Balblair 1969 (OB) – 41.4%
One of Scotland’s oldest distilleries, Balblair was founded in 1790 by John Ross.
The 1969 was bottled in 2012 after spending 43 years in ex-bourbon remade hogsheads, 999 bottles of this extraordinary whisky were produced. This spirit was distilled at a time when the distillery malted its own barley on site and the stills were still directly coal-fired.
Bunnahabhain – 26yo – (IB) Lady of the Glen – 50.01%
Lady of The Glen’s first Islay release. Distilled on the 16th November 1987 and aged in a single refill American Bourbon cask, number 2470. It has been bottled at cask strength and there has been no colourings added – this is non-chill filtered. The cask yielded 205 bottles.
Colour: Light golden.
Nose: Slight alcoholic nip at first. Hint of peat alongside banoffee pie, that’s toffee and banana cake if you didn’t know. A slight coal kind of tar, from the cask no doubt with a nice oak background. Some time for this to open up works really well.
When you talk Indian whisky the first distillery that is often mentioned is Amrut. However, another excellent distillery that shouldn’t be ignored is the fabulous Paul John distillery in Goa, the one I’m taking a look at today.
Not a whisky I’ve had the opportunity to taste before, so I was pleased to be able to take part in a twitter tasting to check out four expressions from their core range.
Glen Grant 10yo – 40% – OB
The whisky distillery was founded in 1840 by brothers John and James Grant. In 1872, James Grant died and the distillery was passed down to his son, Major James Grant. He then built a second distillery across the road, joined by a whisky pipe which transported the new make spirit. Glen Grant No. 2, as it was first known, was completed in 1897, but just five years later it was closed, reopening in 1965, under the name Caperdonich then again closed and now demolished.
Glen Grant is the world’s second-biggest single malt whisky brand, and is the biggest selling single malt Scotch whisky in Italy.
Read on for my review…
Glenlivet Nadurra Oloroso – 48% – NAS – Travel Retail
“The Glenlivet Nàdurra Oloroso is a new permanent expression in the range.
The first-fill, ex-Oloroso sherry casks from Jerez in Spain impart rich, distinctive dried fruits aromas, warm spices, and notes of cinnamon and liquorice. The spirit combined with the cask influence, produces a sweetness of dark chocolate and a finish which is long and sweet with a slightly dry, spicy effect from the European oak maturation.”
Read on for my tasting notes…
Tomatin 1988 OB – 46%
“Tomatin are delighted to announce the addition of a 1988 Vintage expression to our core range. This expression will be released in batches.
The contents have been vatted from a combination of ex-Bourbon and ex-Port casks.”
Colour: Straw, clean and clear.
Nose: Old and packed with bourbon maturation goodness. There’s overly ripe bananas and soft tropical notes together with a sweet fudge quality.
Tomatin 14yo (port cask finish) – 46%
In April Tomatin introduced this new 14yo whisky to market…
“Having spent around 13 years in the finest Bourbon oak barrels, this whisky has spent a year in specially selected Portuguese port pipes which had previously held Tawny port for between 30 and 40 years. The result is an excellent dram which is soft and smooth with a port-influenced sweetness.”
Colour: Golden with faint reddy pink hues.
Reference Series – The First Educational Whisky
There’s a new funky experiment in town. I say new, it’s been out for a wee while, but I’m catching up, and for those that missed the initial announcement then this is a good follow up! It’s from those crazy people at… what… I have no idea which brand to pick… Master Of Malt / Drinks by the Dram / Blended Whisky Company / Maverick Drinks / That Boutique-y Whisky Company / Reference Series. More brands than you can shake a fist at… however you know who I mean I’m sure, basically that Ben chap.
Here’s the PR text which explains probably better than I can… Once you’ve read it, please find my tasting notes of the initial three releases at the bottom! 🙂