Ever found a scotch and thought I should keep quiet about this one? Yeah, you do. We’ve all had them. Probably goes against your base instincts to cry from the rooftops that you’ve found a corker because you know if you make a clamour and enough other people do the same* they’ll be a run on that bottle and it’ll be gone quicker than a bottle of Springbank Local Barley on release day BUT there’s times when you can say it with gay abandon because there’s more than enough bottles to go around and we all need good whisky. Nay, deserve it in these shitty times.
*let’s be honest, some nobody reviewer like me will have zero effect on whisky stock out there in the market.
This is a bottle worth shouting about. Like the Macallan Edition series, this is a sweet spot whisky for me. All the bits slide into place and leave me with that feeling I’ve stumbled on a something special?
“Oh Edmund! Can it be true? That I hold here, in my mortal hand, a nugget of purest green?”
Yes, better than Lord Percy’s nugget of purest green (that was pants) but no less exciting? Not quite, but it’s a close run thing. After the last Glen Scotia (which was my first) this is a different beast all together but no less enjoyable.
On the nose and it’s quick to please. There’s a richness buttressed with a toffee sweetness, bourbon wood and vanilla (even from a cool glass) make a warm arrival. For some reason I keep thinking of sherry and warm red wine and Port. There a fruitiness in the nose, it’s rather good. There a lot of compressed things that need to open up. There’s nice rubber, some cellar funk, a little herbaceous note (from an empty glass), Angelica and something faintly lactic. Toffee apples? There’s nice old varnish, it’s just a very comforting and comfortable nose. This is very cosy.
In the mouth (and I’m looking forward to this) and it all toffee and fine black tea, apricot jam, initially. It’s rich and gentle at the same time. There a brine and toffee combo that comes in but then the fruit on the nose also arrives, with varnish and, I can’t shake it, a wine or port note. Orange oils? There’s something of a warm vineyard about this scotch, a slight earthiness, maybe chalk, God it a good. This is a sit I’ll night and slide into a bottle kind of whisky. There’s no resistance, it’s all ‘come to bed eyes’ and have one more dram fare. Silky, soft and, crucify me for saying this, ‘smooth’. And the best part is there’s some sort of gently smoke wafting around the just makes the whole thing feel even more relaxed and more enveloping. It’s hard to fault.
Ok. Want to pick faults? You’ll could argue at 46% you’d want it to be 48% or 50% or cask strength but that’s about it. For me, this is almost spot on at 46% - it can take a bit of water but really, why bother.
So, a blind punt based on how much I enjoyed the Campbeltown festival 8 year old and I’m happy to say it’s joyous. A different beast but a great bottle.