Showing posts with label Blended Malt Scotch Whisky Review. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Blended Malt Scotch Whisky Review. Show all posts

Stratheden (Lost Distillery Company)


 “I Don’t Love It But I Think I Like It”


Whisky Review # 979

Country: Scotland ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ณ๓ ฃ๓ ด๓ ฟ
Region: Border Lowlands/Southern Highlands
Brand:  Stratheden - Classic Selection - Styled on long closed distilleries
Bottled and Blended by: The Lost Distillery Company, Kilmarnock
Type: Blended Malt Scotch Whisky
Age: NAS
Alcohol By Volume (ABV): 43%
Maturation: Unknown. Probably mostly Ex-Bourbon casks & some Sherried Wood
Chill Filtration: No
Price Average: US$ 55 (February 2023)
Price/Quality Ratio: ๐Ÿ‘
Buying Advice: ๐Ÿ˜ It's okay. I think you should go for the more mature expressions

Colour: Golden Sunlight (Natural Colour)

Nose:

Light, Young, a little Edgy and mostly Sweet. Lots of Bakery Aromas with some Peat and Smoke in the background. I would like to try the more mature versions of this Malt being The Archivist Selection and The Vintage Selection. They should be quite nice. The Nose of this Classic Selection is not bad but a bit Young and Immature.

Main Aromas:

Sweet Barley, Salted Caramel, Puff Pastry with Warm Apple and Pear Filling, Soft Peat, Smoke from a Distant Fire, Grass and Hay, Orange-Flavored Chocolate, Dusty Wood, Cinnamon and Ginger. 

Supportive Aroma Accents:

Toffee, Buttered Toast, Vanilla, Floral & Green Notes, Tropical Fruitcake (Pineapple, Mango, Sultana), Lemon Peel, Toasted Nuts, Tobacco, Leather, Wet Newspaper and Pepper.


Palate:

Light, Young and slightly Thin but Oily at the same time. The Alcohol is noticeable at this point. It's a little Rougher than the Nose would suggest. The Palate is a mix of Sweet, Sour and Salty notes. Only a slight Bitterness here.

Main Flavours:

Malted Barley, Salted Caramel, Grass and Straw, Seville Orange, Lemon, Grapefruit, Green Apple, Orange-Flavored Chocolate, Dusty Wood, Soft Peat, Factory Smoke, Pepper, Ginger, Menthol/Mint and Tobacco.

Supportive Flavour Accents:

Vanilla, Honey, Toffee, Toasted Nuts, Floral and Green Notes, Mandarin, Tropical Fruitcake (Banana, Pineapple, Sultana, Mango), Wet Rocks and Sand, Cinnamon & Iron.
     

Finish:

Short-Middle Long and slightly Hot. Sweet at first but showing Sour and Salty notes towards the Medium-Dry to Dry end. I find Sweet Barley, Salted Caramel, Vanilla, Honey, Seville Orange, Grapefruit, Lemon, Honey, Hard Candy (Berry Flavor), Wet Peat, Factory Smoke, Ashes, Wet Rocks & Sand, Red Apple, Tobacco, Pepper, Mint and Cinnamon. Traces of Chocolate and Iron. 

Drinking Advice
:


This Stratheden does not improve with added Water.

Rating: 7.5 (*******1/2)

Nose: 7.8 - Taste: 7.5 - Finish: 7.3 

*** Important Note with respect to Rating.

A few of my loyal readers have pointed out that every once in a while my final Rating note did not seem to be totally in line with the written text. I recognize that. When I started this Whisky Blog back in 2011, I was not at all experienced in tasting and scoring Single Malts & Blends. Looking back I realize that during the early years I probably scored the good Whiskies too low and the not so good Whiskies too high. Ever since the beginning I try to remain consequent in my rating, always comparing the outcome to the rating of comparable whiskies in terms of quality and taste and adjusting the final rating if necessary. This might lead to the discrepancy I mentioned before. As a result I have decided to use a new rating system this year. I will still give a rating for Nose, Taste and Finish but now on the scale from 1-10 whereby 1 represents the worst and 10 the best. The sum of these numbers will be divided by 3 to get the final score. I hope this new scoring makes it easier for you to understand what I thought about the whisky I'm reviewing.

