Kategoriarkiv: Speyside

Mortlach 12 YO – The Wee Witchie

ABV: 43.4 %
Origin: Speyside
Type: Single Malt
Bottles in collection: 1
Emptied bottles: 0
Impression: 4/5

Tasting notes
Nose: This is fruity, sweet and floral. There’s honey on top of green apples, ripe green grapes and some fresh red berries. There’s a tiny hint of menthol. Vanilla and some liquorice comes through after a while in the glass. There’s an earthy note of dry soil sitting in the back together with dust and some heather. A savory note sits in the heart of everything making it quite complex but still very clean and easy on the nose.

Mouth: It starts out honey sweet and spicy. The fruitiness rolls in like a wave with the ripe green grapes in front, but now there’s some darker dried fruits in the mix. The oak arrives pretty early and brings a nice bitterness. There’s walnuts, dust and the savory note is still found in the middle of everything.

Finish: This goes immediatly to the oak. It’s grey weathered oak planks and walnuts. The heather and the dry soil come back for a couple of seconds. The savory note keeps on making appearances and there’s now a hint of peaches peeking through the oakiness. It’s not astringent, but it is somewhat dry on the toungue. The spicyness follows along.

Additional information
”Wee witchie” comes from the nickname of the smallest still in the Mortlach distillery. This 12 YO was first released in 2018. It’s distilled 2.81 times and aged in both american ex-bourbon barrels and european ex-sherry casks.

Glen Grant 12 YO

ABV: 43 %
Origin: Speyside
Type: Single malt
Bottles in collection: 0
Emptied bottles: 1
Impression: 4/5

Tasting notes
Nose: This is sweet and fruity. At first there’s a ripe red apple fruitiness together with a malty base and a coating of vanilla and honey. There’s also a fresher fruitiness surrounding the core. It’s very dessert-like and there are some baking spices floating around somewhere inside. It feels very homogenous and everything lies close to the core. With time a marzipan note start to emerge around the edges of the glass. This is a very pleasant nose. It isn’t complex but delivers the profile without flaws.

Mouth: It starts out with lemons and oranges on the edges and a rich malty core with vanilla, honey and red ripe apples in the center. It’s got a nice texture and feels ”larger” than on the nose. After a few seconds the outside fruitiness turns slightly bitter and creates an orange peel note. A hint of baking spices are in there as well and it still feels like a dessert, but it’s not too sweet.

Finish: The finish starts the same way as the mouth with a nice orange peel fruitiness exploding around the palate before the sweet honey and vanilla returns in the center. It’s less malty and more fruity and it stays that way all the way through. The only shift is when the oakiness start to come through, which is fashionably late. It’s a nice aged wood oakiness with a hint of mixed nuts. The fruitiness follows along all the way through. This is a great whisky. It’s not complex nor an explorer’s whisky, but as an easy sipper it’s a perfect background whisky.

Additional information
The cask type isn’t stated anywhere but the taste profile suggests ex-bourbon american white oak. There is another version of this whisky which is only sold in travel retail, but that one is unchillfiltered and the ABV is 48 %.

Cragganmore Distiller’s Edition 2005/2017

ABV: 40 %
Origin: Speyside
Type: Single Malt
Bottles in collection: 1
Emptied bottles: 0
Impression: 3/5

Tasting notes
Nose: This is Sweet and very fruity. There are raspberries and strawberries, a hint of liquorice, vanilla, sweet white wine, oak. Citrus fruits, a mix of oranges and lemons are surrounding the edges.

Mouth: Vanilla, a funky ripe berries note, malt, a hint of caramel. A very smooth mouthfeel.

Finish: A very nice, finish with dark fruits mixed with oak, The oak eventually takes over and brings a nutty touch with hazelnuts and walnuts which makes the tail somewhat dry.

Additional information
The Distiller’s Edition is a limited yearly release of the Diageo series ”The classic malts of Scotland” finished in special ways. This is matured in american ex-bourbon barrels and finished in port pipes.

