29 September 2016

28/09/2016 October outturn at Cadenhead's

Yep. Another regular event to frequent that is less a chore than a delight. OB and JS, who are both involved in most interesting events, you will have noticed, attend, alongside ten or so others. The session is brief and to the point. Not a masterclass to celebrate such and such bottling or distillery; merely speed dating with a few drams -- fourteen of them, to be precise. All are served in plastic cups. Notes are therefore short and unimaginative. Blame the format.

Mortlach 13yo 2003/2016 (46%, Cadenhead Small Batch, Bourbon Hogsheads): nose: quite thin, with a note of white alcohol. Mouth: thin again, watery, even. JS finds it Calvados-y, which I agree with. Finish: finally some action, with velvety grapes, i.e. soft, with a gentle bitterness. JS finds peanuts in the finish. I find it completely uninteresting. 5/10

Glenrothes 14yo 2002/2016 (57.4%, Cadenhead Small Batch, Bourbon Hogsheads, 516b): nose: dried leaves, drying moss, overripe peach. Mouth: coating and acidic, it quickly heats up to deliver hot wax. Finish: hay and wood bitterness. More to my taste than the Mortlach, still, I do not care for it much. 5/10

Auchroisk 14yo 2001/2016 (46%, Cadenhead Small Batch, Bourbon Hogsheads, 1008b): nose: tame, almost silent. Mouth: lively on the tongue, it has orchard fruit. Finish: more delicious orchard fruit and a lightly drying streak. This is better. It makes OB think of the 27yo that came out earlier this year, though without the same depth, of course. 7/10

Teaninich 10yo 2006/2016 (46%, Cadenhead Small Batch, Bourbon Hogsheads, 684b): nose: peach stone. Mouth: spirity and spicy, almost vinegary. JS detects corn -- I agree again. Finish: spirity at first, it then delivers corn syrup. 6/10

Rich Fruity Sherry 36yo (44.5%, Cadenhead Creations, B#2): a blend of Tamdhu, Highland Park, Macallan and Invergordon; all matured in sherry casks. Nose: glue, wood varnish. Mouth: dark fruit and wood glue. Finish: more wood glue, glued wood (spot the difference!) and dark fruit (the blackcurrant from the Invergordon, presumably). Nice. 7/10

Royal Brackla 18yo 1997/2016 (54.4%, Cadenhead Small Batch, Bourbon Hogsheads, 402b): nose: grass, straw, even, and an animal, farmy touch to it. Mouth: soft green grapes, very different to the nose. Finish: bold, drying, with a kick of farmyard flavours. 8/10

Glentauchers 39yo 1976/2016 (43.8%, Cadenhead Single Cask, Bourbon Hogshead, 180b): this is sold out, we are told. Miffed. I loved the 38yo from 2015, how will this fare? Nose: we shift gears to a point we break the gear box! Japanese, tea relaxing hot towels in a restaurant after a spice-rich meal. Mouth: Japanese tea, water melon (JS). Finish: a stream of tropical fruit amongst Japanese tea and a thin veil of smoke. Yep, it is beautiful indeed. 9/10

William Cadenhead Blend 43yo (44.2%, Cadenhead): Glenlivet, Glenfarclas and Invergordon, this time. Nose: a mushroom cave, mould, dusty and humid cellars, cheese rind. Mouth: velvety and soft, woody, yet fruity too. Finish: mix of fruit (apricot, mango) and wood. A complete oddball, this. I think I like it, yet the nose is very peculiar. 8/10

Glen Grant 31yo 1984/2016 (46.1%, Cadenhead Single Cask, Sherry Butt, 414b): nose: wood glue, hay, wicker. Mouth: warming. Finish: balanced, slightly drying. 6/10

Highland Park 30yo 1986/2016 (46.5%, Cadenhead Small Batch, Bourbon Hogsheads, 174b): nose: lavender, heather, super dry, super fragrant pot-pourri, before a little smoke comes up too. Mouth: velvety, with a bit of smoke and warm lavender. Finish: smoke (lots of it), heather on the hearth and a lot of violet sweets. The sort of profile people like in HP, not in Bowmore. I love it in both. 8/10

Dufftown 26yo 1988/2015 (51%, Cadenhead Authentic Collection, Bourbon Hogshead, 214b): this is not from this outturn, yet it is so kindly offered, it would be rude to refuse. Nose: chocolate, corn on the cob. Mouth: warm, earthy. Finish: very long, vaguely grape-y, with a whiff of bandages. 7/10

Ledaig 19yo 1997/2016 (53.9%, Cadenhead Single Cask, 252b): nose: untanned leather, with a bit of flesh left on the skin. Overipe peach. Mouth: meaty and animal, leather in a tin of varnish. Finish: one third smoke, one third meat, one third varnish. Not my style. Most in the group love it, though. 5/10

Inexcusable typo on the label, here!
Caol Ila 34yo 1982/2016 (60.1%, Cadenhead Small Batch, Bourbon Hogsheads, 264b): how can a 34yo whisky still be that high in alcohol, eh? Answers on a postcard. Nose: deep, smokey and massive, with a note of nail polish. Mouth: warming, peppery and ballsy. Finish: long and warming, with a lot of nail polish. Not convinced by this. 6/10

TMAH 24yo 1991/2016 (62.6%, Cadenhead Cask Strength): nose: nail polish, turpentine. Mouth: more of the same. It dances on the tongue quite nicely. Finish: bitter as ink, with all the complexity of nail varnish and polish. This is a nice rum. Will not make me sell my soul, yet pleasant enough. 7/10

The Invergordon 43yo and Burnside 26yo are unavailable, unfortunately.

Good session. Nice to meet new faces, great to catch up with old ones, and really, a mixed bag of whiskies to please everyone, this month.

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