Archive for the ‘Scotch Whisky A-G’ Category

Carn Mor Celebration of the Cask Glenlossie 1997 (19 year old) 54.2%

Bourbon Hogshead 6749/ Dist: Nov 1997 Btl: Apr 2017/ Tasted: May 2017

Pleasantly mature and straw-like aromas with fragrant barley, malt and wood spices. Hints of darker toffee appear along with uber soft but chunky vanilla. The oak does become a little dominating and dusty but a touch of citrus injects some freshness.

The palate opens with the creamy oak and zesty citrus. There’s a real battle going on between the oak and the spirit, but the citrus, aided by the alcohol eventually holds the high ground. Hints of straw, toffee, white fruits and minerals. The finish is very limey and austere, which implies it’ll need a drop of water.

Diluted the nose becomes wonderfully perfumed with orange and tangerine notes. The oak is relegated to the background. The palate displays more barley and straw. Like the nose the oak influence is subtler and the orange and tangerine notes appear. Superb, juicy finish with a touch of malt and dark spices in the finish now.


Hunter Laing Old Malt Cask Glen Keith 1996 (20 year old) 50%

Bourbon/ Code: OMC2633/ Dist: Aug 1996 Btl: 2017/ Tasted: May 2017

Initially the nose is quite heavy on the toffee/ caramel oak, although a touch of hard barley, pine, honey and grainy dried fruit comes through.

The palate mirrors the nose with the toffee’d oak, although the caramel notes have a burnt edge and the barley is very much of the industrial persuasion. Straightforward and continuing in an oaky manor. Short, grainy finish.

Claxton’s ‘The Single Cask’ Arran 1996 (20 year old) 50.3%

Bourbon Hogshead/ Dist: Sept 1996 Btl: 2017/ Tasted: Apr 2017

The nose is quite dark and malty with gritty, earthy, coffee’d tannins. Polished but rugged with a subtle tropical fruit and honey background. With time hints of lime, mature barley and vanilla. Give it some time in the glass and it opens up rather well.

The palate is earthy and malty with again a rugged but polished character. Like the nose the fruit is very subtle which comes through on the middle along with a touch of milky and gritty oak. Edgy, mouth-watering finish with a lovely complexity of citrus, creamy barley, vanilla, apple blossom, hyacinth, white licourice and the returning malt. Wonderful progression and an excellent finish.

Claxton’s ‘The Single Cask’ Benrinnes 1997 (19 year old) 51.5%

Bourbon Hogshead/ Dist: Aug 1997 Btl: 2017/ Tasted: Apr 2017

The nose is quite mature and sawdusty with vanilla, white chocolate, sweet honey and sweet spice. The sweetness becomes quite dominating and candied, which turns into a sort of raspberry mousse note with rose petals and voluptuously creamy oak. Late herbal, onion skin notes. Very unusual.

The palate is full and honeyed with plenty of sweet oak and again that raspberry mousse-like character. The alcohol stops it becoming too sweet, but it’s pretty confected. Long with a touch of bitter chocolate spice, liquorice, pepper and finally the returning sweet oak. It’s like ‘toshan on steroids!

Claxton’s ‘The Single Cask’ Glenburgie 2008 (9 year old) 57.8%

Bourbon Hogshead/ Dist: Mar 2008 Btl: 2017/ Tasted: Apr 2017

The nose is a little tight and neutral to begin with and almost like a grain spirit, with dried fruit and grass, joined by a touch of barley. With time hints of honeysuckle and earth appear along with some herbal rye-like notes.

There’s a touch more toffee’d oak on the palate long with barley and grass. Subtle, but sharp citrus on the middle. A little short with lingering ok and the dried, grainy fruit returning.

A drop of water freshens and brings out some white liquorice and sweeter barley. The palate is still pretty oaky but the spirit is heavier and oilier, but the citrus notes have disappeared. Still short with the oak following through.

North Star Spirits Glenallachie 2008 (8 year old) 58.3%

Sherry Butt/ Dist: Aug 2008 Btl: May 2017/ Tasted: Jun 2017

Aromas of edgy toffee and gritty sherrywood tannins along with hints of rye-like herbs. Subtle youthful mashtun notes mingle with dried fruit, liquorice and barley.

The palate is clean and herbal with plenty of sherry wood, dried fruit, toffee and coffee. Quite full and cask orientated. A little masked ion the finished but showing some subtle spices.

Water makes the nose quite fragrant and pushes the sherry back to allow the summer barley notes to come through. Again there is less sherry influence on the palate and more malt and barley. Subtly biscuity with lingering dried fruit and spice.

Gleann Mor ‘A Rare Find’ Benrinnes 1995 (18 year old) 46%

Refill Port/ Dist: 1995 Btl: 2014/ Tasted: June 2017

The nose is subtly herbaceous with polished, soft and creamy/ sweet port fruit. With time hints of dusty oak vanillins and violets appear along with a light barley note, but it’s the cask that dominates.

The palate is quite sweet and syrupy with subtle chocolaty spice, herbs and subtle spicy red fruit. Beneath the mature oak vanillins and barley can be detected. Long and very juicy with lingering sweet porty fruit and dusty oak. You could argue it’s a bit one-dimensional but it delivers that simplicity rather well.

Gleann Mor ‘A Rare Find’ Auchroisk 1996 (18 year old) 46%

Refill Bourbon/ Dist: 1996 Btl: 2014/ Tasted: June 2017

The nose opens with a huge blast of caramel oak along with some Madeira-eque biscuity notes, cereal and raisinated fruit. Then some red fruit, which hints at a possible port finish (actually not – tasted blind). When it settles down it displays some lovely fragrant barley, toasted oak, minerals, heather and nettles.

The palate opens with hints of burnt caramel and a sub-industrial hard barley notes, which wasn’t on the nose. Again it has a winey red fruit character and hints of chocolaty tannins. Good length, although it is surprisingly a little hot, with hints of menthol and lingering red berry fruit.

Malts of Scotland Bruichladdich 2003 (10 year old) 56.3%

First Fill (?) Sherry Hogshead – MOS13051/ Dist: Jun 2003 Btl: Oct 2013/ Tasted: Nov 2014

A serious nose full of what must be first fill Oloroso. Very clean and leafy with liquorice, treacle, tar and a touch of brandy butter. It’s all sherry, which isn’t a surprise with developing green nuts, tobacco and dried fruit.

The palate opens with an intensity of green nuts, dried fruit, liquorice, treacle and tar. So thick and unctuous you could slice it up and serve it for desert! Again there is zero distillery character or  coastal character for that matter. There is a very minor blemish noticeable on the middle, which unfortunately lingers. Quite a dry, tannic, tart after-taste.

Oh dear. A drop of water brings out that struck match note on the nose. However it is less noticeable on the palate now. It is a homogenous sherry palate, it could be any from distillery and ultimately is rather disappointing.

Malts of  Scotland Dalmore 1996 (21 year old) 57.4%

Sherry Hogshead 17063/ Dist: 1996 Btl: 2017/ Tasted: Mar 2017

Very soft aromas of coffee and treacle with hints of malt, milk chocolate, raisin, sultana and a touch of citrus. There’s plenty of character from the oak with developing burnt wood, astringent herbs, sweet orange, dark chocolate and a touch of vanilla.

The palate is quite tannic and grainy but supple with plenty of balancing treacle. There’s a touch of dark chocolate, herbs and a slight bittering from the wood, but like the nose the treacle and malt balances. Subtly citric with a touch of coffee. Long and remaining coffee’d  with peppery tannins and drying wood notes. Impeccably clean and quite impressive for a sherry monster!