Neidhal is the first release in the Single Malts of India series. While the idea is conceived by Amrut distillery, the spirit comes from one of the hidden gems around India. Neidhal is a peated single malt from an undisclosed coastal distillery. Amrut polished this gem by tweaking a few things during its maturation, to fully showcase its potential.
An interesting attempt to showcase the lesser known distilleries in India with the support of a bigger brand. As far as I know, Kurinji is the only other bottling in this series so far.
Neidhal (46%, Amrut ‘Single Malts of India’ 2021, peated, Batch #01, 12.000 btl.)
Nose: only light peat. It’s a kind of mesquite / heather smoke, so don’t expect a firm Islay style for instance. The maritime note is more clear, I would say, with some fresh sea spray. Underneath there are hints of oranges and bananas, with light vanilla.
Mouth: now the peat is more up front, with smoked lemons and slightly harsh cigarette ashes, but the entire whisky lacks a bit of body. There’s a nice salty note but also a light metallic edge. Coconut comes out, as well as vague tart apple and mild pepper. Leathery hints. Far less tropical than Amrut claims in its official description.
Finish: medium, on liquorice and a hints of smoked herbs.
I’m not sure about this one. If this were really a start-up distillery, I would be mild and say it’s a decent first effort. However, with no further information, this is simply mediocre whisky. Certainly not the quality I expect from a first release in a new series showcasing Indian whisky. Take into account the excessive price and the outcome is mostly negative for me. Still available from HTFW or The Whisky Exchange (also samples).