Bought: The Whisky Shop, 18th November 2014
79/100 – Whisky Bible 2015
77.76/100 – Whiskybase (average from 146 member votes)
Another whisky bought because I like the bottle shape. If I’d checked the reviews first I might have talked myself out of it. All Jim Murray says in his Whisky Bible is “not rare enough” and his score of 79/100 ranks this malt as “average and usually pleasant though sometimes flawed”.
I’m a bit reluctant to include the score from Whiskybase because one member rates this Mortlach 19/100 with the comment “bargain”. That sounds like a complement, which suggests the 19 was a mistake (perhaps they meant 91?). Now there have been 146 votes, nearly 78/100 is probably fair. Comments include “plain and simple”, “very average quality. Way too expensive for what you get”, “all in all nothing offensive but quite underwhelming” and “a surprising character. The tastes and smells are well integrated and play off of each other well.”
In defence of this non aged-statement Mortlach, it scores 4/5 stars on The Whisky Exchange from 8 reviews, and 4/5 on Master of Malt from 5 votes, suggesting it’s not as bad as initial ratings imply, but these still equate to 80/100 so similar to the Whisky Bible and Whiskybase.
Perhaps not a whisky to wow the taste buds but if you like having your booze on display, the bottle is certainly very aesthetically pleasing. I’m sure I’ll have this Mortlach sitting on a shelf for many years, looking good and gathering dust. Then in 30 years when it’s genuinely rare and definitely old, I’ll drink it!
Here’s Ben of ‘A Dram A Day’ with his thoughts about the Rare Old on YouTube (December 2016):