Highland Park 12-year-old

Acquired – Gift, December 2013

78/100 – Whisky Bible 2013 (and 2014)
84/100 – Ralfy – His review on YouTube (June 2014)
91/100 – Whisky Bitch – Her review on YouTube (December 2011)

Ratings can be confusing. When Ralfy reviewed this 12yo back in 2009, the Whisky Bible 2009 rated this bottle at 91/100 and Ralfy 88/100. But the bible was actually based on whisky tasted in 2008. In 2013 Jim Murray, in his Whisky Bible, drops this 12yo down to 78/100 and says he hopes the fall from grace is due to freak casks. He goes on to say that the Highland Park 12yo is one of his favourite whiskies of all time. But I got this bottle in 2013, where as his review was based on a bottle from 2012. I’m just hoping the whisky used for this 12yo in 2013 was an improvement on the 2012 batch!

As if by magic my copy of the Whisky Bible 2014 arrived this morning – woo0-hoo! 🙂 And the entry for this 12yo is, drum roll please, still 78/100 with the same comment as the 2013 bible! Now, either the whisky hasn’t changed, which might be possible, or the author has been a bit lazy here. I have to wonder how much of the bible is simply copied forward year-upon-year. I suppose you could say the same about most dictionaries but whisky changes more frequently than words.

I’m yet to try this 12yo but I’m tempted now to track down an older bottle, pre 2012, to have as a comparison. I bet I end up loving this version because it will still have the Highland Park flavours, which are delicious!

Highland Park 12yo 70cl

2 responses to “Highland Park 12-year-old

  1. The Whisky Bible has a notation system that informs you of whether the review is based on a new tasting or not (just check somewhere around the beginning of the guide). I suspect Jim hasn’t re-tasted the HP 12 since the 2013 edition.

    I also bought a bottle in 2013 (having had it before), and I can reassure you, it was delicious. At times I felt there was an unusual note in there, but it was quickly enveloped by all those beautiful flavours, and as I got further down the bottle and the spirit no doubt opened up a little, I failed to notice the bum note at all. I’ll actually be posting a review of this on my own blog at some point in the future, but I just thought you’d like to know now.


    • Thanks Neil!

      I’ve been noticing Jim’s notation system as I flip between the 2013 and 2014 editions of his bible. I’m very glad you’ve enjoyed the HP12! I sometimes think that Jim’s taste buds have become too sophisticated, such that he’s finding things that were never meant to be found. Personally I’m happy if I can pick up on a small fraction of what he’s tasting, and better still if it’s all the nice points!

      I look forward to seeing your review and I’ll make a bee-line for your blog right now…..

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