesting nose.

Palate: Starts with acetic/rubber notes but it’s layered with sweet syrup which takes the lead, spicy – aniseed, cinnamon.

Finish: Spicy but more peppery. some aftermath of cigarette. the residues in the glass smells sweet and herbal.

Conclusion: It was my favorite in the blind tasting (beating 2nd place in a very close battle) – truly a gem from a world that doesn’t exist nowadays.


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