If the Final score is above 8 you can safely buy the whisky in question if and when it fits your Aroma/Flavor profile. If the score is between 6 and 8 you might want to try it out in the form of a sample or if offered at a good price. Anything below 6 should be left alone when you are looking for a nice sipping whisky. You might still like it of course & I realize pricing is an important item for many whisky fans especially when you are used to enjoy whisky in a cocktail or a mixed drink. Please let me know what you think of the new rating system and leave your comments and/or suggestions.

Drinking Experience Neat
: Good


Conclusion:

The Stratheden Distillery was founded in 1829 by Alexander Bonthroe & was located in the little village of Auchtermuchty near Cupar in Fife. The distillery worked with Beer Barley and Sherry casks and imported Peat from Orkney. The main reason for closing the distillery was the Prohibition in the USA that cancelled the main export market. It ceased production in 1924 and closed for good in 1926.

First of all I like the purpose of this Series created by Scott Watson and Brian Woods of The Lost Distillery Company. Both worked at Diageo before that. It's nice to try and recreate Single Malts from long closed distilleries based on the information still available on the Water Supply, Barley, Yeast and the distilling process. It's not easy to do that I suppose. The Stratheden is the fourth in a series of six that I bought as a Sample Gift package. All with Natural Color indeed and without Chill-Filtration as it was done in the days.

The Lost Distillery Company usually uses between 5 and 10 Single Malts to try and recreate the lost distilleries. I don't know the contents of this Blended Malt but I suspect it contains some peated Malt from Glen Scotia.

There's of course no way we can tell if this Blended Malt really resembles the old Stratheden Whisky. It's a little Young & Rough at places and I think I probably would like the more mature versions better. But this Classic Selection is not bad and reasonably priced. Try a sample or miniature like I did before buying a full bottle.

Cheers!

Jan van den Ende ๐Ÿฅƒ                                                                 February 23, 2023

The Still Existing Bonded Warehouse

Dalaruan (Lost Distillery Company)


”Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap”


Whisky Review # 967

Country: Scotland
Region: Campbeltown
Brand:  Dalaruan - Classic Selection - Styled on long closed distilleries
Bottled and Blended by: The Lost Distillery Company, Kilmarnock
Type: Blended Malt Scotch Whisky
Age: NAS
Alcohol By Volume (ABV): 43%
Maturation: Unknown. Said to include Sherried Wood and Rum casks
Chill Filtration: No
Price Range: US$ 45-55  (October 2022)
Price/Quality Ratio: ๐Ÿ‘ Good effort by The Lost Distillery Company
Buying Advice: ๐Ÿ˜ A little Thin but it captures the Campbeltown spirit

Colour: Dark Amber with shades of Orange and Brown (Natural Colour)

Nose:

A little Thin but certainly in the slightly Dirty Campbeltown style of distilleries like Kilkerran and Glen Scotia. Don't stick your Nose right away in the middle of your Glass as there is a bit of Varnish and Plastic around. Follow the rim instead to find Peaty, Fruity and Spicy notes. The Alcohol is noticeable. There are certainly a few Sherry notes around but the influence of the Rum casks is more present.

Main Aromas:

Toasted Grains, slightly Burnt Buttered Toast, Brown Sugar, Salted Caramel, Toffee, Earthy & Coastal Peat, Brine, Dried Fruit like Raisins, Apples, Dates & Plums, Citrus Peel, Mixture of Straw and Cow Manure, Dusty Oak casks in a Dunnage Warehouse, Dark Chocolate, Dried Herbs, Pepper, Ginger and Cardamom.        

Supportive Aroma Accents:

Wax, Resin, Vanilla, Honey, Apricot-Filled Puff Pastry, Nectarine, Toasted Pineapple, Forest Floor, Wet Sand, slightly Sour (Dark) Red Berries, Varnish, Plastic, Diesel & traces of Smoked Meat, Smoldering Driftwood and Leather.

My Favourite Shop in Campbeltown
Palate:

A mix of Sweet, Bitter & Sour notes. It's still a bit Thin but much more Smoky than on the Nose. It's still a little Dirty and Harsh but that's Campbeltown for ya! Quite Dry. The Alcohol is noticeable.

Main Flavours:

Toasted Grain, Caramel, Brown Sugar, Treacle, Smoldering Driftwood, Coastal and Earthy Peat, Tar, Brine, Ashes, Dried Fruit like Raisins, Apricots & Apples, Sour Red Berries, Grapefruit Juice, Orange-Flavoured Dark Chocolate, Cinnamon, Pepper and Ginger. 