Cardhu Gold Reserve – Game of Thrones House Targaryen

ABV: 40 %
Origin: Speyside
Type: Single Malt
Bottles in collection: 0
Emptied bottles: 0
Impression: 2/5

Tasting notes
Nose: This is sweet and slightly fruity. Honey, vanilla and toffee are sitting on top of some baked red apples. It’s very mild and nothing really pops from the glass. It’s dusty and there’s just a hint of oak in the back. The toffee note moves forward with time in the glass. It’s very rounded around the edges even if it has a youthness sitting in the back, which manifests as a thin metallic note.

Mouth: A very sweet start with honey and a lemon note quickly passing by. It stays very sweet for a long time with vanilla and toffee slowly moving forward. There’s a white pepper spicyness, but it never really amounts to anything. When it finally sets some of the sweetness aside it slowly reveals a slightly bitter oak, but it just stays in the back. It’s still extremely mild and round like a marble.

Finish: The finish is just a continuation of the sweet and mild parade. A few seconds of honey, vanilla and toffee goes by before it lands in a bland oakiness. It’s a little dusty, but otherwise laid back and it feels like it doesn’t want to be noticed. The toasted flavours do come through though, but they do not do much to create anything. This is too mild and too well rounded to be interesting. It’s definitely a good dram if someone needs an introduction into scotch.

Additional information
The Gold Reserve was first released in 2014 for the european market and they now use the same whisky as a GoT special release. It’s aged in toasted oak barrels.

Glenfarclas 15 YO

ABV: 46 %
Origin: Speyside
Type: Single Malt
Bottles in collection: 0
Emptied bottles: 0
Impression: 4/5

Tasting notes
Nose: This is vanilla and dried fruits. At first a layer of vanilla and dried exotic fruits sit beneath a thin veil of menthol. There’s a fresh lemon and peach note as well. It becomes fruitier with time in the glass. There is a tiny hint of salty caramel in the background. There is a sweeter side to it as well, like an icing sugar on top of a fruit cake. This is a very pleasant nose.

Mouth: It starts out with a darker fruitiness with raisins and overripe plums. There is a clear sulfur note sitting in the back. It’s oily and the lemon is still detectable. The dried exotic fruits are still in there, as well as the vanilla, but they are not especially pronounced. The salty caramel note is completely gone. There is a speck of dust in the middle and as well as a honey sweetness. It gets somewhat spicy after a few seconds.

Finish: A mix of both dark and dried fruits flare up together with the menthol. When it settles it reveals the sulfur as well as a savory note. It then switches over to the oakiness, which is a nice dry, slightly bitter oak with notes of coffee and hazelnuts. The sherry notes stay as a top layer throughout the long oak finish. There is a hint of smoke coming through in the late finish. This is a liquid fruit cake, and a great whisky.

Additional information
The Glenfarclas 15 YO is aged in european ex-Oloroso sherry casks. It’s lightly peated with 4 PPM. It’s unchillfiltered and has natural colour.

Tamnavulin Red Wine Cask Edition – Cabernet Sauvignon

ABV: 40 %
Origin: Speyside
Type: Single Malt
Bottles in collection: 0
Emptied bottles: 0
Impression: 3/5

Tasting notes
Sample added to queue. Tasting notes pending.

See the queue here.

Additional information
This is a single malt first aged in american ex-bourbon casks and then finished in Cabernet Sauvignon red wine casks. There is no information on aging time. This bottle is from batch 001243.

Tamnavulin Red Wine Cask Edition – Grenache

ABV: 40 %
Origin: Speyside
Type: Single Malt
Bottles in collection: 0
Emptied bottles: 0
Impression: 3/5

Tasting notes
Nose: This is mixed fruits and butterscotch. At first there’s a bright and slightly pointy fruitiness hitting the nose. Behind that there are notes of oranges, red fruits and butterscotch. A cooling mint is hovering above everything else. With time in the glass the red wine berries start to be more detectable as a single entity. This is a very approachable and quite fantastic nose.

Mouth: It starts out very sour. There’s a big layer of lemons sitting on the outside. In the center there’s a mix of butterscotch and ripe red grapes together with grey oak planks. There’s also a coffee bitterness. It feels quite young and a little bit prickly on the tongue. It becomes honey sweet after a few seconds.

