Archive for the ‘Port Dundas’ Category

North Star Spirits Port Dundas 2004 (12 year old) 58.8%

Bourbon Hogshead/ Dist: 2004 Btl: 2016/ Tasted: Nov 2016

The nose is a little oak aged vodka-like, which isn’t a surprise given its age. However it does have some pleasant dried fruit and crisp grainy notes along with a touch of lemon, charred oak and sweet cereal.

The palate is soft with vanilla laced dried oily bananary fruit, sweet cereal and charred oak. Gentle but biting grain spices come through on the middle. Long and remaining spicy with lingering dried fruit, lemon, cereal and oak. A pleasant grain, which unfortunately is a little too expensive £46.95 for it’s level of complexity.


Hunter Laing Sovereign Grain Port Dundas 1990 (25 year old) 51.9%

Bourbon/ Code: SOV2057/ Dist: Feb 1990 Btl: May 2015/ Tasted: Jun 2015

Lovely, fresh aromas of castor sugar sprinkled sultana, dried apricot and lemon with the oak adding hints of toffee and coconut. The alcohol gives the nose a real vibrancy and the oak is quite subtle. Late hints of smoke.

The palate is soft and sweet-ish with sweet grains and sugar coated, lightly smoked dried fruit showing first. Like the nose the combination of alcohol and citrus notes give it a fresh, zingy vibrancy. Long, grainy and herbal finish with the toffee/ caramel returning and a lightly salted after-taste.

Hunter Laing Sovereign Grain Port Dundas 1988 (27 year old) 58.7%

Code: SOV2075/ Dist: Oct 1988 Btl: Nov 2015/ Tasted: Dec 2015

The nose opens with slightly balsamic cherry fruit and a riot of intense spices. Hints of treacle and dark ‘Bourbony’ oak appear as the spices turn gorgeously dusty. Very impressive with an almost malty richness.

The palate is a little lighter with rum-like dried fruit and treacle. The sharp grains balance the treacle and allow some plumy fruit and wood spices to emerge. Wow! Those spices have a tongue tingling intensity. The treacle finally gets the upper hand in the finish but the herbal grains offer balance. Stunning finish!

Hunter Laing Sovereign Port Dundas 1990(?) (27 year old) 51.5%

Bourbon/ Code: SOV2119/ Dist: 1990(?) Btl: 2017(?)/ Tasted: Jan 2018

An earthy and edgy, but polished nose. Lightly smoky with hints of dried fruit, peanut and sweet vanilla oak.

The palate opens with the nutty and toasty oak, followed by some gently oxidised, sweet fruit – apricot and sultana. Slightly citric middle with developing coffee notes. Long, nutty, dried fruit finish. Superb intensity.

Hunter Liang Sovereign Port Dundas 1988 (28 year old) 55.1%

Bourbon/ Code: SOV2099/ Dist: Oct 1988 Btl: 2017/ Tasted: May 2017

A fresh and saline nose with oily dried fruit and spice. A lovely melange of apple, clove, cinnamon and very subtle oak. With time the grainy spirit character emerges along with a light honey.

The palate is fuller and deeper with honey coated, rich, dried fruit and hints of rum-like sugar cane. The middle is lightly bitter with a lovely intensity of woody spice notes, which are amplified by the abv. Long, dried fruit finish with lingering grainy and coffee’d spice notes that really make the tongue tingle!

Hunter Laing Sovereign Grain Port Dundas 1978 (35 year old) 58.1%

Bourbon/ Code: SOV2002/ Dist: Jan 1978 Btl: July 2013/ Tasted: Aug 2013

A beguiling, floral nose with citrus and crisp grain notes. Gently spiced with hints of cinnamon, clove and raisinated fruit. A light herbal note appears and finally the boisterous oak vanillins come through with a fairly heavily toasted character.