Supportive Flavour Accents:

Vanilla, Toffee, Honey, Farm, Straw, Wax, Wet Sand, Metal Coins, Nectarine, Lemon, Dusty Wood in Dunnage Warehouse, Cinnamon, Aniseed, Dried Herbs and Licorice. A hint of Tobacco.
     

Finish:

Middle-Long. A mix of Sweet, Bitter & Sour notes. The Bitterness increases towards the Dry end. Some Dirty Ash and Diesel remain in your mouth for a few minutes. I find Toasted Grain, Salted Caramel, Toffee, Burning & Smoldering Driftwood, Dirty Peat, Brine, Ashes, Diesel, Farm, slightly Harsh Alcohol, Sour Berries, Nutshells and Nuts, Dried Fruit like Raisins, Apples and Plums, Orange-flavoured Dark Chocolate, Espresso, Dried Herbs, Dusty Oak, Pepper, Ginger, Cinnamon, Cardamom and a bit of Licorice.

Drinking Advice:

I added a little Water and that helps to calm down the Alcohol. It does become even Thinner and the Finish becomes really Short. Still, you can carefully add a few drops to try it out.

Rating: 84 - Stars on a 1-10 scale: 7.5 (*******1/2)

Nose: 21.5 - Taste: 21 - Finish: 20.5 - Overall: 21

*** Important Note with respect to Rating.

A few of my loyal readers have pointed out that every once in a while my final Rating note does not seem to be totally in line with the written text. I recognize that. When I started this Whisky Blog back in 2011, I was not at all experienced in tasting and scoring Single Malts & Blends. Looking back I realize that during the early years I probably scored the good Whiskies too low and the not so good Whiskies too high. Ever since the beginning I try to remain consequent in my rating, always comparing the outcome to the rating of comparable whiskies in terms of quality and taste and adjusting the final rating if necessary. This might lead to the discrepancy I mentioned before. It would have been much easier if I would have chosen a simple 1-10 rating since the beginning but after having reviewed 950 whiskies it would not be wise to change the system now. I will however from now on add stars on the 1-10 scale so you will have a better idea of what I thought of the whisky reviewed. And I'm planning to only use the 1-10 scale as of January 1, 2023. Please feel free to comment!

Drinking Experience Neat
: Good


                                                        
Dalaruan now. It's called Parliament Place

Conclusion:

The Dalaruan Distillery was founded in 1825 by Charles Colville. Over the years it was expanded and modernised and by 1880 it possessed 3 Pot Stills. In 1896 a fire almost wiped out the distillery. The Water for the production was sourced from the Crosshill Loch. They used all sort of casks for maturation like Rum, Sherry, Beer and Fresh Oak. Campbeltown was called the capital of Whisky and at its peak had 34 Distilleries including Dalaruan. But the town was hit hard during the depression in the 1920's caused a/o by overproduction, the US prohibition and higher Taxes and Wages. Blenders also started to prefer using Speyside Malt in their Blends. Dalaruan was closed in 1925 and the stocks were sold. The distillery was demolished within 5 years and a Housing Estate (Parliament Place) was constructed on the premises.

First of all I like the purpose of this Series created by Scott Watson and Brian Woods of The Lost Distillery Company. Both worked at Diageo before that. It's nice to try and recreate Single Malts from long closed distilleries based on the information still available on the Water Supply, Barley, Yeast and the distilling process. It's not easy to do that I suppose. The Dalaruan is the third in a series of six that I bought as a Sample Gift package. All with Natural Color indeed and without Chill-Filtration as it was done in the days. So far so good.

The Lost Distillery Company usually uses between 5 and 10 Single Malts to try and recreate the lost distilleries. I don't know the contents of this Blended Malt but I suspect it contains peated Malt from Glen Scotia and perhaps Kilkerran, as well as some Islay Malt. I'm almost sure I'm tasting some Bowmore here.

There's of course no way we can tell if this Blended Malt really resembles the old Dalaruan Whisky. But the Campbeltown profile is perhaps a bit easier to re-create and The Lost Distillery Company did an acceptable job here. It's the best of their series so far at least. And it's not really expensive so just try it out if you can find it, principally if you're a fan of Springbank and Glen Scotia. This Dalaruan is not as Fat and Dirty as those two but style-wise it's similar.

Cheers!

