The Isle of Jura sits off the West coast of Scotland, just North of that most famous of whisky Islands, Islay. It has a single distillery of the same name. The Jura distillery was originally built in 1810. However, the distillery that stands today is a completely new one built in 1963 – 60 years after demolition of the original! Of interest is that the distinctive shape of the bottle has remained in use since the distillery first opened in the 19th century. Being an island whisky, Jura has ‘the flavour of the sea’. This briny, iodine-y undertone is common to most island whiskies and comes from the casks being aged in the Scottish sea air. Influences such as salt from the surf spray and iodine from sea-weed on the beaches seeps through the wood and into the whisky over the long years it sits waiting to be released. And so for this month, the Jura Elixir
Jura classic single malt is a 10 year old, aged in American Oak barrels. The next step up in the Jura range is the Superstition, which has the same oak profile, is aged 12 years, but has some peated spirit. The Jura Elixir is new to the fold. It is the same age as the Superstition, but loses the peat, and has some aging in sherry butts. This sherry influence makes it an interesting extension to the Jura whisky range.
The nose on the Jura Elixir is subdued at first with some light rich fruit characteristics and spices. The whisky hits the lips with a full flavoured richness, that intensifies and morphs into an intense treacle, maple syrup filled with spices, like tamarind, cinnamon and cloves. The sea spray comes through to cleanse this almost overwhelming flavour explosion, leaving a gentle astringency drying the pallet to prepare it for the next taste.