Tasting collectable whiskies.
During the Whisky Live Paris 2013 there was the opportunity to taste some rare and therefore collectable single malts.
Whisky was poured by Serge Valentin.
I’m not sure what Loch Dhu was doing there, but maybe some sense of that was hiding.
During the two days of the festival I tried six collectors expressions of whisky. I limit myself here only to provide basic tasting experience, without detailed scoring, because I could not devote enough time for a reliable assessment.
The first was GlenDronach, distilled on 15 February 1971, bottled in May 2013, 42 years old, matured in Pedro Ximenes Sherry Puncheon, cask strength 44.6% ABV, single cask, bottle 211 of 432. Natural color, unchillfiltered.
C: strong black tea, brown,
N: sherry, intense herbs, tobacco, cocoa,
T: sherry is obvious, very sweet, almost liqueur, dense, oily, meaty, prunes, dried apricots, anise, light bitterness,
F: long anisic.
Intense whisky, but not my type, too sweet, too liqueurs.
The next was Strathisla 21 years old, matured in sherry casks, 40% ABV.
N: the smell similar to GlenDronach, light sherry, some herbs, leather, and a bit of citrus, then sweet,
T: citrus, leather, cigars, sweet,
Strathisla was less liquory, more drinkable, but also less distinctive.
Then the time came for Laphroaig. 27 years old, matured in Sherry Oloroso casks, distilled in 1980, bottled in 2007. Bottle 717 of 972. Natural color, unchillfiltered and cask strength – 57.4% ABV.
C: black tea, brown,
N: first sherry, then peat, all beautifully connected and intertwined, intense, powerful, meaty, there is all characteristic of Laphroaig with lots of sherry, well-balanced,
T: reflects the nose, sherry interspersed with peat, touches of ocean, seaweed, squid, oysters, leather, chocolate and oranges,
F: very long.
The real discovery of the weekend, a great single malt. Certainly more than 90 points.
Then came the 40 year old Glenfiddich. 41.7% ABV, bottle No. 421 of 600.
N: fresh, floral, ripe pear and apple, a touch of sweetness,
T: sweet, silky with a bit of spices that goes into ripe fruits,
Very nice, collectable Glenfiddich.
Speaking of collectable whisky, it wouldn’t of course do without Port Ellen. 18 years old, distilled in 1982, matured in sherry casks, natural color, unchillfiltered and 50% ABV.
N: light sherry and peat, a touch of salt with mineral notes
T: a lot of peat with accents of sherry, but not particularly intense, very drying,
Rather nothing special or particularly memorable. Or just it needed more time to open up, which I did not have.
Finally the Bowmore. Distilled on 8 October 1968, bottled on 20 November 1999, by the Signatory, 31 years old, 44% ABV. Bottle 52 of 252, single cask.
C: light amber,
N: quite delicate, floral, slightly scented, clearly noticeable citrus and light touch of peat,
T: citrus are in the foreground, lemon, mandarins and maybe even oranges, then there are gentle tones of peat,
Old Bowmores have their own distinctive charm. It was no different in this case.