Glen Scotia Single Cask 28yo 1989 (56.3%): The first morning of the Campbeltown Malts Festival on May 24th, 2017 we attended the dunnage tasting at the Glen Scotia Distillery led by master distiller Iain McAlister and whisky writer Charles Maclean. There were four casks pre-selected for us to taste: A 2001 ex-bourbon barrel, a 1989 refill sherry hogshead, a 2009 medium peated ex-bourbon barrel and a 2013 heavily peated ex-bourbon barrel... I want to say here that it was one of the warmest, most fun and most unpretentious tastings I have ever attended. We tasted our whiskies, discussed about them openly, shared our tasting notes in a beautiful dunnage warehouse with a room full of friends from all over the world and humbled by the extraordinary hospitality of Glen Scotia staff... At the end everyone was given the chance to choose a 200ml sample of their favorite whisky and we walked out with this bottle and also the 2009 medium peated ex-bourbon which I will be posting my notes here on the blog pretty soon as well. This 28 year old whisky is non-peated, distilled in 1989, aged in a refill sherry hogshead and bottled on May 24th, 2017.
Color: Yellow gold with thin but very slow legs.
Nose: Concorde pears, Honeycrisp apples and green hay. Fresh cut grass, Belgian endives and dandelion leaves. It's fruity, vegetal, a little bitter and chalky. Saw dust, pencil shavings and wild mushrooms. Adding water shifts it to a drier and less fruity place. Straws, caramel scrapings and toasted old wood. Fermenting wash (beer), malt vinegar and dusty old house smell.
Palate: Yellow grapefruit, bergamot and lemon twist. A few drops of water take the edge off of the high abv. Green tea, fresh tarragon and candied orange peel. Blood orange and tart raspberries. Old wood, dry leather and hint of pipe tobacco. They say that the whisky is not peated but there is a smoked character at the back. Like a campfire grill, fireplace ash or meat smoker. This is a beautiful whisky...
Finish: Stays forever... Slow fade of citrus peels, white pepper and apple vinegar with a tingling sensation on the tongue.
Overall: This is a stunning cask... Hard to believe that it is not an ex-bourbon cask but a second fill sherry hogshead. All the qualities I love in an old scotch: Vegetal, fruity, tart and tad bitter. A true belter... Thanks again to Iain McAlister, our dear friend Callum Fraser and Charles Maclean for a great tasting. Cannot wait to be there again in May for this year's Campbeltown Malts Festival and taste more of these hidden gems..!
|Glen Scotia Distillery // May, 2017|