Westland New Make Spirits

It’s been awhile since my last post, but since it’s (barely) still my off-season, I haven’t had any exciting running adventures (just plain neighborhood mileage). But this weekend I did get a nice shot from our #OptOutside run on Friday led by the folks from Brooks Sports Headquarters in my neighborhood.

My favorite view from Gasworks Park.

It was a chilly day for Seattle (just above freezing), but we always welcome the sun! The forecast for this week appears to be our regularly scheduled rainy gloom, so this was a nice change of pace.

However, our regularly scheduled rainy gloom IS the perfect backdrop for sipping some delightful drams. Nothing is better on one of those dark and rainy evenings than nursing a whisky in a dry and cozy place while the wind howls.

Tonight we sampled some new make spirits from our favorite local distillery – Westland. I picked these up from the distillery a few weeks ago, but hadn’t cracked them yet. Selling new make spirit (un-aged) is a new offering for them, and it appears to be an in-house exclusive. Selling new make can be typical for new distilleries in order to have any product to sell while the rest is aging, but since Westland has been in production since 2011, that’s not quite the case for them.

While Westland hasn’t sold their new make before now, they do use new make on their tour in an educational capacity to demonstrate the differences in the different cuts of the distillation run: foreshots (heads), spirit cut (heart), and feints (tails). You don’t taste them, but just smell them, and it’s really fascinating how different they are. Only the spirt cut (heart) is used in the final product (and is by far the most pleasant-smelling of the three). I won’t go into more detail about the whole distillation process as I am no expert, but if you ever get a chance at a distillery to smell the three cuts, I highly recommend it!

However, I digress. To the tasting notes!

Westland 5 Malt New Make Spirit

(USA) 40% ABV

Nose: Very fragrant! Cherry and chocolate is very prominent. Some almond as well.

Palate: Plums, cacao nibs, raisins, nuts.

Notes: Smooth sweetness. Cherry chocolate flavor lingers.


Westland Washington New Make Spirit

(USA) 40% ABV

Nose: Cherry and blackberry, but much more subtle and not quite as aggressive as the 5 malt. Hint of chocolate.

Palate: Fresh without being grassy. Bright fruits – evokes summertime.

Notes: Tasting notes suggest peach syrup on the finish and I absolutely taste it. This one is my favorite!


Westland Peated New Make Spirit

(USA) 40% ABV

Nose: Smoky, but it’s not a campfire and it’s not overwhelming. Followed by a touch of the class Westland notes of fruit and chocolate.

Palate: Bit punchier than the others, but not spicy. Puff of smoke, but it’s no Islay. Some fruity sweetness follows, but not incredibly complex.

Notes: Good, and a nice contrast to the other two.


A very enjoyable tasting, and a good way to prepare for work after a long weekend. Stay tuned for whisky adventures in the form of an advent calendar… 🙂


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