Arran 15 YO Rare Batch – French Oak: Bordeaux

ABV: 52.8 %
Origin: Islands
Type: Single Malt
Bottles in collection: 0
Emptied bottles: 0
Impression: 4/5

Tasting notes
Nose: This is sweet and fruity. At first there’s a menthol layer sitting on top of a sweet and fruity layer which consists of vanilla and liqeuer-soaked red berries. In the background there’s a small, dark and gritty complexity which consists of raisins, oil and just a hint of sulfur. When it settles it becomes sweeter and slightly sour. The lemon note can be found as a part of the center and in the back. The whole thing is a bit laid back and doesn’t pop out of the glass, but it still comes through as quite easy to access. This is a great nose with a little bit of everything nicely put in its place.

Mouth: It starts out with a sweet shell of coconut and vanilla. It’s a big contrast between the richness of the nose compared to the initial impact in the mouth. It’s immidiately rich and complex and there’s too much going on to really describe what’s happening. There’s a mix of fresh fruits, lemon, dark fruits and everything sits in a nice, floral vanilla and lemon center part. There’s also the oily and gritty note within, as well as notes of age, like dust, old wood and leather. It almost feels slightly smoky as well. It’s just an absolutely amazing experience at this point.

Finish: At the start of the transition the dusty notes move first and take seat on top. There’s a surge of spicyness which for the first time reveals its high ABV. It does hide some of the other flavours for a while before it starts to fade. The coconut is still in there and sits together with the dust and the floral notes on top of everything else. The center part is very sweet and fruity but it’s now moving towards the sour lemon note. The finish is long and it sort of sits in this manner for a good while without any changes. When it finally fades it reveals a slightly bitter and dry oakiness which feels slightly underwhelming. This is a great whisky with a fantastic middle part of the journey. It’s an explorer’s dram through and through.

Additional information
This whisky was aged in french oak casks which previously held red wine from The mêdoc region north of Bordeaux. 2580 bottles were released. It’s unchillfiltered and has natural colour.

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