Jan van den Ende ๐Ÿฅƒ                                                                 October 20, 2022

Compass Box Menagerie


”Bland Me Shape Me”


Whisky Review # 960

Country: Scotland
Brand: Compass Box Menagerie - Limited Edition - 7741 Bottles - Bottled 01/2021
Type: Blended Scotch Malt Whisky
Age: NAS (See Conclusion for details)
Alcohol By Volume (ABV): 43%
Maturation: Mixed Casks (See Conclusion for details)
Chill Filtration: No
Sample provided by Mauricio from Brazil. Many Thanks!
Price Range: US$ 100-120 (August 2022)
Price/Quality Ratio: ๐Ÿ˜” Quite on the limit as far as I'm concerned
Buying Advice: ๐Ÿ˜ Well-made but a bit Thin and bland for my taste 

Colour:

Golden (Natural Color)

Nose:

Pleasant but a little Thin and Shy. A mix of Medium-Sweet & Sour Malty and Fruity notes. The Peat & Smoke of Laphroaig are noticeable despite the low percentage of this distillery in the blend. The Sherry cask influence is limited.

Main Aromas:

Sweet Barley, Buttered Toast, Vanilla, Wet Grass and Straw, Wet Peat and Campfire Smoke, Yogurt with mixed Fruit Flavours (Strawberry, Apricot, Nectarine, Mango), Toasted Pineapple, slightly Sour Berries & Cherries, Damp Oak, Caffe Latte, Ginger and Cinnamon.

Supportive Aroma Accents:

Honey, Caramel, Nuts, Herbs, Resin, Wax, Iodine, Tar, Varnish, Lemon, Green Apple, Pear, Orange, Floral Perfume, Leather, Bacon and Nutmeg.

Mortlach

Palate:

Again, quite pleasant but a bit Thin. An ABV of around 46% would have been more adequate. Mostly Sweet with some additional Sour & Salty notes. Laphroaig makes its mark again. It's well-made but there's no Wow factor.

Main Flavours:

Sweet Barley, Vanilla, Campfire Smoke, Wet Peat, Green Apple, Grapefruit, Cherry, Toasted Pineapple, Banana, Charred Oak, Caffe Latte, Damp Leaves, Mint, Pepper, Ginger, Nutmeg and Dark Chocolate.

Supportive Flavour Accents:
   
Honey, Salted Caramel, Tar, Hospital, Ashes, Grass and Straw, Roasted Nuts, Melon, Papaya, Mango, Lemon, Leather, Tobacco, Bacon, Cardamom, Cinnamon & Aniseed.

Finish:

Medium-Long. Sweet and Sour with a light Bitterness towards the Medium-Dry end.I find Sweet Barley, Vanilla, Salted Caramel, Honey, Grass and Straw, Wax, Campfire Smoke, Wet Peat, Tar, Ashes, Hospital, Leather, Tobacco, Green Apple, Grapefruit, Banana, Mango, Pear, Nectarine, Toasted Pineapple, Roasted Nuts, Mint, Herbal Tea, Cinnamon, Cardamom, Pepper, Nutmeg, Charred Oak, Bacon and Dark Chocolate.

Glen Elgin

Drinking Advice:

Given the size of the sample, I only tasted the Menagerie neat.

Rating: 84.5 - Stars on a 1-10 scale: 7.5 (*******1/2)

Nose: 21 - Taste: 21.5 - Finish: 21 - Overall: 21

*** Important Note with respect to Rating.

A few of my loyal readers have pointed out that every once in a while my final Rating note does not seem to be totally in line with the written text. I recognize that. When I started this Whisky Blog back in 2011, I was not at all experienced in tasting and scoring Single Malts & Blends. Looking back I realize that during the early years I probably scored the good Whiskies too low and the not so good Whiskies too high. Ever since the beginning I try to remain consequent in my rating, always comparing the outcome to the rating of comparable whiskies in terms of quality and taste and adjusting the final rating if necessary. This might lead to the discrepancy I mentioned before. It would have been much easier if I would have chosen a simple 1-10 rating since the beginning but after having reviewed 950 whiskies it would not be wise to change the system now. I will however from now on add stars on the 1-10 scale so you will have a better idea of what I thought of the whisky reviewed. Please feel free to comment!

