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Cragganmore 12-year-old

Overall rating
86.86/100
votes
238
Category
Single Malt
Distillery
Bottler
Distillery Bottling
Bottling serie
Diageo Special Releases 2019
Bottled
2019
Stated Age
12 years old
Casktype
Refill American Oak
Number of bottles
18000
Strength
58.4 % Vol.
Size
700 ml
Bottle code
L9186CM003
Barcode
5000281059136
Added on
06 Oct 2019 9:50 am by maltaholic
UncoloredCask Strength

Average value

€ 97.76

82 × in wishlist

238 × member ratings

560 × in collection

Whisky Reviews for Cragganmore 12-year-old

60 users have left a review for this whisky and scored it an average of 86.86 points

  1. hs305 scored this whisky 90 points Connoisseur

    [November, 2019] Cragganmore is an overlooked distillery by many whisky connoisseurs which is a pity because it owns an interesting and delicious profile, if the selected casks support it and not fight against it...

    ...and these casks were very appropriate. If you like Ardmore go for this release because it offers a comparable profile with the extra Cragganmore kick. This is a really nice surprise out of this year's special releases and I could quaff this any day at any time (by the way, this is dimensions better than last year's 8-years old Talisker which was hyped by some experts - but again, there is no accounting for taste). I ordered two more bottles...
    • Nose
      89 89
      The colour is pale gold and the nose offers exactly the Cragganmore profile that I like plus peat. It is very impressive on both grassy-floral-fruity malt and spicy-herbal wooden aromas in balance with the delicious peaty notes which remind me of my beloved Ardmore. Hey Diageo, did you here the bell ringing about your previous extremely wood-driven hence unbalanced releases? If so, kudos! There is still a lot of wood impact in this nose but it does not overpower everything else but rather backs and supports all other flavours (as it should be).
    • Taste
      91 91
      In a blind setting I would have guessed this is a delicious Ardmore (due to the peat) but it offers more interesting fruity-floral impressions than Ardmore does. This dram is greatly chewable and releases a lot more flavours this way: fruits, sugars, honeys, waxes, toffee and more. This is very complex for a 12-years old, again kudos! The peat is of the mainland type (no maritime impressions but a warming bonfire in the heather fields) and fits perfectly to all other flavours. You can flagellate me but I like this mix very much.
    • Finish
      89 89
      The initial mouthfeel is warming with some hot moments (58.4% abv) and a minor coating effect. The finish is of medium length and adds some tasty milk chocolatey notes which are completely unexpected but very welcomed. No distracting bitter or drying moments whatsoever. Water releases chalky-mineral aromas in the nose and turns the taste sweeter and smoother, hence more quaffable. I like this dram both neat and reduced but in doubt I prefer the raw power of the neat dram.

  2. ARDBERG scored this whisky 90 points Connoisseur

    Holy smoky fruit bomb!

    I could and maybe should leave it at that. The nose is nothing shy of a 2004/05 Ledaig bourbon cask and in the mouth the fruit bomb explodes, releases a fruity freshness that just makes me smile - no Ardbeg could get there albeit the citrus inside... Some peaty Ardmore in the finish...
    Totally surprising. Gary Haggart (distillery manager), what did you distill here? Just fab!

    Schmeckt wie: ich will wieder an die Nordsee... (für Eingeweihte)

    2cl sample
    • Nose
      89 89
    • Taste
      90 90
    • Finish
      90 90

  3. JungleDram scored this whisky 89 points Expert Senior

    First impression:

    A 12-year-old tortured Speysider in cask strength. "Sober" looks rather less sexy. The bigger the surprise in the glass. A very complex and varied malt, which reveals more and more with each further sip. A warm-spicy mouthfeel, fruity, spicy and floral in equal parts with just the right amount of smoke. The bottle will not last long, so I imagine the perfect malt for the cold season.
    • Nose
      88 88
    • Taste
      89 89
    • Finish
      89 89

  4. Jackson05 scored this whisky 90 points Expert Senior

    This is really great stuff. Easily better than the Talisker 15 from the same release, but that’s preference. Clean peat, honeysuckle, stone/tropical fruit, great mouthfeel, fresh mint with more beeswax and fresh honey. Beautiful. Now to track down a bottle...

