16 October 2017

13/10/2017 Three drams by Cadenhead

No particular occasion, but those miniatures are not going to drink themselves. Or indeed, they will: the level on these is not the best. I would rather enjoy some of it, not leave all to the angels.

Edradour 18yo (46%, Cadenhead, b. ca 1990): not many Edradours on these pages. It is not a distillery that excites many enthusiasts, and certainly not one that is often bottled independently -- even less so since the Signatory Vintage take-over in the early 2000. This is a treat, then. And watch that font on the label! Nose: OME, which is to say: dusty books and pickles in vinegar. Once the OME (Old Miniature Effect, if you have forgotten) has taken the back seat, this turns into a soapfest; a blend of Sunlight, Nivea, Badedas and Neighbours. You know: Holly, Nicole, Jason, Kylie -- Neighbours. Twenty minutes later, wood emerges, shy. It really is a wooden plank with litres of soap spread onto it. A soap sandwich, in which the bread is replaced with wood. I need to correct all the above: it is not soap, but shampoo! Elsève de L'Oréal, Garnier Ultra Doux, Clairol Herbal Essence. Not a good start. Washing-up liquid, and not the nicely-scented ones. This is proper Edradouche. Mouth: aouch! Soapy water, lukewarm, with wine, a hint of white wood and loooooooaaaaads of shampoo. If anyone ever wondered how they used to clean the mash tun and washbacks in the 1970s, I think I have an answer! The texture is also that of soapy water, by the way. Green chilli appears -- this is the hottest shampoo I have ever drunk. :-) Finish: eurgh. I am not very sensitive to soap, but this is way beyond my tolerance threshold. Chilli powder on green leaves, a little minty custard and more litres of Garnier Ultra Doux shampoo (chamomile, the yellow-top bottle). To paraphrase Jim Murray, "Pitlochry must have run out of soap for months after this was produced." I do not and will not often quote Murray. It is worth it, today. Worst whisky on this blog, to-date. 2/10

Glenfiddich-Glenlivet 22yo (46%, Cadenhead, b. ca 1990): one of the best-selling malts in the world (it was number one for the longest time), Glenfiddich is also a rare occurrence on this blog. One can easily see why: when is the last time you saw an independent bottling of it? As for the official bottlings, prices tend to get silly as soon as one moves away from the NAS-12-15yo. This is a rare opportunity "to make of one beer two gulps," to quote a Belgian expression. Nose: OME again, with with more old books and pickled gherkins. Then, it is HP brown sauce, marrow purée, wine, decanted for too long, old-school larders in old castles (think: Duart), game sauce, chestnut purée and teaks cabinets. Definitely teak cabinets and nut shells. Nice. Mouth: crushed peach stone, more teak furniture and green-chilli heat. Do I detect washing-up liquid? Perhaps. Hard to tell. Am I paranoid? Is it leftovers from the previous dram? In any case, it has nowhere near the same level of soap as the Edradouche. This is elegantly woody, with exotic wood, to be accurate (teak). Finish: exotic wood here too (teak, mahogany), velvety fruit (peach, soft apricot flesh), a drop of liquid soap. This is warm, quite comforting, and rather pleasant, in an old-school sort of way. 6/10

The Glenlivet 14yo (80° Proof, Cadenhead, b.1970s): Cadenhead still called it The Glenlivet, at the time, not Minmore, nor Glenlivet. Wonder what Chivas Brothers, the current owners of Glenlivet, would think of that. In any case, this is likely a late 1950s, or early 1960s distillation and, judging by the colour, a sherry maturation. What could go wrong? Everything, if tonight's first dram is an indicator. Nose: very deeply sherried, with walnut oil, raspberry vinegar, old tools, hazelnut shells, chestnut purée, crushes hazelnuts, linseed oil -- scratch that: it is wok oil, past its prime, in a sheet-metal wok. The texture is milky, bordering on creamy, and it has a faint bitterness (the metal). Finish: similar notes, here, with a mix woody and metallic tones. Shoe polish, teak cabinets, wood varnish, sesame oil in a sheet-metal wok, chestnut purée, chesterfield sofas. The pick of the litter, although I do not consider it a total winner either. 7/10

No comments:

Post a Comment