Deanston

Drinking Experience Neat
: Good


Conclusion:

As always, Compass Box informs us accurately about the contents of this Blended Malt. The main component (42.6%) was produced at Mortlach distillery and matured in Re-Charred Ex Bourbon barrels. The other components are Deanston (17.1%) that matured in Re-Fill Hogsheads and Re-Fill Sherry-seasoned Butts, Glen Elgin (18.1%) that matured in Re-Charred Ex Bourbon Barrels & Re-Fill Sherry-seasoned Butts and Laphroaig (5,4%) that matured in Re-Charred Ex-Bourbon Hogsheads. The remaining 16.8% is a blend of various Highland distilleries that matured in a mix of Medium- and Heavy-toasted Custom French Oak Barrels. The idea behind the Menagerie is to show the diversity of Scotch Single Malt Whisky, but especially those that present a Meaty character. The age of the Malts used for the Blend is said to be between 11 and 20 years and averages 15 Y.

Mixed feeling about this Menagerie. As usual, Compass presents an acceptable mix that is pleasant enough at first sight and will certainly please newcomers to the world of whisky. Fruity, easy enough and a touch of Peat and Smoke. What more can you possibly want? Well, a bit more body and depth in my opinion. It's all a bit bland and on the Thin side. And quite expensive, even considering the 15 Year average age of this blended Malt. I can see why many people would like this Menagerie but personally I wouldn't buy a full bottle.

PS: When I smelled the empty glass after a couple of hours it strongly reminded me of Clynelish. I would not be surprised if that distillery was responsible for all or part of the Highland mix in the Menagerie.

Cheers! ๐Ÿฅƒ

Jan van den Ende                                                                        August 25, 2022

Laphroaig

Lossit (Lost Distillery Company)


”You’re Lossit Little Girl” 


Whisky Review # 954

Country: Scotland
Region: Islay
Brand: Lossit - Classic Selection - Styled on long closed distilleries
Bottled by: The Lost Distillery Company, Kilmarnock
Type: Blended Malt Scotch Whisky
Age: NAS
Alcohol By Volume (ABV): 43%
Maturation: Mix of Ex-Bourbon casks and Oloroso and PX-Sherried Wood
Chill Filtration: No
Price Range: US$ 45-60 (July 2022)
Price/Quality Ratio:๐Ÿ‘ Okay at around US$ 50
Buying Advice:๐Ÿ˜ It's not bad but if you like the profile take the Caol Ila 12 instead

Colour: Golden (Natural Colour)

Nose:

It certainly reminds me of Islay in a way but the Nose of this Lossit is Young and a bit Thin and the Peat is more subdued when compared to such Islay standards as the Ardbeg & Laphroaig 10 years old. The Nose is mostly Sweet but there are some Sour and Salty notes as well. The Sherry Cask influence is limited so I suspect 2nd and 3rd Refill casks. The Alcohol is slightly noticeable. The Nose is not bad but it lacks power.

Main Aromas:

Toasted Barley, slightly Burnt Buttered Toast, Salted Caramel, Coastal Peat, Brine, Cold Campfire Smoke, Green Apple, Nectarine, Lemon, Straw, Milk Chocolate, Dairy, Cooked Vegetables, Mint Tea, Pepper and Leather.        
    
Supportive Aroma Accents:

Burnt Heather, Vanilla, Honey, Orange, Grapefruit, Iodine, Driftwood, Olive Oil, Nuts and Nutshells, Green Banana, Pear Drops, Bacon and Shell Fish on the BBQ, Ginger, Cinnamon and Tar.

Palate:

A Young and slightly Rough mix of Sweet, Bitter & Sour notes. The Alcohol is more noticeable at this point. It's not really bad but it tastes a little bit Artificial, Hot and slightly Metallic.

Main Flavours:

Toasted Barley, Salted Caramel, Slightly Burnt Buttered Toast, Green Apple, Lemon, Coastal Peat, Cold Campfire Smoke, Ashes, Milk Chocolate, Nougat, Nuts & Shells, Charred Oak, Mint Tea, Wet Rocks, Cigar Box, Pepper and Ginger.
         
Supportive Flavour Accents:

Vanilla, Toffee, Heather-Honey, Grapefruit, Orange, Nectarine, Tar, Iodine, White Wine, Green Bananas, Pear, Floral Soap, Bacon and Shellfish on the BBQ garnished with Fresh Herbs like Rosemary and Thyme, Cinnamon and Leather.
     