  5. VaryingViewpoint scored this whisky 92 points Moderator

    No water needed. Fabulous!
    • Nose
      91 91
    • Taste
      93 93
    • Finish
      91 91

  6. Totoro scored this whisky 86 points Connoisseur

    If this strikes you as too expensive, check out WID 124579
    • Nose
      87 87
      Herbaceous, earthy, loamy, with plenty of fresh wood notes (broken branches) yeasty elements (porridge, sour milk, pickled-cucumber brine), young / bright fruits (banana, lemon, pineapple, melon), some creamy, vanillin-rich ex-bourbon wood, and an overcoat of peppery and ashy-dry smoke. Wears its young age on its sleeve, but it's pretty complex for a twelve-year-old.
    • Taste
      86 86
      Salt-and-pepper potato crisps sprinkled with smoked paprika and served with a side of plain yoghurt. Toes the line between spicy/herbal and creamy/sweet; the fruits are way less present than on the nose, but there's some lovely citrus to be found here, as well as some soft florals. It says "refill" on the recipe, but to me, this feels almost like first-fill (and somewhat peppery) ex-bourbon wood - perhaps even too much so. Just a tad too creamy-sweet for my taste. But again: pretty complex.
    • Finish
      85 85
      Very sweet and creamy. I feel like less active or "additive" ex-bourbon wood would've been better here. Long, though, with wafts of smoke and recurrent earthy / herbal impressions.

  7. dRambo scored this whisky 87 points Connoisseur

    makes nothing wrong - but not my nerve, too modern, nose not mine, for easy drinking he is good with a swoop of water - but he is too expensive. With a lot of patience, I can still tickle out some great flavors here and there - but it's easier to buy a malt that suits me better. I rather like the old Cragganmorestyle from 20 years ago.
    • Nose
      88 88
      first nose without water - overripe partly fermented fruit - with some time, gentle hand warmth and a drop of water rather yellow melon in yummy, lemon and lemon - unfortunately also a bit too much pungent citrus oil for my taste - where I'll quickly be reminded of toilet stone and lime cleaner , Does everything go away over time - the peat notes become more beautiful -
    • Taste
      87 87
      light peat - tingling - fruity lemon, melon, cooked pear nice sweet and sour, light wood, grassy, slightly neutral bitterness - really tasty with water
    • Finish
      86 86

  8. Othorion scored this whisky 87 points Expert Senior

    Very light whisky, looks like white wine. But still a delicious, very tasty whisky, which is surprisingly complex for a 12-year-old, especially on the palate.
    • Nose
      86 86
      Smoky vanilla pudding, apples, pear juice, heather honey, a hint of lilac, grassy and a little smoked bacon.
    • Taste
      88 88
      Spicy, sweet, comforting heat spreads, creamy, honey, pear compote, nutmeg and some pepper, green apple, gooseberries, salt, honey all interwoven with a subtle smoky note. Delicious!
    • Finish
      86 86
      Warming, spicy with smoke and caramel.

  9. markjedi1 scored this whisky 86 points Connoisseur

    Cragganisker

    Cragganmore is Gaelic for ‘high rock’ and the distillery can be found in central Speyside, in the valley halfway between Aberlour and Grantown-on-Spey. While very popular with the blenders (it is an important ingredient of the Johnnie Walker Green Label for example), it only become well-known with a larger audience with the release of the Classic Malts, albeit only as a 12 years old. In 2014 it made its entrance into the Special Release as a 25 years old. This year we are treated to something special, for this Cragganmore is… peated!

    It’s a bit of a scare on the nose at first. Obviously one does not expect peat when nosing Cragganmore. But it carries it well. Initially very sweet – almost candy-like – on apples and pears. Then suddenly heather and peat kick in, giving me the idea that I am sniffing a glass of Ardmore or Ledaig. No, wait! This is more like Talisker. What is all this? But it is both fun and good, so no complaints here.

    On the palate, the surprise is even bigger. It is sweet and salty at the same time. Taste this blind and you’ll swear you are sipping Talisker – I kid you not! Again apples, pears, gooseberries and kiwi berries! But no matter how atypical this Cragganmore may be, it is very tasty!

    In the long finish I again get some sweetness in the guise of caramel or butterscotch.

    Definitely the surprise of the series. Recommended!

  10. dillz scored this whisky 90 points Member Junior

    One of the cheaper Diageo 2019 special releases but a surprisingly great dram. Quite the malty and smoky profile, no complaints at all. Goes down like [insert dirty metaphor here].

    As hs305 said, the peat/smoke is rather Highland (Ardmore) than Islay; if you are a fan of that not-so-maritime style go ahead and get a bottle!

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