Bought: Online Auction, 9th October 2015
79.5/100 – Whisky Bible 2016
86/100 – Whiskybase (average from 29 member votes)
Distilled in 1997 and bottled in the autumn of 2010, this Highland Park (HP) was produced exclusively for the Taiwan Travel Retail market. Although it’s not stated on the bottle this is a 13yo as confirmed by Gerry Tosh of HP Distillery in the video below. Sadly it’s now discontinued, although for a collector that’s a good thing! Hard To Find Whisky are selling a bottle for £300 but bottles can be found at auction for less than £100.
Any whisky averaging above 85/100 on Whiskybase is clearly a good dram. One reviewer remarks “an outstanding and very typical Highland Park, the balance of flavours is just perfect”. Unfortunately Jim Murray isn’t as impressed in his Whisky Bible where 79.5/100 classifies The Sword as “average, and usually pleasant though sometimes flawed”. Mr Murray’s entire review consists of “shows its cutting edge for only a brief while on delivery – when it is quite spectacular. Otherwise painfully blunt.” He scores the taste 23/25 (i.e., 92/100) but it’s the nose, finish, balance and complexity that let it down. Thankfully that’s only his opinion. Clearly the majority of drinkers have enjoyed this limited edition from Highland Park.
Gerry Tosh of Highland Park gives us his thoughts about this dram on You Tube (March 2012):