Whisky Review #309 Benromach 1978 Rare Malts 63.8%

benromach1978Distilled: 1978, bottled: 1998

On the nose: Sweet. Malt, heavy honey and a pinch of salt. Some charred wood in the background. Some red fruits as well, plums in particular. I’m also getting apples, strawberries, mint and melons. Hints of cookie dough as well. Water brings out oranges, wet sand and dusty oak. Slightly sugary.

On the palate: Oooh, this is strong. Getting oranges, orange sweets, malt and honey. More viscosity with water. And more fruit, without me being able to be more specific.  The finish, however, is sweet and malty with camphory notes. Water brings out more oranges as well as a subtle spicyness. Light and floral peppery notes.

A decent whisky, but a bit too textbooky in my opinion. It gets boring after a while. Also, there’s no traces of peat here, as opposed to the contemporary bottlings I’ve tried from Benromach.

84/100 points

(Thanks to Ivar for the sample!)

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Whisky Review #308 Cooley 21 yo / Cadenhead’s World Whiskies 56.3%

cooley21Drawn from a bourbon barrel with an outturn of 210 bottles.

Distilled: 1992, bottled: 2013

On the nose: Yum! Honey sweetness, some fresh wood, earth and lamp oil. Some lemon rind as well. And dried fruits(papaya, mango ect.) More fruit with water, but they’re not dried now. Red apples, bananas and pears. Some vanilla and heather. More and more lemon rind with time.

On the palate: Oily and citric(think lemon oil). Slightly herbal with wood sap and dandelion leaves. Crisper with water. Green apples, gooseberries and grass. Some spicy wood and grass in the finish as well. Long and lovely. Slightly bitter with a hints of ash and herbs. More lemon rind and lemon oil with water.

Needless to say, this is quite citric stuff. I like it. Although it says it’s peated on the label, I’m not getting too much of that.

87/100 points

(And thanks to Håvard fro the sample!)

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Jamaica 1982 “Flying” no.11 / Ian Macleod for Juuls Vin & Spiritus 61.6%

jamaica82One more, just for fun. This 30 year old single cask was bottled in 2013 by Ian Macleod for Juuls Vin & Spritis in Copenhagen. Drawn from a bourbon barrel(#16), with an outturn of 186 bottles.

On the nose: Very herbal, with a hint of salt licorice. Some chocolate, toffee, green grass, burnt hay and raspberry sweets. Getting vanilla, butter, cinnamon, caramel and coffee beans with water added.

On the palate: Very floral. Honey, black tea, sweet grass, wine gums, oak, lime and cocoa. More citrus with water. Very zesty stuff. Orange peel and unripe plums. The finish is still quite floral with lightly roasted coffee beans. Green pepper, fresh wood sap and grass with water.

An extreme rum, for sure. Very green and floral.

89/100 points

(Thanks to Håvard for the sample!)

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Origenes Reserva Don Pancho 30 yo 40%

origenes30Another rum. This time, a Panamanian one.

Bottled: +/-2013

Bottle no.: 201

On the nose: Brown sugar, oak, dark syrup, toffee and bananas. Some chocolate and canned tropical fruits as well. Very rich. Hints of sweet licorice with time. Cookie dough is coming through with water added. Even a hint of soy sauce can be found lurking in the background of it all.

On the palate: Sweet and mellow with wood sap, syrup, oak and candied almonds. Some dry cocoa and marzipan also. Well balanced. Some camphor sweets with water. The finish has burnt sugar and wood varnish. Slightly nutty. And rather long.

Delicious and quite complex stuff. Works well at 40 ABV also. Very entertaining.

90/100 points

(Thanks to Håvard for the sample!)

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Whisky Review #307 Tomatin 35 yo Cadenhead’s Small Batch 44.1%

tomatin35Distilled: 1978, bottled: 2013

Matured in bourbon hogsheads. 594 bottles.

On the nose: Woah, this is different. Wet sawdust and papaya is what I’m getting initially. Some fresh, unlit tobacco also. Oak, yellow plums and red apples. Green grass, eucalyptus and light malt with water.

On the palate: Fruity! Kiwi, melons, green grapes, lime, gooseberries and apples. Subtle oak and camphor in the background. Juicier mouthfeel with water. Fructose, vanilla and pears. The finish is also very fruity with  hints of green tea, camphor, green twigs and oak. More sugary(fructose-y?) with water.

