Reviews

Glenrothes Whisky Maker’s Cut (48.8%, OB 2020)

When Glenrothes changed hands from Berry Brothers & Rudd to Edrington in 2018, the range underwent a revamp: vintages were replaced by more conventional age statements (Balblair followed suit in early 2019), and the core range focused heavily on sherry cask maturation. The prices of the younger bottles are quite reasonable. However, I did have … Continue reading Glenrothes Whisky Maker’s Cut (48.8%, OB 2020)

Tomintoul Mystery Dram Tasting

Hosted by Tomintoul brand ambassador Claire Tesh, this online blind tasting brought together three generously provided mystery drams. I normally don’t go out of my way to buy Tomintoul (unlike its sister distillery Glencadam), so this tasting was a great opportunity to sample a couple of drams I wouldn’t otherwise have tried. First up, unsurprisingly, … Continue reading Tomintoul Mystery Dram Tasting

Tomatin 2006 Oloroso Sherry Cask (58.5%, Cask no. 2842, Distillery Exclusive 2018)

This 12 year-old Oloroso cask was hand-filled at Tomatin two years ago. They are among the best in terms of the bottle-your-own selection, giving visitors a choice of five: apart from this one, there was a 5 year-old virgin oak cask, a 12 year-old ex-Bourbon, a 16 year-old Pedro Ximenez finish, and a (sadly unaffordable, … Continue reading Tomatin 2006 Oloroso Sherry Cask (58.5%, Cask no. 2842, Distillery Exclusive 2018)

Aultmore 12 (46%, OB 2019)

Aultmore seems to be the most discreet out of Dewar’s portfolio of malts. Craigellachie has a more divisive love-it-or-hate-it profile, Aberfeldy is the designated home of the Dewar’s blend, and Royal Brackla is the most premiumised of their brands, which leaves Aultmore without any distinguishing characteristics marketing-wise. Like Craigellachie, Aultmore is bottled at 46% with … Continue reading Aultmore 12 (46%, OB 2019)

Glengoyne Legacy Series Chapter One (48%, OB 2019)

Glengoyne’s Legacy Series will feature ongoing releases with the intention of paying hommage to the distillery’s past. Chapter One is a tribute to 19th century distillery manager Cochrane Cartwright, who first introduced sherry casks to Glengoyne. Unlike other expressions, there’s no official information on the cask make-up, but this features a good proportion of first … Continue reading Glengoyne Legacy Series Chapter One (48%, OB 2019)

Glengoyne 21 (43%, OB 2019)

And so we reach the pinnacle of the Glengoyne core range. Well, close enough in any case – my budget doesn’t extend to the 25 year-old unfortunately, but this 21 year-old remains just about affordable. Like its older sibling, it’s matured exclusively in sherry casks, predominantly first-fill European oak. For what it’s worth, I would … Continue reading Glengoyne 21 (43%, OB 2019)

Glengoyne 18 (43%, OB 2020)

The higher up we go in Glengoyne’s age statements, the more sherry casks are used in the vatting. The proportion of first fill sherry in the 18 year-old is 50%, with 35% coming from European oak and 15% from American. The remaining 50% is from refill casks, without information about their previous contents. Nose: Oranges … Continue reading Glengoyne 18 (43%, OB 2020)

Glengoyne 10 (40%, OB 2020)

We started the Glengoyne series with the entry-level 12 year-old, and before we continue to the higher range it’s time to try the even more entry-level 10. It has a similar cask composition to the 12, but a greater emphasis on refill wood, which makes up 70% of the vatting. The remaining 30% is shared … Continue reading Glengoyne 10 (40%, OB 2020)

Glengoyne 12 (43%, OB 2018)

Time for a series of Glengoyne reviews, and what better place to start than the 12 year-old? Glengoyne is one of my favourite distilleries, both because the whisky is delicious and because it’s a great place to visit. Yes, it’s a bit touristy (especially given its proximity to Glasgow), but there’s always a warm welcome, … Continue reading Glengoyne 12 (43%, OB 2018)

A Fine Christmas Malt (54.2%, The Whisky Exchange 2019)

The Whisky Exchange’s Christmas malt is now a tradition, and last year saw the release of a 10 year-old Speyside whisky. The label doesn’t say, but it comes from Linkwood. Its reception wasn’t quite as enthusiastic as it could’ve been – the fact that its predecessor in 2018 was a 17 year-old Glenfarclas may have … Continue reading A Fine Christmas Malt (54.2%, The Whisky Exchange 2019)

Craigellachie 13 (46%, OB 2019)

Craigellachie aren’t quiet about the fact that they like to do things differently. For example, while most distilleries remove the sulphur that occurs as part of the distillation, the Craigellachie style actively embraces it: the use of worm tubs for instance helps preserve sulphur notes and create the big, meaty character that the brand is … Continue reading Craigellachie 13 (46%, OB 2019)

Port Charlotte Scottish Barley (50%, OB 2017)

Terroir matters for Bruichladdich, as the packaging states, which explains why this Port Charlotte was made with barley grown exclusively in Scotland. Barley is often an international affair, with distilleries importing it from as far as Ukraine for example. Bruichladdich have of course produced even more local varieties of their whisky, moving closer to Single … Continue reading Port Charlotte Scottish Barley (50%, OB 2017)

In Brief: Glendalough 13 (46%, OB 2016)

This is a distillery bottling, but Glendalough’s whiskey hadn’t come of age yet, so it was sourced from another distillery. It was a very pleasant surprise – quite ‘naked’ and eau-de-vie-like but not immature, with floral, citrus and stone fruit aromas that were reminiscent of bourbon-matured Bladnoch and Balblair. Irish whiskey can sometimes be a … Continue reading In Brief: Glendalough 13 (46%, OB 2016)

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