Isle of Jura is a distinctive Island whisky distillery that never disappoints. It has the smokiness and salt that I demand from an Island Scotch, but there are always a few pleasant surprises. In my experience, the deep, dark island elements are balanced by fresh and light flavors that are more reminiscent of a Highland malt. Although the Jura distillery is relatively new, built in the early sixties, it is built on the grounds and the reputation of an older distillery of the same name.
The Isle of Jura Superstition is named for the notoriously superstitious nature of the residents of this Scottish isle, so I opened this bottle with high expectations. It was a pleasant and enriching tasting experience. The whisky is somewhat bipolar in nature, with a strong peated flavor balanced by something a little more delicate, but the two profiles are wed into one distinctive whisky.
Superstition is crafted from whiskies aged for 13 and 21 years, including a very peated malt. It is a deep golden amber color that hints at its richness and depth. Although I tasted it in summer, I felt immediately carried away to the crisp and smoky autumn nights that are still a season away. This single malt is interesting, and I don’t mean that in a bad way. You will find yourself contemplating it while tasting, so don’t use it as a social drink.
To sum it up, the Isle of Jura Superstition is not something I will drink every night, but I now consider it an essential part of my whisky collection.
Nose: 19/25. The nose is full of smoke and peat, but there is a rich chocolate-y sweetness that balances these. A little salt and a bit of citrus add interest and make you want to keep smelling. I thought I detected a little green grass, but this was fleeting.
Palate: 20/25. Again the smoky sweetness dominates, but there is a warm spicy element that is intriguing. Buttery undertones added silkiness and made the dram roll right onto my tongue. While the flavors are superb, the texture was a little off—too oily for my taste. A little water seemed to enhance this unpleasant texture rather than remove it, but it also added spice and made the dram a bit hotter.
Finish: 15/25. The finish was at first harsh and acerbic, enough to leave your tongue almost sore. With a few drops of water added, the Superstition opened beautifully and had instead a smooth and sweet finish. There was very little smoke in the finish either way, which was surprising considering the smell and taste.
Character: 21/25. The Isle of Jura Superstition is rich, smooth and peaty. It is one of the most drinkable Island malts I have encountered, with a good balance albeit a few negative elements. These seem to disappear with a few drops of water, so try it neat and then with water. For people who are not fans of Island whisky tastes, this one might take a little getting used to. For fans of cigars, the Superstition seems to go very well with them due to complementary smoky and sweet elements.
Overall Rating for The Isle of Jura Superstition Whisky: 75/100