The palate is wonderfully spicy to start with vanilla laced, light treacle-toffee. Quite a dry, tongue tingling middle as the piquant alcohol and spices run riot. Lovely length with a gentle, sugared sweetness along with some herbs, bacon fat and lightly dried fruit notes. Those smoked meat notes really linger and the after-taste is quite minty/ camphory.

Hunter Laing Sovereign Port Dundas 1978? (36 year old) 58.7%

Code: SOV2031/ Tasted: May 2014

A lovely Guyana-esque nose. Oily and herbal, toffee’d dried fruit. Quite smoky with hints of iodine and menthol. Very vibrant and agricol-like now. Beautiful aged rancid with grilled nuts, butter and earth.

The palate is lightly oiled and quite sugar to begin with, both granulated and brown. Bitter chocolate oak and nuts lead into a quite medicinal middle with iodine, smoke and marzipan coming through on the finish. The finish has a stunning intensity with the agricoly herbal notes dominating along with some fresh citrus, pepper and cardamon infused dark chocolate after-taste.

Hunter Laing Sovereign Port Dundas 1978 (36 year old) 59.7%

Code: SOV2049/ Dist: Jan 1978 Btl: Nov 2014/ Tasted: Dec 2014

An intense, gritty, coffee’d bourbon oak nose with buzzy spices and a lovely touch of berry fruit, light syrup, toffee and a thin wisp of smoke. Very complex with an emerging herbal rye-like note.

The palate is as gritty and spicy as the nose would suggest, but the coffee, Demerara and luscious dried sultana follows along with a touch of citrus. Incredibly deep with a touch of toffee on the middle as oak wakes up, but it fades pretty quickly to leave the citrus cleansed spicy, dry dried fruits on the finish. Very impressive.

Hunter Laing Sovereign Port Dundas 1974 (40 year old) 47.6%

Code: SOV2078/ Dist: Nov 1974 Btl: Sept 2015/ Tasted Oct 2015

Stunning aromas of dark, Armagnac-esque fruit and duty spice. Very mellow with hints of molasses, milk chocolate and woody spice but hints of sweet coconut and vanilla lighten. With time some grainy spice and light herbal notes appear along with some almost sherried dried fruits.

The palate is not as dark as the nose. A fabulous mouthful of coffee, toffee, milk chocolate, molasses, walnut, date and dried fig. A touch of herbal spice appears and the grain adds a lovely twang. Intensely spicy and grainy finish but again the almost sherried dried fruit balances superbly. Finally the coconutty oak and cinnamon comes through and lingers.

Hunter Laing Sovereign Port Dundas 1965 (50 year old) 41.2%

Bourbon/ Dist: Jun 1965 Btl: Oct 2015/ Code: SOV2077/ Tasted: Nov 2015

Crisp aromas of sweet oak – crème caramel and light vanilla butter cream. Soft Bourbony spices and a hint of herbal grain appear along with some milk chocolate and citrus.

The palate is crisp and citric with supple vanilla oak. Quite toasty with hints of dried fruit, toffee and subtle chocolate notes. Very fresh and crisp on the middle as the grain kicks on along with a gentle spice and a balancing treacle note. Long and slightly woody with hints of bitter coffee and spices.

Duncan Taylor Rare Auld Port Dundas 1973 (34 year old) 54.5%

Sherry Cask 128321/ Dist: 1973 Btl: 2007/ Tasted: Jan 2008

Yes, it’s a sherry monster! Intense, leafy and very slightly vegetal (although that can be forgiven!) It’s earthy and honied with pure cocoa bean notes. There’s the crisp grain intensity lurking beneath all the buckets of mature honey, along with a touch of dried fruit and a slight floral note.

The palate is no surprise quiet leafy and ever so slightly vegetal (again forgiven!) Wow, it’s 70% pure dark chocolate all the way, oily and intense with the grainy fruit coming through on the middle. It gently meanders into dried Guyana rum-like fruit, cane sugar, figs, raisins and hints of linseed oil. Finishing with a pure cocoa intensity. It doesn’t take to water particularly well, take my word for it, so if you are choco-holic then take it neat!

