Douglas Laing Invergordon Tasting Notes

Posted: September 23, 2011 in Invergordon, Scottish Grain Whisky

Douglas Laing Xtra Old Particular Invergordon 1966 (50 year old) 49.7%

Refill Bourbon Hogshead/ Code: XOP0061/ DL11182

Dist: Mar 1966 Btl: June 2016/ Tasted: Dec 2016

OMG! This nose is stunning! Moist Armagnac-esque prunes and  raisins, all liberally dusted in sugar. Hints of cigar and wood smoke pear amid the luscious vanillins and Bourbony oak. Grainy, bitter chocolate, cinnamon and delicious golden syrup notes follow. This nose is a wonderful blend of maturity and vibrancy.

The palate opens with delightful golden syrup coated fig, prune, walnuts, dried apricot, banana and soft spice. A little bitter chocolate tannins and nippy grain notes follow, but the syrup balances and coats the mouth. Some lovely dusty oak and baked fruit comes through on the middle. Long with sumptuously sweet oak and sweet spices mingling with bitter chocolate. Wow! Superbly balanced and vibrant with a touch of tannin but lingering toasty oak and dried fruit. Magnificent!


Douglas Laing Old Particular Invergordon 1997 (18 year old) 48.4%

Refill Barrel/ Code: OLD0319/ Dist: May 1997 Btl: June 2016

Tasted: July 2016

Young and tart on the nose with sweet white fruit and tight, charred oak. Hints of cereal and lemon with time. Really crisp and fresh.

The palate shows more lightly toffee’d charred oak. Straightforward with a touch of sweet, dried fruit. Good length with a continuation of the dried fruit and a lovely, spicy bite in the finish

Douglas Laing Old Particular Invergordon 1994 (21 year old) 50.7%

Refill Barrel/ Code: OLD0272/ Dist: Oct 1994 Btl: Nov 2015/ Tasted: Dec 2015

Crisp and high toned aromas. Lightly smoky with subtle dried fruit and very restrained oak. A touch of almost tart grapefruit appears along with a subtle baked fruit note.

The palate shows more dried fruit, although it is still relatively subtle. Quite citric and herbal with some lovely tongue tingling grainy spices. Very fresh and long with a little sweet oak appearing but the fresh citric notes hold.

Douglas Laing Old Particular Invergordon 1994 (21 year old) 52.8%

Refill Bourbon Barrel/ Code: OLD0295/ DL11091

Dist: Oct 1994 Btl: Nov 2016/ Tasted: Mar 2017

Quite aromatic and herbal on the nose with edgy dried fruit. Very subtly oaked, but it adds coconut and hazelnut notes. The grain is vibrant and focused and slightly floral with time.

The palate is oiler and richer with a good density of dried fruit and an almost malty richness beneath. Lightly spiced dried fruit follows with a touch of dark honey. The fresher grain notes develop on the middle and finish, leading to a crisp, citric finish with the grain powering through. The subtle honey and oak sits beneath and stops the finish being overly austere.

Douglas Laing Old Particular Invergordon 1987 (30 year old) 55%

Refill Sherry Butt/ Code: OLD0480/ Dist: Aug 1987 Btl: Sept 2017

Immensely rich and spicy with smoky and toasty oak, treacle, dark oxidised fruit and more wood smoke. Quite lively and complex with some lighter grainy dried fruit, almond and vanilla coming through.

Full and rich with like the nose, no shortage of sherry character. Layers of dark fruit, treacle, sultana, liquorice and sweet pepper. Super intensity ith just a subtle woodiness. Long and succulent with lingering dried apricot, sultana and just a smidge of citrus to enliven the finish.


Douglas Laing ‘The Clan Denny’ Invergordon 1993 (21 year old) 51.1%

Bourbon/ Code: DEN0124/ Dist: Jun 1993 Btl: Sept 2014/ Tasted: Oct 2014

A lovely nose of aromatic dried fruit, baked fruit, dusty spice and a touch of pastry. Hmm, Invergordon pie anyone!?! Very lightly oaked with just a smidgen of vanilla and some late soft smoke.

The palate opens with the baked fruit, lightly caramelised fruit and honey. Quite sweet with a touch of toffee, citrus and soft spice. There’s a gorgeous hit of sweet spices on the middle along with a little coconut. Good length with hints of white chocolate and drying tannins. Lightly smoked after-taste. Very enjoyable!

Douglas Laing ‘The Clan Denny’ Invergordon 1965 (46 year old) 44.2%

Bourbon/Code: DEN0089/ Dist: Dec 1965 Btl: Dec 2012/ Tasted: Jan 2013

The nose is quite lightly oaked and quite elegant which allows the rye like spices to show. Hints of cinnamon and some pure, buttery, almond oak bolster the nose along with some lightly raisinated fruit. Beautifully balanced and not too sweet, however there is a light sugared dusting. With time it becomes distinctly American as the rye like notes impose themselves.

The palate is sweet and gentle. A little on the straightforward side with hints of brown sugar, light oak and a refreshing citrus spirit note. Quite a smoky/ coal dust finish with a touch of bitter chocolate tannins. Pleasant but I have tasted more complex bottlings.

Douglas Laing ‘The Clan Denny’ Invergordon 1966 (45 year old) 47.1%

Bourbon/ Code: DEN0071/ Dist: Mar 1966 Btl: July 2011/ Tasted: July 2011

Now this is worth its price tag! A very subtle and grainy nose. Lightly smoked and ever so slightly fishy with toasted caramel, nuts and perfumed fruity spirit notes – citrus, apple, pear and some light honey. The oak is very subservient (which is quite unique in my experience of tasting old Invergordon’s) and sits beneath the wonderfully edgy, grainy spirit. Late notes of vanilla infused pineapple and banana appear. Extremely complex and a nose that you just have to take your time with and contemplate.

The palate is reality sweet with a serious fruitiness – pineapple, pear and apricot all seeped in wonderfully mature honey. The grain nips beautifully and the mouth waters uncontrollably. The oak is very restrained and it allows the spirit to conjure up some warming dried raisiny fruitcake, accented with hints of chocolate and coffee. The balance and complexity is sublime, the wood and oak is in perfect synchronicity. This is absolutely mind-blowingly good. It’s a real honour to be able to taste spirit like this!

Douglas Laing ‘The Clan Denny’ Invergordon 1966 (43 year old) 47.5%

Bourbon/ Code: DEN0080/ Dist: Mar 1966 Btl: Dec 2011/ Tasted: Dec 2011

A massive, slightly perfumed nose opening with some glorious dried fruit and grilled nuts. The oak is rather subdued (by Invergordon standards) but adds some fresh creamy vanilla. Seriously spicy and slightly earthy, but the grain has a beautifully balancing freshness. With time it develops an almost gristy sweetness. Elegant and very, very good.

The palate is silky smoothness personified! Liquid mature honey with mandarin, grilled nuts, alcohol soaked dried fruit and the sweetest spices imaginable coat the mouth. Gently oaked, with the grain imparting just the tenderest of nips and again like the nose it has a distinct perfumed edge. The oak returns on the finish, leaving a beautifully creamy mouth-feel. Absolutely gorgeous!


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