Finish: A honey sweetness fills the mouth and it is soon joined by a butterscotch note. The ripe red fruitiness comes through almost as a part of the butterscotch. The lemon sourness is not as pronounced in the finish but it still creates a layer surrounding everything else. The oakiness is still dry and brings the mind towards dry grey oak planks. This is a good whisky with a fantastic nose.

Additional information
This is a single malt first aged in american ex-bourbon casks and then finished in Grenache red wine casks. There is no information on aging time. This bottle is from batch 001075.

Glenfarclas 12 YO

ABV: 43 %
Origin: Speyside
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 layer of vanilla and honey on top and sweet liqeuer-soaked red berries in the back. There’s a hint of dry smoke floating around as well as hint of sulfur which together create a nice, slightly gritty background. With time the fruitiness settles and the honey becomes the top note. A mix of lemon and ginger can be found in the back. This is a pretty straight forward sherried nose with a nice array of sensations to discover.

Mouth: It starts out with lemon and honey. It then becomes malty and the sherry fruitiness starts to emerge around the edges with raisins and overripe plums within. There’s a dusty texture to it and the smoke and sulfur is still creating a nice gritty background noise. There’s also a good amount of wood spices coming through as well as a hint of the oakiness itself.

Finish: It starts out quite spicy and it feels potent despite the low ABV. The lemon and honey do come through around the edges quite early. When it settles it a nice complex mix of everything emerges. The sherry notes, vanilla, malt, ginger, smoke and sulfur are all fighting for attention in the center of the palate. This leaves room for the oakiness to come through in the surroundings. It’s a very nice oakiness with a lot of hazelnuts within. This is a great whisky which produces a lot of flavours despite the low ABV. It rewards both the explorer and the occasional drinker.

Additional information
The 12 YO was originally intended to be a travel retail exclusive but it’s now part of the distillery’s core range. It’s aged in ex-Oloroso and ex-Fino sherry casks for the entire aging period.

The Singleton of Dufftown 12 YO

ABV: 40 %
Origin: Speyside
Type: Single Malt
Bottles in collection: 0
Emptied bottles: 1
Impression: 3/5

Tasting notes
Nose: This is sweet and fruity. Juicy pears and a mild butterscotch are first to present themselves. There is a slight spicyness floating around but it’s not protruding in any way. There are honey and vanilla notes deep down underneath together with a speck of dust. After some time in the glass it gets maltier and the fruitiness changes towards dried apricots. This is a nice and easy nose, but a bit too mild and uneventful.

Mouth: It starts out a bit watery and then the butterscotch sweetness takes lead. After a few seconds it becomes malty and the fruitiness returns. It’s now assorted dried fruits with a lemon note in the background. The oakiness creates a very thin layer surrounding everything. It’s a dry, slightly spicy and bitter oakiness. With patience the dried fruits turns into a feint tropical fruitiness. It’s richer in taste than on the nose.

Finish: There is a small window where the fruitiness comes through before the spotlight turns towards the oak. Vanilla lies on top and there’s a spicy quite bitter note underneath. It doesn’t take long before the oakiness completely takes over and now with its bitter side up front. It’s almost too bitter in the end. There’s a small walnut note coming through and maybe some very dark chocolate. This is a good, solid speysider with a twist in the end.

Additional information
This whisky is matured in both ex-bourbon american oak barrels and ”a high percentage” of ex-sherry european oak casks. This is one of the main components in Bell’s Blended Whisky.

The Balvenie 12 YO – Triple Cask

ABV: 40 %
Origin: Speyside
Type: Single Malt
Bottles in collection: 1
Emptied bottles: 0
Impression: 4/5

Tasting notes
Nose: This is sweet and very fruity. A big bowl of yellow pears, grapes and oranges with vanilla cream and a touch of honey on top. It’s a very fresh and vibrant nose. As time passes the sweetness move forward and a small bitter note comes through. The oranges together with the sweetness and the bitterness create a marmelade note. Some apricots are also coming through as well as a thin layer of menthol. The oakiness can be found within the vanilla note, but it takes a few minutes in the glass.

Mouth: The orange marmelade is dominating the palate together with apricots and honey. A touch of spicyness is present but it never really amount to anything special. The oak comes through pretty fast with vanilla, coffee and a feint nuttiness in the back. A distant note of black liquorice resides in the back and sort of adds another dimension to the palate. There’s no astringency and it’s a very juicy dram.