Douglas Laing Directors Cut Port Dundas 1982 (30 year old) 58.7%

Bourbon/ Code: DIR0020/ Dist: Feb 1982 Btl: June 2012/ Tasted: June 2012

That’s a seriously deep and complex nose. Mature, lightly liquorice coated dried rum-like fruit mingles with a huge amount of dusty spices. Slightly herbal and now moving into a more herbal, Armangnac-esque rancio. The oak arrives on a wave of luscious, creamy vanillins and with time a touch of coffee and some subtle graininess becomes apparent.

The palate opens with purpose and intensity, showing some amazing maturity. Soft, ripe berry fruit and toffee oak. The nippy grain comes through along with some tannin and alcohol. Once that passes the rum-like dried fruit appear along with some pure, soft vanilla pod. Quite a mouth-watering finish with hints of milk chocolate and more dried fruit. A superb old grain.

Douglas Laing Directors Cut Port Dundas 1981 (30 year old) 59.5%

Code: DL7600/ Dist: Jan 1981 Btl: Nov 2011/ Tasted: Mar 2012

High toned, crisp and very grainy aromas. The grain aromas float above a bed of beautiful, mature American oak which imparts hints of violet, rich toffee, caramel, crème brulee and coffee.

The palate opens with the sweet grain followed by the oak, which starts to bitter but is rather well held in check by some fabulously sweet, tropical plum and apricot fruit. Mouth watering alcohol gives the finish quite a kick.

With water the nose becomes richer, fruitier and pleasantly evocative with hints of banana. The palate has become velvety soft and creamy with some rum like dried fruit now showing. Lovely length with the creamy oak returning.


Douglas Laing ‘The Clan Denny’ Port Dundas 1992 (21 year old) 55.7%

Bourbon/ Code: DEN0104/ Dist: Jan 1992 Btl: Mar 2013/ Tasted: Apr 2013

Gently spiced and lightly honeyed aromas with fresh, slightly smoky grains mingle with a delicate, herbal, dried fruit rancio and subservient oak.

Relatively light in body, the palate opens with the lightly spiced honey, dried apricot, sultanas and oak. The spices build pleasantly on the middle as the grain and alcohol combination begins to nip. A little fuller now with the oak adding a feathery caramel note and a little dry tannin. Good length with quite a sweet dried fruit finish.

Douglas Laing ‘The Clan Denny’ Port Dundas 1988(?) (25 year old) 55.2%

Bourbon/ Code: DEN0121/ Dist: ???? Btl: June 2014/ Tasted: July 2014

The aromas are initially fairly toffee’d but the crisp but sweet grain comes through with purpose. The aromas have a lovely verve and freshness with a subtle dried fruit and developing vanilla character. Gently spiced with a touch of smoke.

The palate opens with the light toffee followed by the sweet grain notes. Lightly citric on the middle with developing oily dried sultana and white grape. Lovely spiciness and a long, sweet barley sugar and crisp grain finish. Like the nose it is wonderfully fresh and vibrant.

Douglas Laing ‘The Clan Denny’ Port Dundas 1978 (33 year old) 54.2%

Bourbon/ Code: DEN0077/ Dist: Jan 1978 Btl: Sept 2011/ Tasted: Sept 2011

A lovely, deep, richly oaked nose, accented with some delightfully crumbly spices. A serious hit of sweet oak vanillins but balanced by hints of barley sweetness and lithe, slightly rum-like dried fruits.

The palate is soft, yet intense with a distinct rum-like dried fruit rancio. The oak is really well behaved and sits in the background as some beautiful spice, alcohol and vanilla notes build. Stunning depth and length with a delicate oiliness to the fruit.

A drop of water makes the nose subtler and less intense but it brings out the oaks toasty character and the grain takes on a wonderful rye bite. The palate like the nose is subtler and softer. More mouth-filling and with less of the oak character, the dried fruits show wonderfully. Maybe it lacks the punch of taking it neat but either way it’s yet another stunning grain cask. And at this price a real bargain.

