Bought: Aberdeen Whisky Shop, 27th March 2017
80/100 – Whiskybase (from 1 member vote)
I do love the Aberdeen Whisky Shop. It’s a nice wee shop in my home town with great staff but….OMG, the website! It’s been sitting there with one page saying, “online shop coming soon” since about 2013. But this is a perfect example of how crazy the whisky market has gone in recent years. The statement “you must be online to make money” doesn’t apply to whisky. If you have a shop in the centre of Scotland’s third largest city you get enough walk-in trade to make ‘online’ become ‘on hold’ until market forces change. But it is frustrating if you find the Aberdeen Whisky Shop online and you don’t live anywhere near the city. At least they give regular updates about new stock via their Facebook page.
I hadn’t intended on buying this Glen Garioch but I was in the shop, it was there, and the rest is history. Generally I’m not a fan of immature whisky but after visiting Glen Garioch in 2016 I was keen to get more examples from the distillery. Distilled in 2011 and bottles in 2017 this 5-year-old was limited to 665 bottles. It has no added colour, and it’s non-chillfiltered but it’s a shame it isn’t cask strength. I suppose it’s a lot to ask for a mere £36 and 46% is a decent enough potency. Definitely one to be drunk as I don’t see this making much as an investment. The bottles aren’t individually numbered and it comes from 2 bourbon barrels rather than single cask. There’s no box and the label is very basic, which all says, “drink me” rather than “keep me for 10 years then sell me”. The independent bottlers Morrison & Mackay that make this whisky certainly know their marketing.
Tasting notes from Master of Malt:
Nose: Coconut, white oak spice, vanilla-forward barley.
Palate: Freshly cut grass, mint leaf and more sweet coconut notes.
Finish: Soft citrus and toasty oak.
Posted in Glen Garioch
Tagged 2011, 46%, 5yo, 70cl, Aberdeen Whisky Shop, Carn Mor, Glen Garioch, Highland, Highlands, Single Malt, Strictly Limited
Bought: Robbie’s Drams, 4th November 2015
88.25/100 – Whiskybase (average from 10 member votes)
Only 820 bottles of this Littlemill were produced by Hart Brothers to commemorate the marriage of Prince William and Kate Middleton in April 2011. It’s presented in a box, which is so pathetic it feels like it’s made from balsa wood. It’s lined with something resembling satin but there’s no padding behind it so the bottle can freely rattle about inside when transported. Bubble wrap required!
I’ve noticed over the years that there are a lot of bad examples of Littlemill whisky floating about on the market so it’s important to do some research before buying. Nevertheless even bad whisky can do well as an investment if it’s from a closed distillery and Littlemill stopped production in 1994, was dismantled in 1997 and destroyed in a fire in 2004. Thankfully my 20yo scores a brilliant mark of 88.25/100 on Whiskybase from 10 member votes. A similar 20yo by Hart Brothers bottled in 2012 scores 88.5/100 in the Whisky Bible 2013 so I’m confident that my dram is a good one. Clearly the independent bottlers Hart Brothers know a good Littlemill when they taste it!
Posted in Littlemill (dismantled 1997)
Tagged 2011, 20yo, 46%, 70cl, Hart Brothers, Kate Middleton, Littlemill, Lowland, Lowlands, Prince William, Robbie's Drams, Royal Wedding, Single Malt
Bought – Whisky Galore (Green Welly Stop), 11th March 2014
83/100 – Malt Maniacs (average from 6 reviews)
90/100 – Ralfy, of www.ralfy.com
Review: – Ralfy – Talisker Distillers Edition – YouTube
It’s rare to see Ralfy give a malt 90 or more but, keep in mind that his review is from 2010 and whiskies change. Nevertheless, Talisker is one of the most dependable distilleries for keeping high standards year after year. I’m sure if Ralfy was to do a re-review of the latest version of the Distiller’s Edition he’d still give it a similar score.
Keith Wood, a reviewer for Malt Maniacs, finishes his remarks by saying “quite different from a Talisker but most enjoyable”. Sounds intriguing! I’m yet to taste mine but I’ll take Ralfy’s tip and have some bitter chocolate with it when I do.
What shocked me most about Ralfy’s review was the price he paid for this Talisker. Less than 4 years ago he paid under £34 for his bottle. The cheapest I can find it today is £15 more expensive. That’s a price rise of nearly 50% in a very short space of time. If the whisky bubble bursts the owners of the distilleries have only themselves and their greed to blame. Even if this Talisker is excellent it’s only really a variant of the standard 10yo but at nearly twice the price!
Posted in Talisker
Tagged 2000, 2011, 20cl, 45.8%, Distiller's Edition, Highland, Highlands, NAS, Single Malt, Skye, Talisker, Whisky Galore