31 October 2016

26/10/2016 October Authentic Collection outturn at Cadenhead's

Is this becoming the new routine? Who can tell?
What we can tell, however, is that this little session will only result in minimal notes. The format really does not lend itself to more. It is not a bar where one can try the latest at leisure and by the dram, it is a few drops of each in an hour to help decide what to buy this month -- and that is fine.

Inchmurrin 19yo 1996/2016 (49.5%, Cadenhead Authentic Collection, Bourbon Hogshead, 318b): nose: white wine, vinegar, not much happening. Mouth: apple eau-de-vie, bitter flowers. Finish: earthy, it stings like eau-de-vie (grappa?), nail varnish. On the back of an exceptional bottling (the Chairman's Stock 30yo), I expected more from this lesser-seen distillery. 6/10

Tomintoul-Glenlivet 10yo 2006/2016 (56.9%, Cadenhead Authentic Collection, Bourbon Barrel, 258b): nose: I am convinced the plastic cups do not do the drams justice: I find this silent too. Not much going on. Mouth: eau-de-vie and cut flowers again. Finish: bitter, with a hint of milk chocolate. This has potential, yet it is too discreet to show it fully tonight. 6/10

Littlemill 24yo 1992/2016 (52.2%, Cadenhead, Hogshead, 294b): nose: lovely marzipan, white chocolate. Mouth: soft, mellow and a bit indistinct. Finish: bakery and overripe fruit. The alcohol is not very well integrated, to be honest. This is objectively a good whisky. Subjectively, after a few legendary Cadenhead offerings (I do not use the term lightly), this particular expression of this cherished, closed distillery, disappoints a bit. 8/10

Longmorn-Glenlivet 26yo 1990/2016 (55.3%, Cadenhead Authentic Collection, Bourbon Barrel, 162b): nose: the quantity I receive is too small to make an opinion, unfortunately. Mouth: fresh and grassy. Finish: bitter, metallic and, well, disappointing. 5/10

Cambus 28yo b.2016 (46.6%, Cadenhead World Whiskies, Bourbon Hogshead, 218b): nose: fresh Virginia tobacco, aromatic herbs, fresh out of of the refrigerator. Mouth: sharp and fresh, chiselled (urgh, that term!), with a note of raw dough and *unreadable* (watermelon?) Finish: dough-y and fruity, with the right balance of alcohol. No stripping effect on this Cambus? Nope, the following morning is not impacted. For the record, Cambus usually strips my tongue for half a day. 8/10

Strathmill 20yo 1995/2016 (52.7%, Cadenhead, Re-casked 2009, Chateau Lafitte Finish, 258b): nose: walnut flesh (poor souls who have never picked walnuts in their childhood!), wine, liqueur. Mouth: peachy in texture, powerful and acidic. Finish: chocolate and warm cherry coulis. As far as wine-finished whiskies go, this is decent indeed. Still not my favourite profile, though. 6/10

Glenfarclas 26yo 1990/2016 (50.8%, Cadenhead, Sherry Cask, 228b): nose: strawberry coulis. Mouth: thin, Glenfarclas-y, with a vague fruitiness (that will be the sherry influence). Finish: nail polish and a hint of fruit again. Well, it is not today I will be seduced by a Glenfarclas, then. 6/10

Bunnahabhain 26yo 1989/2016 (45.9%, Cadenhead Authentic Collection, Bourbon Hogshead, 246b): nose: greengage, unripe redcurrant. Mouth: fresh and balanced, with unripe berries. Finish: green hazelnut. Interesting. So many unripe fruits, in this! 7/10

Longrow 14yo 2002/2016 (49.3%, Cadenhead Authentic Collection, Bourbon Hogshead, 150b): nose: smoked cheese rind. I am taken by a craving for raclette. Hope to have one, next time in Switzerland... Mouth: a hint of soot and earth, though it is mainly fresh -- ooh! Soot grows bolder. Finish: long, bold but not invading, with gentle peat smoke. This is very well made. 8/10

Caol Ila 15yo 2000/2016 (53%, Cadenhead Authentic Collection, Bourbon Barrel, 204b): nose: pharmacopeia, a herbal shoppe, smoked bacon. Mouth: balanced, it dances on the tongue with bandage tones. Finish: a chimney fire, a bucket of soot and smoked barley. Is this really a Caol Ila? 7/10

Laphroaig 18yo 1998/2016 (55.9%, Cadenhead Authentic Collection, Bourbon Hogshead, 204b): nose: bandages and cherry liqueur. Mouth: mercurochrome and embers. Finish: huge, bold, with hot embers, coal, ash and berries. Lovely Laphroaig, this. 7/10

There we are. As I type, the Littlemill is all gone, of course (there were only a couple of cases and over 25 names on the waiting list), while the rest is still available. All is at least ok (this is Cadenhead, after all), yet I have to admit nothing blew me away. The Longrow was the surprise, for me, with the Cambus a good second.

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