Finish: An immidiate oakiness brings a great freshly brewed coffee note. The fruitiness comes slowly and builds up over time, but the oak is just too strong to let it through completely. It’s a very nice and fresh oakiness with just the perfect amount of coffee and a touch of hazelnuts. The thin layer of menthol returns and creates a very nice aura surrounding the finish. There’s still no astringency even after a few sips. This is a well balanced and flavourful whisky.

Additional information
The 12 YO Triple Cask was released in 2013 as the entry level malt in Balvenie’s travel retail range. It’s aged in three different cask types individually; First fill and refill american ex-bourbon oak barrels and first fill ex-Oloroso sherry casks. It’s then married together in a tun.

The Macallan 12 YO – Double Cask

ABV: 40 %
Origin: Speyside
Type: Single malt
Bottles in collection: 0
Emptied bottles: 0
Impression: 3/5

Tasting notes
Nose: This is sweet and fruity. At first there’s a layer of honey and vanilla sitting on top of fresh red berries. When it settles both cinnamon and a hint of sweet liquorice arrive. There’s a nice balance between the sweetness and the fruitiness. It’s mild and not especially complex. After some time in the glass the fruitiness shifts towards dried assorted fruits with Raisins as well as dried coconut flakes. This is a straight forward nose with a lot of nice things within.

Mouth: It starts out a bit flat for a second or two before a mild spicyness builds up. The oak is present in the background from the get-go as well. The fruitiness is much darker compared to the nose with a heavy emphasis on raisins and overripe plums. There are still notes of cinnamon and vanilla and it feels very dessert-like. There’s a fresher fruitiness peeking through from behind but it takes a few seconds before it’s noticable. It doesn’t feel as balanced as on the nose and it feels like the different components never interacts with each other.

Finish: The sherry fruitiness starts out around the edges and the center part feels sort of empty. The fruitiness then moves towards the center to make room for the oakiness around the edges. There’s a hint of orange marmelade coming through as well as raisins and figs. It’s a fresher fruitiness than before. The oakiness is a bit indecisive, with a mix of fresh vanilla and sligthly nutty and bitter oak. There’s a slight spicyness coming from the oak as well. This is a good whisky but it lacks power and feels a bit unbalanced to the taste.

Additional information
This expression from Macallan is matured in a combination of American and European oak for at least 12 years. The american oak casks are also ex-Sherry and haven’t contained any bourbon.

Mortlach 16 YO – Distiller’s Dram

ABV: 43.4 %
Origin: Speyside
Type: Single Malt
Bottles in collection: 1
Emptied bottles: 0
Impression: 4/5

Tasting notes
Nose: This is rich and fruity. At first there are dark and dried fruits overpowering everything else. There are raisins, dades, prunes and a dried tropical fruit mix with pineapples and nectarines. After a few second a top layer forms with oak, vanilla and a sprinkle of dust. It feels very thick and it almost feels savory behind the fruity exterior. This is a fruitcake whisky and there are baking spices coming through to accentuate that. This is a lovely nose, but it lacks a tiny bit of depth.

Mouth: It starts out with a sweet and malty core and a fruity outer layer. The dried tropical fruits remain, but they are more integrated in the sweet core with vanilla and honey. The darker fruit notes have moves towards the edges where they interact with notes which could be described as leather-bound books on a dusty shelf. There is a hint of butterscotch coming through for those who are patient. The spices are more and more leaning towards cinnamon.

Finish: The first thing to pop up is the leather-bound books and dust. There’s now also a hint of tobacco. Inside it’s now a much fresher fruitiness with the dried tropical fruit mix very much in focus. It stays like that until the oakiness arrives. It’s a dry and quite pleasant oakiness which isn’t making a big impact, but brings a soft nuttiness and a mild bitterness to the otherwise fruity finish. This is really a great whisky, but all the flavours feels like they are sitting close to the front and it leaves a slightly empty space in the background.

Additional information
This ”Distiller’s dram” is a part of the Mortlach core range. It was released in 2018. It’s aged in a mix of first fill and refill ex-sherry casks.