This is, in my opinion, the very epitome of well balanced whisky.

94/100 points

(Thanks to Håvard for the sample!)

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Whisky Review #306 Benriach 16 yo Tawny Port Finish 55.8%

benriach98tawnyDistilled: 1998, bottled: 2014

Cask #7580

Bottle no. 707/781

On the nose: Brown sugar and greasy cinnamon buns. Some toffee and dry grass also. Quite sweet and gentle. Subtle hints of coriander. Water brings out more buttery toffee, homemade style. Marzipan, pears and green grapes. Fresh and green.

On the palate: Sweet and syrupy. Dark toffee and wood sap. Very soft in the mouth, considering the ABV. Some citrus(sweet oranges, sweet lime ect.) with water added. And some burnt sugar. Subtle spices and oak in the finish. More oak with time. Maple syrup and wood varnish with water.

Delicious. Not a big whisky, but a fascinating one. The character changes dramatically with water added.

87/100 points

(Thanks to Tor for the sample!)

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Whisky Review #305 Singleton Of Dufftown 12 yo 40%

singletonofduff12Bottled: +/- 2012

On the nose: Subtle honey, pear, pale malt and some cereals. Light and sweet. Hints of apples and fresh green twigs with water added.

On the palate: Sweet and malty. Quite thin and watery. Green apples, baked apples and syrup. Some honey with water. The finish is sweet as well, with dry grass and subtle oaky notes. More oak and spicyness with water. Slightly drier.

No off notes, but it’s just too thin and bland to be anything but boring.

78/100 points

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Whisky Review #304 Hellyers Road ‘Peated’ 46.2%

hellyersPeated single malt whisky from down under. Sounds intriguing, doesn’t it?

Bottled: +/- 2014

On the nose: Sour smoke, salt peanuts in caramel, grass, lemons and spearmint. A slightly metallic note also. Green bitter herbs, dandelion and rocket salad. More maritime with water. Sea spray and such. Water brings out more citrus and a hint of mint. Fresh coriander as well. A bit soapy and perfumey.

On the palate: Ash, smoke(the sort of smoke you get from burning old newspapers), salt, seaweed, wet grass and unripe apples. Some lime with a drop of water. A bit soapy here as well. Slightly floral. The finish is maritime and salt, with sweet smoke, chocolate and tingly oak spices. Some wood sap with water.

A very interesting contribution to the world whisky scene. Looking forward to try more from them(they just released a 12 yo).

85/100 points

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Whisky Review #303 Glenfarclas 21 yo 43%

gf21Bottled: +/- 2014

On the nose: Sweet. Dried fruits, leather, blackberries, blackcurrants and old dusty wood(think old dusty treasure chest you’ve found in your grandma’s attic). Some strawberries as well. Very fruity. Vanilla pods and oranges. Honey and melons(cantaloupe, honeydew ect.) with water. More oranges as well.

On the palate: Light spices, oak and sweet sherry. Light and well balanced. Dark berries, dark chocolate and coffee. Malt and toffee with water. Some cardamom also, I think. The finish has malt sweetness, dusty oak and cocoa. More dust and charred wood with water.

Not a sherry bomb per se, it’s more subtle than that. When I first opened the bottle it had some unpleasant sulphury notes, on the nose especially, but as I’ve worked my way through the bottle it’s seemed to disappear more and more. All in all very good stuff. I’ll probably buy another bottle…

86/100 points

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Whisky Review #302 Caol Ila 1978 Rare Malts 61.7%

caolilarmDistilled: 1978, bottled: 2002.

On the nose: Salt and slightly mineraly. Light puffs of smoke. Grass, lemon rind and sweet malt. Some spearmint and white chocolate after 10 minutes in the glass. Fruitier with water. Mango, peaches and blood oranges.

On the palate: Definitely more peat smoke here. Quite ashy. Juicy citrus and sea spray. Rather sweet and fruity after some time. The mouthfeel becomes more oily with water. More smoke and pepper as well. Some floral notes as well. The finish has salt, ashes, smoke, toasted oak and freshly cut grass. More wood, salt and ash with water.

Brilliant! Natural and delicious stuff. Just remember to give it some time(and a drop of water) in the glass.

88/100 points

(Thanks to Ivar for the sample!)

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