A rich royal heritage, bathed in culture and tradition, Rampur was a princely state that was granted a 15 gun salute by the British during their rule in India. The distillery was built in 1943 and is the oldest and fourth largest in India; built less that a thousand kilometres from the foothills of the Himalayas. The distillery has ever since been producing a wide gamut of spirits for the domestic markets; starting with the production of single malts only by 1990, more so for blending with other local malts. Their first single malt expression hit the markets only by 2016, their first release being the Rampur Single Malt expression.
The distillery uses traditional copper pot stills to distill their whiskies, maturing their produce primarily in american exbourbon barrels, which is also the case with this specific malt. It’s proximity to the himalayas gives the aging whisky the benefit of experiencing extremes from either side of the thermometer; allowing wood and whisky to better mingle, better interact.
Batch: 962, Bottled: 08/18
Eye : Deep gold | Non Chill Filtered, Natural Colouring
Nose : Brown sugar, honey cake and malt, with some fruity sweetness emanating from red stone fruits and raisins coupled with tropical nuances from charred papayas and passion fruit. Fresh wood and burnt leather with a whiff of musk, red wine and green pepper.
Taste : Rounded with a dense mouthfeel, yet light in character. A malty sweetness greets you at first with a cherry like aftertaste followed by slices of charred melons tossed with peaches. Woody and quite earthy, with a subtle sago nuance, a zesty orange lie freshness and a spicy undertone towards the end.
Finish : Medium | Sweet, tropical and earthy
This expression from Rampur offers a different take to the usual standard releases from Amrut or Paul John. The temperate climate and the largely ex-bourbon maturation gives a host of tropical flavours with a oaky, earthy touch to it. The nose is pleasing with sufficient breadth and complexity; the palate however packs a milder punch, starting off dense and then almost suddenly coming to a halt, subtly evolving into a milder, longer set of notes that prance around the taste buds.
For AUD $90, it is a bit steep, but offers something different, tropical and quite hardy. Whether it stands ahead of the other prominant Indian brands is still something I would debate, possibly seeds for next months blog! All in all, a fairly good whisky, a promising future to the distillery and possibly paving the path to many more from the House of Rampur.