Glenlivet 12 YO – Illicit Still

ABV: 48 %
Origin: Speyside
Type: Single Malt
Bottles in collection: 0
Emptied bottles: 0
Impression: 4/5

Tasting notes
Nose: This is fruity and floral. At first there’s a thick layer of red apples, vanilla and marzipan. On top there’s a cloud of menthol and flowers. There’s a honey sweetness starting out in the back but then moves forward on the edges as time goes by in the glass. There’s a sweet liquorice note coming through as well. Overall it feels very rich and mild without any sharp or pointy edges. This is a fairly straight forward nose but it’s very pleasant and welcoming.

Mouth: It starts out with a lemon note in the back and a sweet maltiness up front. The fruity and floral elements are still in there but they are reduced and have left the spotlight. It’s a sweet and sour mix with a bitter tang in the back. It’s quite mild even though it presents a slight ABV spicyness after a few seconds. It’s just as sweet as on the nose and there’s nothing especially interesting happening at this point except for the sweetness moving forward a bit.

Finish: The honey sweetness flare up out on the edges before the center core starts to come through. Here the apples and the floral notes return as well as the maltiness. It’s still mild with a soft layer of menthol hovering above everything else. It stays consistant for quite a while before everything dies down and leave room for the oakiness. It’s a nice enough oak but it’s quite generic. In the tail end of the finish the marzipan note makes a quick revisit. This is a great whisky with a lot of nice flavours. It’s not a whisky to explore, it’s a whisky to enjoy.

Additional information
This is the first release from ”The Original Stories” series. It’s matured for in a mix of ex-bourbon barrels and european ex-sherry casks. It’s unchillfiltered.

Tomintoul With a Peaty Tang

ABV: 40 %
Origin: Speyside
Type: Single Malt
Bottles in collection: 0
Emptied bottles: 1
Impression: 3/5

Tasting notes
Nose: This is sweet and peaty. At first there’s a pleasant mix of butterscotch, vanilla and a toned down savory peat smoke coming through as a cohesive center. When the initial impact resides a hint of marzipan and a slightly metallic note is also detectable. It feels young and slightly harsh. The butterscotch note increases in intensity over time. This is a decent nose for a budget whisky.

Taste: It starts out very mild and approachable with the sweetness, with notes of honey, butter and toffee as the most prominent feature. There’s also fresh oak and a heathery peat layer that covers the mouth. Some oak spices show up after a short while and bring some walnuts along. It’s still coming through as quite young.

Finish: A very mild mint develops over the sweetness. Some assorted green fruits shows up quite unexpectedly underneath. The vanilla and butterscotch notes follow along but die rather quickly. A hint of bitterness shows up in late in the finish together with the oakiness. It’s a short finish with a mild floral peat note lingering when everything else disappears. This is a decent budget whisky. It’s a bit flat and uneventful but There are som nice flavours presented.

Additional information
The peaty tang is a mix between 6 YO peated whisky (55ppm) and older unpeated whiskies. It’s matured in refill ex-bourbon barrels.

Glenfiddich 15 YO – Unique Solera Reserve

ABV: 40 %
Origin: Speyside
Type: Single Malt
Bottles in collection: 0
Emptied bottles: 1
Impression: 3/5

Tasting notes
Nose: This is very fruity and sweet. Baked red apples and honey create a core with ripe bananas and a hint of flowers surrounding it. A layer of aromatic oak sits in the back creating a nice richness to it. There’s also a vanilla note somewhere in between. The age shows with a nice hint of dustiness and well-rounded distillate. A sour lemon note can be found somewhere in the background.

Mouth: It starts out honey sweet with some dustiness within. It soon turns towards a slightly more bitter character and astringent dry oakiness comes through before the fruitiness kicks in. A bit of spicyness comes through together with baked red apples with cinnamon and toffee. The oakiness brings some coffee and hazelnuts.

Finish: The oak is very up front from the get-go. It’s very aromatic and dry. A spicy note hits the tip of the toungue before the sweetness and fruitiness come through. Apples, cinnamon, vanilla and toffee are all found once again. The oak is still very much in focus. It still delivers notes of hazelnuts and coffee. It’s astringent, especially after a few sips. Far down the finish a hint of anise appears. This is an easy sipper and a dessert in a glass.