Douglas Laing ‘The Clan Denny’ Port Dundas 1978 (34 year old) 58.6%

Bourbon/ Code: DEN0084/ Dist: Jan 1978 Btl: May 2012/ Tasted: May 2012

Quite herbal and high toned aromas. Oily, slightly spicy and smoky with some very violet and mature American oak. Quite elegant and complex, although the aromas take some time to emerge. Now slightly leathery with hints of tobacco and fennel. The oak isn’t overly intrusive and it sits beneath adding a lovely degree of pleasantly sweet vanillins.

The palate opens with some sweet spice and fat corn. Very full an flavoursome with a touch of herbs. The alcohol and wood tannins do dry the middle a tad but there is some sweetness to balance. Serious, grainy intensity on the middle, which leads into a long, smoky finish nuanced with unpretentious oak. In fact the oak is rather delicate. That graininess continues through, giving the finish a lovely herbal-grain freshness. Very complex with a hint of slightly oxidised fruit in the aftertaste.

Douglas Laing ‘The Clan Denny’ Port Dundas 1978 (34 year old) 52%

Bourbon/ Code: DEN0091/ Dist: Jan 1978 Btl: Nov 2011/ Tasted: Nov 2012

A lovely nose opening with hints of burnt orange and fresh violets, followed by the soft, sweet, creamy, lightly toasted oak. Wave after wave of creamy coffee-oak aromas rise from the glass along with a touch of smoke and a seriously developing perfumed note. Finally some spicy grain appears but the oak is still in total control, but it’s so wonderfully soft and inviting!

The palate is quite fudgy with the toffee/ coffee oak showing first along with a large dollop of toffee coated banana. It takes a while for the grainy spice notes to force their way through but they do! Quite elegant for such an oak monster. It hits a seriously mouth-coating crescendo on the middle, punctuated by the balancing alcohol and nippy grain. Lovely length with a raisinated fruit and delicate spice finish.


Douglas Laing Old Particular Port Dundas 2004 (11 year old)

Bourbon/ Code: OLD0314/ Dist: Jul 2004 Btl: 2016/ Tasted: May 2016

A nose of brittle lemon, smoke and crunchy cereal. Hints of dried fruit, but the aromas are more like an oak aged vodka in style. Quite sweet with building smoke.

The palate shows more vanilla oak with hints of lemon and dried fruit. Straightforward but pleasantly deep with building spice. Medium length with lingering, crisp and spicy grain notes.

Douglas Laing Old Particular Port Dundas 2004 (12 year old) 48.4%

Code: OLD0342/ Dist: Jul 2004 Btl: Nov 2016?/ Tasted: Dec 2016

The nose is soft and nutty with plenty of rummy dried fruit and vodka-like grainy notes. A touch of oak follows along with lemon candy.

The palate again displays a very oak aged vodka character with charred oak, lemon candy and subtle dried fruit. Slightly crisp and grassy on the finish with dried fruit lingering.

Douglas Laing Old Particular Port Dundas 2004 (12 year old) 48.4%

Refill Bourbon Barrel/ Code: OLD0443/ Dist: Jul 2004 Btl: June 2017

On first sniff the aromas are quite smoky and it feels more like it’s been aged in an ex-Islay cask. A little oak aged vodka-like with lemon and very subtle dried fruit.

The palate opens with sweet cereal and subtly toasty oak. Again there’s a distinct smokiness although it’s subtler than the nose. Simple but pleasant with lingering dried fruit, citrus and subtle tannins. For a young grain it’s very drinkable.

Douglas Laing Old Particular Port Dundas 1990 (25 year old) 51.5%

Code: OLD0240/ Dist: Feb 1990 Btl: Sept 2015/ Tasted: Oct 2015

Aromas of light treacle coated dried fruits and pungent, rich, almost sherried spices. Hints of prune, walnut oil and gritty tannins. Lovely maturity with hints of vanilla and edgy green fruit. Denser than the Girvan. With time the oak becomes beautifully fragrant and dusty.