Finish:

Middle-Long, a little Thin, Bitter-Sweet & Ashy. The Bitterness increases somewhat towards the Dry end and the aftertaste is slightly Artificial, Soapy & Metallic. The Alcohol is much more present by now. I find Toasted Barley, Salted Caramel, Toffee, Vanilla, Peat, Cold Campfire Smoke, Ashes, Tar, Iodine, Green Apple, Lemon, Grapefruit, White Wine, Nuts and Nutshells, Charred Oak, Straw, Bacon & Shellfish on the BBQ, Mint Tea, Pepper, Cinnamon and Ginger.

Drinking Advice:

Added Water does not improve this Lossit.

Rating: 82 - Stars on a 1-10 scale: 7.5 (*******1/2)

Nose: 21 - Taste: 20.5  - Finish: 20 - Overall: 20.5

*** Important Note with respect to Rating.

A few of my loyal readers have pointed out that every once in a while my final Rating note does not seem to be totally in line with the written text. I recognize that. When I started this Whisky Blog back in 2011, I was not at all experienced in tasting and scoring Single Malts & Blends. Looking back I realize that during the early years I probably scored the good Whiskies too low and the not so good Whiskies too high. Ever since the beginning I try to remain consequent in my rating, always comparing the outcome to the rating of comparable whiskies in terms of quality and taste and adjusting the final rating if necessary. This might lead to the discrepancy I mentioned before. It would have been much easier if I would have chosen a simple 1-10 rating since the beginning but after having reviewed 950 whiskies it would not be wise to change the system now. I will however from now on add stars on the 1-10 scale so you will have a better idea of what I thought of the whisky reviewed. Please feel free to comment!

Drinking Experience Neat
: Good


Conclusion:

Lossit was founded by Malcolm McNeil near Ballygrant on the Isle of Islay in 1817 as an illicit farm distillery, producing its own Barley and drawing Peat from the bogs. It was the biggest producer on the island in the early days of the Whisky industry until it closed in 1867 as it had become outdated and isolated.

First of all I like the purpose of this Series created by Scott Watson and Brian Woods of The Lost Distillery Company. Both worked at Diageo before that. It's nice to try and recreate Single Malts from long closed distilleries based on the information still available on the Water Supply, Barley, Yeast and the distilling process. It's not easy to do that I suppose. The Lossit is the second in a series of six that I bought as a Sample Gift package. All with Natural Color indeed and without Chill-Filtration as it was done in the days. So far so good.

The Lost Distillery Company usually uses between 5 and 10 Single Malts to try and recreate the lost distilleries. The Lossit is said to contain some peated BenNevis but I would not be surprised if it contained at least some Ardbeg, Lagavullin and Caol Ila as well.

There's of course no way we can tell if this Blended Malt really resembles the old Lossit Whisky. But The Lost Distillery Company succeeds in creating an acceptable Young Islay Whisky. You should not pay much more than US$ 50 though. My main issue with this Lossit and the Classic Selection so far is that the Whiskies are very Young and Thin. They also release the Archivist and Vintage Selections that contain older Whiskies that matured in better casks. I will certainly try to get some of those as well. If you like this Aroma/Flavour profile, you better go for the Caol Ila 12 Years.

Cheers!

Jan van den Ende                                                                            July 11, 2022

Wardhead 1997 (Carn Mor)


”Songs from the Wood” 


Whisky Review # 943

Country: Scotland
Region: Speyside
Brand: Wardhead 1997 (Carn Mor - Celebration of the Cask Series)
Distilled on: 20-02-1997
Bottled By/For: Morrison & MacKay (MMcK) on 01/08/2018
Type: Single Cask Blended Malt Scotch Whisky - Cask # 43 - 354 Bottles
Age: 21 Years
Alcohol By Volume (ABV): 54.6% (Cask Strength)
Maturation: Ex-Bourbon Hogshead
Chill Filtration: No
Price Range: US$ 140-160 (April 2022)
Price/Quality Ratio: ๐Ÿ˜ Okay. A 21 Year old Single Malt is never cheap these days!
Buying Advice: ๐Ÿ˜” Not bad at all but probably only for Woody Woodpeckers!

Colour: Golden (Natural Colour)

Nose:

A Mix of Sweet and slightly Sour notes. Quite Malty and Yeasty. The Oak is quite noticeable and so is the Alcohol. There's still sufficient Glenfiddich Fruit to be noted but this Spirit could have done with fewer years in the casks. Anywhere between 15 and 18 years would have been just fine. The Nose is not unpleasant but nothing out of the ordinary as well.