Additional information
The Glenfiddich 15 YO is aged in european ex-sherry casks, first fill, and refill american ex-bourbon barrels. It is then married together in a 50 000 liter big solera vatting tun that is never emptied below the halfway point.

GlenRothes Robur Reserve

ABV: 40 %
Origin: Speyside
Type: Single malt
Bottles in collection: 0
Emptied bottles: 0
Impression: 3/5

Tasting notes
Nose: This is sweet and fruity. At first there are a lot of vanilla, red berries and oranges. Just underneath lies a thin layer of darker ripe plums and raisins. There’s also a floral note somewhere in between. It’s got a light character with a minty note on top but there’s a slightly complex sulfur and malt note coming from the background which gives it a nice three-dimensional character, but it’s fighting against a younger distillate with some sharp egdes to it. This is a nice nose overall. It feels a bit rough around the edges though.

Mouth: It starts out with a mild vanilla and malt sweetness on top with dried fruits and a hint of sulfur in the back. The fresher fruits have taken a step back, but there is a hint of orange peel and lemon in the back. It’s very round, easy to approach and gives a nice setting for the sherry cask notes which at this point covers the slight harshness of the somewhat young distillate.

Finish: The initial impact is a bit too mild and weak. It takes a second before the malt and the vanilla starts to awaken and for the fruitiness to return. The fruitiness is now spreading out in the background with mainly an orange peel fruity bitter note. It co-exists with a nice nutty oakiness and a slightly savory note in the back. The oakiness slowly moves forwards and the late finish is very nice. This is a good whisky with a lot to offer despite the low ABV. It ought to be a good introduction to sherried whiskies.

Additional information
The Robur Reserve is a travel retail exclusive release. It’s been aged in first fill european ex-Oloroso sherry casks for an undisclosed amount of time.

AnCnoc Sherry Cask Finish – Peated Edition

ABV: 40 %
Origin:
Highlands
Type:
Single Malt
Bottles in collection:
0
Emptied bottles:
1
Impression:
3/5

Tasting notes
Nose: This is mild peat and dried fruits. At first there’s a mix of fruits with a sour baseline and top notes of dark berries and dried fruits. Close behind is a mild smokiness with tobacco and a hint of leather. There’s also a generic sweetness mostly connected to the fruitiness. A hint of vanilla creates a thin line through everything. The sweetness moves foward and becomes honey with time in the glass. There’s also a menthol cloud above everything else. It feels very shallow and there’s a lack of background notes. It’s a nice nose but everything is presented up front as if it’s trying to hide something underneath.

Mouth: It starts out with a sweetness up front, a bitterness in the middle and a metallic sour note in the back. It’s very mild but a spicyness do show up after a few seconds. There’s a slight sprinkle of dust and a cardboard note within which is less than pleasant. The bitterness becomes louder as the peat and fruits move to the sides. It’s still a mild peatiness and a handful of dried assorted fruits. The bitterness seems to be generic, but it’s closer to coffee and cocoa than a bitter nuttiness. There’s a butterscotch note showing up in the mix, but it takes a while to arrive.

Finish: The peat and fruits stay at the sides during the transition and the sweetness goes away then shows up again together with the butterscotch. It’s now a bit further back than before. There’s still a metallic note in the back and the bitterness in the center. As the oakiness start to take over it merges with the bitter notes and create a nice enough oakiness. It’s not a long finish and in the end it’s just a dry oakiness and a metallic note left in the mouth. This is a budget whisky and it feels like the sherry cask finish is there to do a cover-up. It will work just fine as a background dram, but falls short when scrutinized.

Additional information
This whisky is made at the Knockdhu distillery. It’s matured in american oak casks and finished in ex-sherry butts. This is exclusive to the swedish market.

Glen Moray Elgin Classic – Peated Single Malt

ABV: 40 %
Origin: Speyside
Type: Single Malt
Bottles in collection: 0
Emptied bottles: 1
Impression: 2/5

Tasting notes
Nose: This is fresh fruits and peat. The first impact is a wet peatiness with notes of fresh grass and heather together with a red apple fruitiness. Behind the peat there’s a young and rather unpleasant spirit note with a cardboard feel to it. It brings notes of green apples, chalk and with time toffee builds up in the center as well as a honey sweetness. This is not a great nose. it’s young, spirit driven and a bit flat.

