Amrut Fusion

Reviewed by: Mooresy

Amrut Fusion
Keen not to be left behind, India’s first single malt was launched in 2004 by Amrut Distilleries and has had a meteoric rise to success in the world market over the last decade. Not trying to imitate Scotch, Indian whisky brings its own special something to the field.

True to its name, this variant is a fusion between the traditional methods of the Scots and the experimental, unshackled approach of Indian distillers. Like a child who has moved out of home in defiance but is still keen to impress the parents, Amrut whiskies are a reminder to the world that independence can lead to innovation in a way only ex-colonial powers demonstrate.

For long-time drinkers of Scotch whisky who are yet to stray into the realm of Australian, Japanese or any other countries, Amrut Fusion will be a surprising drop. On the nose there are hints of spice and sweetness, pushing the mind to thoughts of chai and other familiar Indian flavours.

After a short while, the intensity fades and, I for one, was left with the clearest smell of warm cinnamon doughnuts. On a cold night sitting on a balcony somewhere looking over the ocean, one would feel they were right there at a carnival surrounded by cotton candy, caramel popcorn, and of course the doughnuts.

To taste it gets more traditional, the fruitcake and chocolaty flavours, with the vanilla notes almost inescapable in bourbon-matured drams. The Scottish barley has arguably its biggest influence on the palate through the peat it brings to Fusion, giving a nice smoky kickback to whisky’s origins. Nothing overpowering, just enough to affect the finish and push it out that little bit longer.

There’s a moderate finish, but it’s hard to identify the length because once finished there is a strong desire to just top up the glass a little more and keep the sensation alive. Imagine opening a box of 12 cinnamon doughnuts: you never eat just one.

In the same way that Suntory exhibits qualities archetypal to the qualities of the country in which it was made – precision, exactness, and patience – there is something of the same in Amrut. A busyness and complexity that may make it hard to pin down individual flavours at first but given time all come together and paint a picture everyone can enjoy. There are few whiskies where the phrase “the whole is greater than the sum of the parts” is so applicable.

Amrut has several variants including a peated and a cask strength version of their original single malt, but Fusion is delicious, readily available, affordable, and has a hedonic quality that so far differs from all other Indian whisky (not to mention Scotch whisky) in a charming and moreish way.

★★★

Advertisements

4 comments

  1. The funny thing about Fusion is I’ve had wildly different experiences – one quite good, one ok and one which was verging on awful. As I’m sampling in India, it is difficult to say whether it is the fault of inconsistency in production or abysmal storage conditions (read cooking in crazy hot weather!). The ‘quite good’ experience was together with the men behind the whisky… the ‘ok’ was more recently at a friend’s home… and the ‘awful’ was a blind tasting. I wonder if anyone else has such contradictory experiences?

    Like

    1. Thanks for the comment – particularly because it made me realise I hadn’t uploaded the photo that Moorsey sent through a little while ago and partly because I can relate to your experiences, though not with this particular dram.
      Assuming for a moment that the bottle hadn’t been fried in the heat or labelled incorrectly then maybe the whiskies you had already tried were biasing your palate one way or another.
      It’s funny, I always appreciate a heavily sherried whisky after a bourbon cask. And putting anything after the Laphroaig Quarter Cask is a pointless activity!
      Keep on waffling,
      Nick

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Haha! Happy to help! I completely agree when sampling more than one whisky the order absolutely influences the experience! I recently made the mistake of having a rather deceptive Cask Strength whisky (Chichibu 2009 French Oak Cask) before a more nuanced one (Taketsuru Pure Malt 17 Year) major Oops!

        As for the Fusion, when I first tried – it was after their standard and before Two Continents (which I preferred of the three). The ‘awful’ blind tasting I can’t recall the order but think it was the 2nd after a light whisky… The ‘OK’ was only the Fusion so no other influences. Suspect the really negative experience may have been partly a result of crazy heat or there are rumours that what is sold in India isn’t the ‘good stuff’ vs what is sold outside of the country. Hmm….

        Like

  2. I never tasted “India” when I did the bottle with a full house at a friends 50th.
    We tasted sweet soft honey barley biscuits fruit and soft liquorice running out forever and bing the sweetness was there as well.
    I thought more of Tasmania and felt like I was describing a top notch!
    I have pursued the same experience at home and find it not always so lengthy(different bottle) but I know that my palate believes all the lies it tells me and suspect that a reviewer might not find references to the subcontinent were they blind tasting.
    Easy 4 stars probably 90 out of a hundred.
    Peat smoke first on the nose with a little orange zest. Peat still there on first taste but fades smooth burnt orange barley sugar biscuity vanilla then burnt notes with a fading liquorice undertone blending to honey.
    I’ll leave the cigars and furniture polish to those that …..
    Smoke is much softer on later sip and the mid taste finish gets longer.
    Just a drip of water and the sweetness calls you by name.
    Truly a fine dram.
    Fill your larder before it passes $100 it won’t be long.

    small glasses,
    J.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s