Here we are with yet another Mackmyra review and it seems that we should probably just have a “Mack of the Month” feature. For this post we are looking at the new Efva release. This expression comes from their Moment Range – the more exclusive releases which focus on even more rare and unusual casks than their Seasonal Range. The name comes from Efva Attling, a Swedish jewellery designer, who met with Mackmyra’s Angela D’Orazio at the distillery’s Bodas mines and picked out 19 separate casks – mainly Olorosso, American Oak and ex-bourbon barrels [ed: all familiar territory so far!] which have been saturated in Swedish birch tree sap wine [ed: and there it is!] and have even had an extra finish in cherry wine to pronounce the sweet notes. With those new original twists to encounter, they have a limited release of 4,111 bottles of Efva at the house favourite strength of 46.3% ABV.
Very appley. A sharp apple too, rather than sweet. Almost rhubarb-like? Other fruits jump out too – but again not too sweet – brings to mind orange pith. There’s a slight acetone / young bourbon note there too – that familiar corn syrupy bourbon vanilla oak. They are all light and delicate together with a warming ginger nut biscuit type warmth and spice.
Ooooh, there’s a thicker body to this than I was anticipating from the nose. A good whoosh of oak and nuts rolls across the tongue and fills the mouth with spice. That acetone note has become a really cleansing minty/eucalyptus note that pierces through the thick fruit and syrupy flavours.
As the apple, nuts and syrup flavours slope off into the tasting note distance, the ginger biscuit note from the nose just carries on through and leaves a fresh stem ginger vibrancy behind.
Well, the Swedish birch tree sap wine casks is the clear wild card in this whisky’s make-up and it seems to have added a depth and power to the Mackmyra signature apple note from the spirit that I’ve not come across before and have happily enjoyed. As mentioned above, I’ve loved tasting my way through the Mackmyra back catalogue and this offers yet another variant and probably another world first in a single malt’s maturation. A very interesting malt and something that malt enthusiasts should be keen to seek out in their search for something new. A very interesting dram. I’ve had a single measure of it via the sample shown above and just from that amount have managed to gather so much from it. It is bursting with flavours albeit I think that large measure of this may offer more but maybe even too much – I don’t think that I could have a few of these in a row. Quite thick and hearty but, on the flip side, the £95 or so that you spend on a bottle would invariably stretch quite far as you sip and savour it over time. Well done again Mackmyra.
Suggested musical accompaniment: The Sap EP by Alice in Chains
Sample disclosure: This sample was received as part of the Summerton Virtual Whisky Festival tasting pack that came with the ticket to the event. A well organised event with great drams and contributions from the whisky makers and fans alike. All notes here are intended as an honest, fair and independent review of the whisky itself and not as a promotion. Please drink responsibly, and most importantly, wisely.