Main Aromas:

Sweet Barley, Salted Caramel, German Butter Biscuits, Honey, Yeast, Green Apple, Pear, Mix of Nuts and Dried Fruit like Apricot, Gooseberry, Grapefruit, Slightly Dusty Casks, Cinnamon and Mint.    
    
Supportive Aroma Accents:

Vanilla, Toffee, Wax, Resin, Powder Sugar, Grass/Straw, Mandarin, Banana, Lemon, Strawberry Yogurt, Melon, Pineapple, Nougat, Floral Soap, Tobacco, Green Leaves,  Wet Rocks, Fresh and Dried Herbs, Ginger and Pepper.


Palate:

The Sweet and Sour notes of the Nose are still there but they are threatened by the Bitterness of Cask and Wood Spices. I miss balance here. Either Mr. Morrison or Mr. MacKay should have bottled it a few years earlier in my opinion ๐Ÿ˜‰. The Alcohol is noticeable as well. Somehow I got images of an Apple Pie that was kept in a brand new wooden box for a couple of weeks!

Main Flavours:

Sweet Barley, Salted Caramel, Syrup, Honey, Wax, Resin, Yeast, Dough, Pear, Green Apple, Mandarin, Banana, Gooseberry, Grapefruit, Bounty Bars, Capuccino, Earth, Dusty Charred Oak, Coconut, Pepper, Ginger and Mint. 
         
Supportive Flavour Accents:

Toffee, Vanilla, Grass and Straw, Melon, Lemon, Strawberry, Leather, Herbal Tea, Tobacco, Aniseed, Licorice and Cinnamon.
 
Finish:

Quite Long with lots of Bitter Oak and Menthol. Quite Dry towards the end. Oak and Wood Spices are really controlling the Sweet Malt and Sour Fruit at this point. This really should have been bottled earlier. Still, it's better than most of today's boring Malts. I find Sweet Barley, Salted Caramel, Vanilla Ice Cream, Toffee, Honey, Wax, Simple Syrup, Grass/Straw, Green Apple, Pear, Banana, Green Grapes, Gooseberry, Grapefruit, Lemon, Mandarin, Toasted Almonds, Charred Oak, Wax, Cacao Powder, Herbal Tea, Floral Soap, lightly Burnt Marshmallow, Green Leaves, Leather, Tobacco, Cinnamon, Pepper, Ginger, Nutmeg, Aniseed, Mint and Licorice.

Drinking Advice:

You can certainly add a spoonful of Water to this Wardhead thereby diminishing the Bitterness somewhat and increasing the Fruitiness. It obviously loses some of the original raw character as well. I liked it both ways actually.

Rating: 86

Nose: 21.5 - Taste: 21.5 - Finish: 21.5 - Overall: 21.5

Drinking Experience Neat: Good. Would be better with less cask time.

Conclusion:

William Grant & Sons are the owners of the Speyside distilleries Glenfiddich and The Balvenie. When they sell Casks with Glenfiddich Spirit to Independent Bottlers like Morrison & MacKay, they add a teaspoon of The Balvenie and label it as Wardhead. This way, the independent bottlers can't sell it as Glenfiddich and also not as Single Malt as the minimum amount of The Balvenie classifies the mix as a Blended Malt.

I fully enjoyed this Tasting session. Let me explain. On the one hand this Malt has certainly overstayed its time in the cask causing a Bitterness that will not please most Whisky lovers as it compromises the Fruitiness of the Glenfiddich Spirit. But on the other hand it shows Character, something I so dearly miss in todays Mainstream Malt Madness. If you like the standard Glenfiddich expressions you should not go for this one but if you're looking for some Raw Woody Adventure you should give this Wardhead a chance!

Cheers!

Jan van den Ende                                                                           April 20, 2022

Auchnagie (Lost Distillery Company)


”You’re Lost Little Girl”


Whisky Review # 942

Country: Scotland
Region: Southern Highlands
Brand: Auchnagie - Classic Selection - Styled on Long Closed Distilleries
Distilled by: The Lost Distillery Company, Kilmarnock
Type: Blended Malt Scotch Whisky
Age: NAS (Said to be on average 10-12 Years old)
Alcohol By Volume (ABV): 43%
Maturation: Ex-Bourbon casks
Chill Filtration: No
Price Range: US$ 45-65 (April 2022)
Price/Quality Ratio: ๐Ÿ˜ At US$ 45 it's okay. I wouldn't pay more though.
Buying Advice: ๐Ÿ˜• It's an interesting experiment but this one doesn't convince me.

