We started our Journey (get it) through the new Jura lineup with the non aged statement “Seven Wood” recently. That was the more premium priced NAS whisky. This time we are going to the opposite end of the spectrum with the entry level… Journey.
The Journey is 100% ex-bourbon barrels from America. It is bottled at 40% ABV and is widely available everywhere from whisky shops to supermarkets. Expect to pay around 33 pounds in the UK unless it is on offer. In which case it will probably be around 25 pounds. There is no information on it but you can expect it has been coloured and filtered. I believe the entire range has gone the same way sadly.
The point of this whisky is to introduce the house style of the brand. With the rebranding Jura has become closer to most other island malts and retains a slight peatiness throughout the entire range. Previously, the portfolio of ongoing expressions bounced between being unpeated, lightly peated and heavily peated. Each one hitting a part on the flavour wheel with a scatter gun approach. This time around Jura is pinning its colours to the mast and hoping to attract a new following.
Colour – whisky yellow
Nose – The most obvious thing is a chemically ester-y note. There is a light smoke flavour wrapped around it though. Cereals notes give things a doughy undertone.
Palate – The palate is far less sweet than the nose. Burnt toast and butter, pine wood and chilli pepper heat is more the order of the day.
Finish – The finish is a progression of the palate becoming increasingly sharp and hot. The 40% though keeps things safe and restrained.
I have seen reports of this being some of the worst whisky on the market. It is true there is far better supermarket treats to be had our there. However, in terms of the worst to ever try in the malted whisky category? By far, that title is still held by Tullibardine 225 Sauternes Cask Finish
There is character and interest here which is mostly achieved through the peated spirit. Peat flavours are good at masking a whole lot of weaknesses which has saved Bowmore for decades in my opinion. Distilleries in Speyside just have the luxury and have to try much harder to get our interest. Jura has done ok in its opening offer to the brand.