Mouth: At first there’s a generic butterscotch note coming through as well as a young, rather unpleasant distillate. After a short while the peatiness starts to take over the whole center of the palate. It’s a bit metallic and it’s got a mineral side to it. It’s also floral with heather as a main note. The honey sweetness and a tiny black pepper spicyness start to come through as well as sweet liquorice. There’s also a feint fresh fruitiness with apples and bitter lemon in the background.

Finish: There’s a small gap where most of the flavours dip, but when they return it’s with the minerals and a mild black pepper. After a short visit from the honey sweetness and the peat, the finish just about crashes and leaves a very fresh oak note. The peat and some liquorice return for a short background visit. It’s somewhat metallic throughout. This is a so and so budget whisky. It lacks complexity and refinement but it’s a decent quality for the money.

Additional information
This was released in 2015 and is a part of Glen Moray’s core range. It’s aged for about 7 years in american ex-bourbon barrels. The peat level is about 15-20 ppm.

The Balvenie 12 YO – DoubleWood

ABV: 40 %
Origin: Speyside
Type: Single malt
Bottles in collection: 1
Emptied bottles: 0
Impression: 4/5

Tasting notes
Nose: This is fruity and sweet. There’s oranges, both the juice and the peel, together with honey and vanilla. It’s pretty laid back and very easy on the nose. After a while some green apples and pears join the fruity side and a soothing menthol lies as a thin layer over the fruits. There’s a small hint of cinnamon on top of the fruits and maybe just a hint of white chocolate. This is not very complex but still very pleasant on the nose.

Mouth: The honey comes first and then a touch of spicyness. There’s an immediate bitterness that comes through together with the fruitiness. It’s orange peel and oak together with vanilla and a speck of dust. The cinnamon is in there as well as a butterscotch note which appears after a few seconds. There’s a small hint of darker fruits well hidden in the background. There’s no astringency and it’s got a nice feel to it overall.

Finish: There’s a small dip in flavour at first, then the orange peel and the oak come back into focus. There are red berries and dried fruits coming through but they never take over. The oakiness is dusty with a touch of bitterness. The honey and vanilla are now long gone. There’s a coffee note, but mainly there’s just a grey weathered oak feel to it. In the tail end the oranges reappears together with a small rye note and gives it a nice send off. This is a good entry level single malt.

Additional information
Released in 1993, this is one of the first wine finished whiskies made. It’s matured for 12 years in second and third fill american ex-bourbon oak barrels and then finished in first fill spanish ex-Oloroso sherry butts for 9 months.

Knockando 15 YO – Vintage 1999

ABV: 43 %
Origin: Speyside
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 mix of sweet liquorice, fruits and vanilla with a minty freshness on top. The fruitiness is a mix of green apples and ripe berries with an emphasis on the apples. There’s also a gentle oakiness which sits along the edges of the glass surrounding everything else. A hint of dusty old books can be found but it’s well hidden in the background. With time in the glass it becomes a bit sweeter and a honey note starts to emerge. This is a nice nose with plenty of things to discover.

Mouth: It starts out very mild, sweet and malty. After a few seconds a ripe fruitiness comes through as well as a mild black pepper. There’s a floral undertone and a vanilla and honey background. It’s got a nice texture to it and there’s a nice richness overall. The oakiness is present but it lets the other flavours shine. There’s also a pinch of salt somewhere in the middle. The fruitiness is very hard to pinpoint and it feels like a basket of assorted fresh fruits with some ripe berries on top.

Finish: The minty freshness return from the start of the finish as well as the malty and sweet core. The fruitiness is still a mixed bag of different varieties. The old books comes through as well as the oakiness and the vanilla. There’s also a feint marzipan sweetness within. In the late finish all the flavours slowly fade except for the oakiness which stays constant throughout. It a nice oakiness with a nutty character without being bitter or protruding. There’s also a savory note which lingers in the background. This is a very nice whisky which never gets boring.

Additional information
This expression is part of the Knockando core range and it’s aged in european ex-sherry casks and american refill ex-bourbon barrels.