Port Ellen 10th Release

Overall rating
Whiskybase ID
Single Malt
Distillery Bottling
Bottling serie
Diageo Special Releases 2010
Stated Age
31 years old
Refill Sherry
Number of bottles
54.6 % Vol.
700 ml
Added on
27 sep 2010 10:16 am
UncoloredNon-chillfilteredCask Strength

Average value

€ 3975.04

132 × in wishlist

350 × member ratings

636 × in collection

Whisky reviews for Port Ellen 10th Release

37 users have left 40 reviews for this whisky. Average rating is 92.56 points.

  1. vlad78 scored this whisky 94 points Connoisseur

    The elegant smell of beeswax-honeycomb. Sweet, with just a hint of smoke. With light fruity citrus aromas that break through. Bright burning taste. It's like swallowing a fireball that goes into the honey sweetness of fresh apples. Amazing balance of the drink.
    • Nose
      95 95
      Perfect balance of fruit and honey, light smoke.
    • Taste
      94 94
      Fireball of sweet apples, oranges, and flowers.
    • Finish
      94 94
      Sweet, balanced crepe and marmalade

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  3. zzqfyl scored this whisky 94 points Connoisseur

    Lengend Islayer!
    • Nose
      95 95
    • Taste
      94 94
    • Finish
      94 94

  4. olegborgol scored this whisky 96 points Connoisseur

    Sea, fruit, peat, oysters, eucalyptus, well-integrated alcohol and a great finish 24-24-24-24

  5. Gusto scored this whisky 93 points Expert Senior

    Very complex, multi-layered, all aromas and the alcohol are incredibly well integrated. Elegant. Perfect? I like the boisterous PE better.
    • Nose
      94 94
    • Taste
      93 93
    • Finish
      92 92

  6. zombsta scored this whisky 90 points Member Junior

    Not bad, but definitely not as good as what WF score would suggest. Had better PEs.
    • Nose
      Neat: Paint thinner, red apple skin, some hint of the typical PE sweetness in the background
    • Taste
      Neat: Spices, salty, slight oilyness
    • Finish
      Neat: Short-Medium, lemon, warm peppery notes lingers long after

  7. sagara-kun scored this whisky 91 points Connoisseur

    It's very good but I can't help but wait for a little more from an official pe.
    We still have a very nice peat / citrus balance.
    • Nose
      91 91
      Very pretty nose. Very balanced and milimeter
      We have a light, fine peat. Cold ash.
      Nice citrus, fresh and zesty. Lime.
      Fresh mint, eucalyptus, camphor. Beautiful freshness. White pepper.
    • Taste
      91 91
      In the mouth it is powerful.
      Lemon, bergamot.
      Light crumb of bread.
      Cold ash, oily peat, smoke, cigar.
    • Finish
      92 92
      Long finish on citrus fruits, zest, a sublime ashy peat and a nice smoke. Tobacco.

  8. grinface scored this whisky 92 points Expert Senior

    Great whisky. Nose and finish are in the stars! But it's also great in the mouth. I especially enjoyed the sparks of Springbank. Full review (in german): https://keinehalbendrinks.de/2020/06/24/port-ellen-ad-lib/

  9. Borring did not rate this whisky Newbie

    Best whisky I ever had!

  10. HwiskyNut scored this whisky 96 points Connoisseur


  11. miguelangelo did not rate this whisky Newbie

    N- 96
    T- 95
    F- 95

  12. PRV scored this whisky 95 points Connoisseur

    Magic whisky ????

  13. kimyikshu69 scored this whisky 99 points Expert Senior

    Very balanced sherry Port Ellen, it's way too expensive now.

  14. hhc1212 scored this whisky 97 points Expert Senior

    Very balanced sherry Port Ellen.

  15. DrinkingWhisky scored this whisky 87 points Expert Senior

    Colour: yellow gold
    Nose: surprisingly fresh at the first encounter. Then some sweet pineapple combined with grassy/vegetal tones. Graphithe (as when licking a pencil, seriously!). Later one a bit of old paper and a slight mustiness as well, but thick apricot marmelade with some orange peel too. Smokiness almost absent but very faintly there.
    Taste: very fruity and mineral. Yellow fruit: apples notably, peach, pear, a faint hint of pineapple. Bonfire smokiness is notable here. It has a floral/perfume-y touch too. With a bit of water it becomes "dirtier" (in a good sense): more smokiness and a prickly spiciness, yet but turning more soapy as well though (which I don't like).
    Finish: more floral, a touch of aniseed, lingering with candied yellow fruit. Pine needles, lemongrass.

    Very tropical with faint smokiness. Good, certainly, but not fantastic.

    25-points score: Nose: 22 / Taste: 22 / Finish: 21 / Balance: 22.

    Tasted 29/12/2019 head to head with Adelphi PE 1975 24yo (WB ID 2271).

