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Monday, February 20, 2017

Kilchoman 2006 Vintage Release, 46 %

Review #413
This is 5 years old (2006/2011) and from 1st Fill (80%) & Refill (20%) Bourbon barrels. 11.300 bottles were made. Sweet peat, vanilla, hay and baked apples in the smell. Wonderful balance and so uncomplicated (in the good way).

Heavy peat in the taste. Very tasteful even though it is watered down to 46 %. Very sweet as well, but it is more fruity sweetness, than vanilla/honey/sugar sweetness. Candied apples and oranges. Even more sweetness in the finish. It is medium long, but some “watery peat” stays behind for a very long time. So it’s a semi-long finish?

It is not a very complex or a very elegant dram, but I really enjoy it. From start to finish, just good quality. And at 46 % it doesn’t overpower the nose or palate with alcohol burn or roughness, and the great sweetness mixes perfect with the peat. I will rate this 88/100 (22/22/22/22).

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Glenglassaugh Torfa, 50 %

Review #412
This is matured in ex Bourbon barrels and the PPM level sits at 20. Nice subtle peat in the smell. Some pears and apples but nothing too sweet. Actually it is very light considering the ABV at 50, and not much is going on.

The peat is the first thing to hit the palate. Then some vanilla and hints of exotic fruits in the background. Just a touch! Pineapples and coconut. In the finish I get some grass that mixes with the peat and a little wood and spices. Some light citrusy notes is present from smell to finish.

Fine dram, fine balance, but I miss some complexity. It tastes young, but the peat makes up for the missing flavours you normally get from longer maturation. Can’t wait for Glenglassaugh to make some older peated versions! I will give this 82/100 (20/21/21/20).

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Tamnavulin 23 yo (1992/2015), Authentic Collection, 55 %

Review #411
From Cadenhead´s comes this single cask from a Bourbon hogshead bottled at cask strength. Only 258 bottles were made. Loads of vanilla and marzipan sweetness in the smell. Classic Bourbon barrel maturation. White fruits like apples and pears mixed with spices. Some floral notes as well. Surprisingly mellow on the nose regarding the cask strength.

A good alcohol kick in the taste at first. But in the good way, and not overwhelming. Fresh grass and hay, like being on the countryside, mixed with fresh white fruits. Medium finish where the same flavours as in the taste just lingers out. The grass and sweet vanilla and marzipan is what stands a bit out.

I would love to have been challenged a bit more. It is a bit simple, but a fine dram. I wouldn’t have guessed it to be 55 %, so that was a bit fun to try. I will give this 83/100 (21/20/21/21).

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Tamnavulin, Double Cask, 40 %

Review #410
This is the first official bottling from Tamnavulin in more than 20 years. It is matured in ex Bourbon barrels and then finished in Sherry casks. The smell is very fresh, fruity and full of lime. Classic flavours from Bourbon barrel maturation. It seems very young though...

A bit boring in the taste. Some fresh fruits and lime again, and now some sweetness comes forward. The finish is so short, and you sit back with a watery feeling.

This is just too young and too bland. Very watery at 40 % and it all seems like it is over before it has started. Maybe with a little longer finish and bottled at 43 or 46 % it could be interesting, but this is just a bit too boring. It doesn’t hurt anybody, but as I said, just too boring. I will give this 75/100 (19/19/19/18).

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Glen Garioch 12 yo, 48 %

Review #409
A hidden gem! Well, not all that hidden, but I think it deserves a spot amongst all the good classics! Nice malty and fruity on the nose. Some vanilla and gentle oak mixed with some spices. It deserves to be left in the glass for some minutes.

More fresh in the taste. Again malty but some white fruits joins the party. Fresh green apples! The finish is not that long (not a short one either though), but the 48 % makes it last long enough and you are left behind like “aahhhh”. Beneath it all some subtle burned oak and spiciness lies and pampers the palate.

A friend once called this an honest dram. That is spot on! I mention malty several times during the review, but that is meant in the most positive way, and not in the new-make-kind-of-way. I will give this 85/100 (21/21/21/22).

Monday, February 13, 2017

Tomintoul, Old Ballantruan, 50 %

Review #408
This is bottled in 2014 and is one of several peated expressions from Tomintoul. Sweet vanilla peat and loads of grass and hay in the smell. It has that light Tomintoul, and Glenlivet, character and that works very well with the peated malt. Only minus is that it might is too light and lacks a little flavor.

Dry peat with a little burned oak in the taste. Actually quite dry all the way through. A nice little alcohol burn as well. The peat stays all the way through accompanied with some sweet vanilla and leaves you with a nice long warm finish and mouth feeling.

A fine dram, but I must admit it is a bit boring. Luckily they bottled it at 50 %, making it quite enjoyable at least. I think Tomintoul could be very successful if they tried making a high quality peated malt whisky with some serious age. I will give this 82/100 (20/20/21/21).