Angels’ Nectar – Blended Malt Scotch Whisky – 40% abv
Info: Created from a selection of Speyside and Highland malt whiskies (i.e. there’s no grain whisky in the blend) by Robert Ransom, formerly of Glenfarclas. No colouring added.
Colour: Clear with a hint of yellow, nice and honest.
Nose: Beautifully gentle buttery speyside nose, with a malty, gentle nutty background.
Palate: Fairly thick mouthfeel, especially considering it’s 40%. It’s got a well rounded balance of sweetness, a drop of oak and a hint of spice, along with some stewed fruits and lots of buttery creaminess.
Mortlach 22yo (Old and Rare) – 56.8% abv
Info: Hunter Laing’s Old and Rare platinum range with 120 bottles from a sherry butt. A Whisky Shop exclusive bottling.
Colour: Dark rusty gold.
Nose: Deep and rich, old leather and furniture polish. Autumn stewed fruits and a dollop of vanilla custard.
Palate: Nice and thick, smooth at first with heat and spices building fairly fast, it is quite high strength after all. Once you get used to that you come on to stewed winter fruits and rich old oak flavours.
GLENTURRET DISTILLERY RELEASES ONLINE EXCLUSIVE SINGLE CASK BOTTLING
Exciting opportunity to purchase a bottle from the best cask of 1986
Glenturret Distillery has released a rare 28 year old single cask malt whisky, described as the best cask that has ever been released by Scotland’s oldest working distillery. Approximately 240 bottles of The Brock Malloy Edition #Cask 328 (70cl, bottled at cask-strength) will be available to buy online.
The History behind the Cask:
On the 16th December 1986, two local stillmen, Hugh Malloy and Chic Brock delicately filled Cask 328 and skilfully warehoused the precious container to mature in the silence of the stunning hills of Perthshire, where it has remained for the past 28 years. Although stillmen came and went, the cask required no repair work in its 28 years and when Neil Cameron, the current Distillery Manager, tasted its contents he described it as the best cask laid down from that year. This attention and care from skilled hands resulted in notes of walnuts with oranges and a hint of jasmine to the nose, with spicy ginger and honeycomb to the palate.
SCAPA DISTILLERY OPENS ITS DOORS TO THE PUBLIC FOR THE FIRST TIME
Scapa, the artisanal Orcadian single malt Scotch whisky owned by Chivas Brothers, has today unveiled its first-ever distillery visitor centre as it seeks to educate malt connoisseurs about its unique production process, provenance and quality. The opening marks the first occasion that Scapa facilities have been accessible to the public in its 130-year history.
Hudson Baby Bourbon – 46% abv
Info: “Matured for only four years but aged by sonic maturation, resulting in a very rich oak flavour with hints of caramel and light vanilla.”. The first legal aged grain spirit to be produced in New York since Prohibition ended over 75 years ago. Hudson’s spirit is manufactured in a pot still at the Tuthilltown Distillery and is aged in small new oak casks. 100% corn.
Colour: Rich dark golden with rusty orange tints.
Nose: Rich and deep nose, packed with corn notes and liquorice along with some acetate drops and plenty of fresh new oak flavours.
Glen Garioch 21 Year Old (LotG) – 56.4% abv
Info: Distilled 1993 and aged in a bourbon cask for 21 years. Cask #798 yielded 250 bottles at natural cask strength. Bottled by Lady of the Glen.
Colour: Straw yellow, very natural looking.
Nose: Strong, creamy and full of sunny citrus tropical. After a moment a gentle smokiness comes out along with dry dunnage warehouse notes.
Palate: Thick and powerful on the palate with plenty of spice, ripe tropical fruits, old malt and some butteriness.
Finish: Spicey and fresher than expected, quite long in length. Old malt sweetness sticks around.
Water: Old drams should not be drowned with water, however this dram is so powerful it can take a reasonable glug, which really helps open it up and smooth it out, bringing out a bit more creaminess and reducing the spices a little. It becomes easier and more enjoyable.
Talisker Skye – 45.8% abv
Info: NAS. Toasted and refill American oak casks accentuate the sweet, citrus notes of Talisker. More notes on SWB here.
Colour: Orange golden.
Nose: Sweet, malty, some younger spirit. Toffee and caramel notes. Puffs of smoke from the peat.
Palate: A fair pinch of Talisker spices and pepper but with sweet malty caramel tones and puffs of gentle smoke. Quite thick feel.
Finish: Fairly long caramelly smoke with barley malt lasting out.
Water: Brings out a slight chocolate note on the nose. Reduced the spices on the palate, but also reduces the smoky peat.
BenRiach – 10yo – 43% abv
Info: Produced predominantly from spirit produced under BenRiach’s current owners. More info on SWB here.
Colour: Clear, medium to full golden.
Nose: Good powerful aroma, full bodied and malty. Green and red apples, a hint of ripe banana and a handful of nuts. After a while it becomes quite creamy.
Palate: Fairly full bodied, and quite spicy, although sweet with those apple skins, malt and ripe fruit notes coming through.
Finish: A fairly fresh finish that’s medium in length and gently warming with spices and a hint of tannins going through through to the end.
February and March saw two sets of single cask releases from Wemyss Malts, a bumper crop which includes two bottlings at cask strength. Click here to see information about the bottings
“Kirsch Gateau” 1988 single cask from Bunnahabhain Distilery, Islay, Cask Strength
“Cacao Geyser” 1998 single cask from Bowmore Distillery, Islay
“Snuffed Candle” 1999 singe cask from Aberfeldy Distillery, Highlands
“Dark Treacle Fondant” 2002 single cask from Craigellachie Distillery, Speyside
“Honeysuckle Bower” 1995 single cask from Linkwood Distillery, Speyside
“Caribbean Crème” 1988 single cask from Invergordon Distillery, grain
“The Rockpool” 1995 single cask from Bowmore Distilery, Islay, Cask Strength
“Foraged Fruit Fool” 1991 single cask from Blair Athol Distillery, Highlands
“Toffee Tuile” 1999 singe cask from Aberfeldy Distillery, Highlands
“Kumquat Cluster” 1993 single cask from Glenrothes Distillery, Speyside
“Stem Ginger Preserve” 1995 single cask from Mortlach Distillery, Speyside
“Rhubarb Royale” 2001 single cask from Benrinnes Distillery, Speyside
I’ve been lucky enough to able to review six of the recent releases, so without further ado, let’s take a look at my thoughts…
Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard has announced the launch of Redbreast Mano a Lámh, the first expression in the Redbreast range to be matured solely in ex-oloroso sherry butts. This special whiskey is the latest release from the Midleton Distillery as it aims to satisfy the increasing global demand for new and original Single Pot Still Irish whiskeys.
Mano a Lámh, meaning ‘hand in hand’ in Spanish and Gaelic respectively, represents the relationship and passion between the Midleton Distillery and the collective of artisans in Spain, which has crafted the distillery’s sherry butts for more than 20 years.
Specially commissioned for the Midleton Distillery, oak is felled in the forests of Galicia, north-west Spain, and then crafted and seasoned by some of the country’s most prestigious family businesses. The Antonio Páez Lobato Bodega in the South crafts the oak into casks, which are then seasoned with Oloroso sherry for two years at the prestigious Páez Morilla Bodega in the nearby sherry capital of the world, Jerez.