Like the nose, the palate opens with the light treacle, walnuts, prune and a touch of raisinated fruit and some lovely dark wood spices. Subtly herbal grain notes come through on the middle. Very long and very spicy. Vibrant and edgy with the herbal grain dominating but the light treacle, dark chocolate and dried fruit balances.

Douglas Laing Old Particular Port Dundas 1988 (27 year old) 54.6%

Refill Hogshead/ Code: OLD0276/ Dist: Oct 1988 Btl: Nov 2015/ Tasted: Dec 2015

Intense, herbal toffee and edgy dried fruit aromas. Seriously full and deep with layer upon layer of dried fruit, cashew nuts, vanilla oak, green oak, perfumed honey and earth. Sublime!

The palate is soft and silky with a touch more toffee, but like the nose the edgy, herbal dried fruit balances. A little more crisp grain and citrus notes showing but the lightly treacle, nuts and dried fruit powers through. Lovely intensity with an almost salty finish. The oak finally returns in the after-taste, but it’s still pretty subtle.

Douglas Laing Old Particular Port Dundas 1988 (27 year old) 51.5%

Refill Bourbon Hogshead/ Code: OLD0318/ DL11129

Dist: Oct 1988 Btl: May 2016/ Tasted: June 2016

A nose of lightly oiled lemon with hints of granulated sugar and sherbet. Good intensity with a developing brown sugar and dried fruit note along with some subtle but Bourbony oak.

Sweet Bourbony oak to start on the palate, followed by brown sugar and a good depth of slightly oily dried fruit. Lovely spice intensity with coffee tannins, light treacle and dry walnut shell. Long and remaining sweet, although the alcohol lends some balance. Lingering dried fruit, oak and grippy tannins. Pleasant white chocolate after-taste.

Douglas Laing Old Particular Port Dundas 1988 (28 year old) 51.8%

Refill Bourbon Hogshead/ Code: OLD0380/ DL11526

Dist: Oct 1998 Btl: Nov 2016/ Tasted: Jun 2017

Aromas of high toned dried fruit with a touch of toffee’d oak. The nose fills out well with time as some darker dried fruit notes appear, along with a touch of honey and a subtle smokiness.

The palate is lighter and edgier with plenty of crisp column still spice and dried fruit. Slightly smoky with the oak sitting ijn the background. Lovely depth and continuing quite spicy through the finish. Lingering dried fruit and citrus.

Dewar Rattray Port Dundas 1991 (17 year old) 61.5%

Cask 120376/ Dist: June 1991 Btl: Nov 2008/ Tasted: Nov 2008

It’s a bit spirity to begin with but the hard and grainy character comes through with lovely, moist honeyed orange and a touch of peat of the slightly medicinal nature!? My, it’s really changing now. There’s a slight toffee note amidst the peppery grains flying around. Hang on, we’re changing again. Now the toasted vanilla and bourbon notes arrive. This has more personalities than mr mad from madsville! – I love it!

On the palate it’s crisp, grassy, grainy and a bit spirity, followed by slightly perfumed bourbon fruit and wood notes. Quiet piquant with hints of rum like dried fruit, which gradually build to an irresistible chocolate infused mouth-watering finale. The aftertaste is a tad woody with hessian notes. 

A drop of water sweetens the nose. There’s more vanilla and some caramel coated wheat biscuit, heavy toffee and sugar coated banana amongst the crisp grainy notes.

The palate displays more of the rum like dried fruit and bourbon notes – crème caramel and toffee, however the dried fruits hang in there. The flavours are immense and seep into the crevasses of the mouth, finishing again with an oily thwak of bourbon. There’s definitely not a dull moment with this – It’s a rum, no it’s a grain, no it’s a bourbon, no it’s a grain! – Major entertainment!