Colour: Light Gold (Natural Colour)

Nose:

Relatively Young and slightly Edgy. The Alcohol is noticeable and so is a persistent Varnish note. Otherwise it's okay presenting a mixture of Sweet and slightly Sour notes. It's Fruity but also rather Yeasty and Biscuity.

Main Aromas:

Sweet Barley, German Butter Biscuits, Heather Honey, Yeast, Green Apple, Pear, Nectarine, Citrus Peel, slightly Sour Red Berries, Grapefruit Juice, Floral Soap, Varnish, Cinnamon and Oak Char.    
    
Supportive Aroma Accents:

Toffee, Vanilla, White Wine, Straw, Honeydew Melon, Nuts, Wet Newspaper, Pepper, Ginger, Mint, Dried Herbs and Aniseed.


Palate:

Young, slightly Edgy and a little Thin with Sweet and Sour notes. Fruity and Herbal.

Main Flavours:

Sweet Malt, Vanilla, Heather-Honey, Citrus Peel, Grapefuit Juice, Green Apple, Pear, Banana, Oak Char, Dried Herbs, Cinnamon, Pepper, Ginger, Aniseed and Licorice.         
Supportive Flavour Accents:

Toffee, Sugary Candy, Caramel, Floral Perfume, Straw, Nectarine, White Wine, Dusty Track, Earth, Nuts, Cloves and Nutmeg.
     
Finish:

Middle-Long and slightly on the Hot side. Quite Dry towards the end. I find Sweet Barley, Toasted Grain, Toast, Vanilla, Toffee, Heather-Honey, Green Apple, Pear, Grapefruit, Strawberry, Orange, Lemon, Banana, Grass & Straw, Dusty Track, Oak Char, Nuts, Pepper, Ginger, Nutmeg, Menthol and Licorice.

Drinking Advice:

By adding a few drops of Water, you eliminate most of the Harshness. It also gets very Light and Thin this way. But the Fruit becomes more vivid. You can add a little Water but don't overdo it as you will kill it quickly.

Rating: 80

Nose: 20.5 - Taste: 20 - Finish: 19.5 - Overall: 20

Drinking Experience Neat: Okay/Good

Conclusion:

The Auchnagie farm Distillery (later named Tullymey) was founded in the year 1812 by Mr. James Duff and was located 6 miles South-East of Pitlochry in the Southern Highlands. The water for the destillation came from Loch Broom. It was quite mineral having been filtered through Peat Moss and Granite. Some of their main production problems included inconsistent supply of Water and inconsistent size of the Bere Barley used. It was later sold to John Dewar and Son who closed it in 1911 and dismantled it a year later.

First of all I like the purpose of this Series. It's nice to try and recreate Single Malts from long closed distilleries based on the information still available on the Water Supply, Barley, Yeast and the distilling process. It's not easy to do that I suppose. The Auchnagie is the first in a series of six that I bought as a Sample Gift package. All with Natural Color indeed and without Chill-Filtration as it was done in the days. So far so good. My issue with this expression is that, as far as I can judge at least, mostly 2nd and 3rd Refill Ex-Bourbon casks were used for maturation. With a few quality casks this expression could have been much better. After having nosed and tasted the Auchnagie, I went thru my Highlands tasting notes and this is the Single Malt that came closest to this reborn Auchnagie. Curious? Click on the link and have a look!

Cheers!

Jan van den Ende                                                                           April 13, 2022


Important Market Information!

The 4th international World Whisky Forum will be held in June this year at Stauning Distillery in Denmark. This year´s overall theme is Sustainability and the moderator, as in previous years, is Dave Broom.

The organization is selling circa 70 tickets for those who want to attend in person and enjoy presentations, panel discussions, tours, dinners and mingle with people who all share a passion for whisky.

For the first time, however, you can also choose to take part virtually and watch the presentations from some of the industry´s most respected voices from your own computer or phone.

Tickets are on sale now at:  

www.worldwhiskyforum.org/tickets

If you have any questions, please contact Jan Groth at:

jan.groth@worldwhiskyforum.org