  16. Johannes de Silentio scored this whisky 93 points Member Senior

    Color: Mellow Gold

    Nose: It's not hyper-assertive, so I suppose with this age and pedigree, you could call it "dignified" and not be too hyperbolic. I'm always wary of finding some salient flavor profiles that other reviewers or the whisky writing public in general point out, but this is quite rubbery. I also do get leather. So, yes, I've read Serge's Port Ellen reviews and find that he's not off base in that impression here. Otherwise, there's a fairly standard, nice coastal character present, namely, briny lemons. The interplay between these elements as the dram has time in the glass is pretty impressive.

    Taste: Wow. That's huge. Not a particularly oily or thick mouthfeel, but the flavor concentration smacks you in the face when tasted neat initially. The dignity and subtly of the nose is out the window. Big notes of tar, rubber, etc. The lemons come through to keep it from skewing too much towards brimstone. Really outstanding that it has this power at 31 yo.

    Finish: Really long, smoldering ash.

    Comments: Before tasting, the nose had it in the 90-91 range. So, a terrific nose, but nothing too crazy as to take me out of the range that I'd feel comfortable scoring a normal dram that's just really good. Once you get above 91 or so, I start worrying about being too liberal with points. Well, the palate of this pushed me into that realm. This is glorious stuff. Maybe I'll feel more comfortable going even higher one day, but two points above anything else I've scored seems appropriate to me for now.

  17. bull10298 scored this whisky 89 points Expert Senior

    Yet another Special Releases favourite, the 2010 variant of this ?lost? Islay
    single malt is 31 years old and it also comes from a mix of ex-Bourbon and
    former Sherry casks. Initially dry on the nose, with smoke, then developing
    fragrant lavender notes, vanilla, old leather and a slightly savoury note.
    Finally a touch of smoky antiseptic. Very complex. The palate offers cereal,
    caramel, fruity peat and bonfire smoke. Fruitier with water and the peat smoke
    softens. Long in the finish, becoming bitterer, with peat, aniseed, rock salt
    and drying oak.




  18. wisekyofcourse scored this whisky 94 points Connoisseur

    in nose, it causes, a little on everything!
    spicy sweetness, fruit on pressed apples-pears, others on candied fruit, fine smoke, iodized salt, maritime, peat then occurs!
    the mouth is also complex, very fruity candied on oranges cooked with its zest, with a smoky and spicy and woody return!
    long, multi-sensitive finish with iodine, peat, oaky, fruity overlapping each other!
    short, really a great moment and a great pleasure!

  19. detachedblue scored this whisky 92 points Connoisseur

    Sure a masterpiece by the blenders in Diageo, great tropical influence and richer tastes.
    • Nose
      A masterpiece of blending, golden fruits, pineapples and oranges, marmalade, infused with honeyed flowers. More spices in this release, more bitter and darker, lemon oil, a perfect bond of sherry and peat.
    • Taste
      Richer than the 9th release, more flavours, concentrated lemon oil, concentrated pineapple juice, a lot of perfume ( in a good way, no CFP), the body is less oily than the 9th.
    • Finish
      Medium, wax and oak.

  20. Fight65 scored this whisky 92 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      92 92
    • Taste
      92 92
    • Finish
      91 91

  21. SFWC scored this whisky 87 points Expert Senior

    Quite the hype about this particular release of Port Ellen, thanks to our French friend and 'that' website. Well, is it better that other releases? I don't believe so. I actually like the 7th release a bit more and some independent bottlings by Douglas Laing. It is  indeed great whisky but don't be fooled that it is twice as good as other great whiskies because its twice as expensive or thrice! I've had quite a bit of fun pouring this blind at tastings and watching how it is outscored time and time again (by very educated palates) by mid 70s Caol Ila I picked up on auction for 300gbp. Slainte.
    • Nose
      85 85
    • Taste
      85 85
    • Finish
      85 85

  22. jocmueller did not rate this whisky Expert Senior

    Bottle # 2050 sold empty at ebay.

  23. lincolnimp scored this whisky 92 points Connoisseur

    Out of a H2H tonight this was the result. 

    Longrow 1974 56% bottled 1987 Samaroli   

    Glen Garioch 1971 Full proof 59.6% Samaroli    

    Ledaig 1973 14 year 56.3% Sestante Castle Label   

    Brora 4th Annual Release 1975 30 year 56.3% OB   

    Lagavulin 1976 37 year 51% OB   

    Port Ellen 10th Annual Release 1978 31 year 54.6% OB   

    Laphroaig 1967 27 year cask 2957 50.1% Signatory dumpy   

    Caol Ila 15 year Manager`s Dram sherry 63% OB   

    Ardbeg 1976 25 year cask 2390 LMDW 53.1% OB  

  24. lincolnimp scored this whisky 92 points Connoisseur

    Yes this is definitely one of the best OB PE of the yearly releases, still worth 93-94 points, very good.

  25. stefsel111 scored this whisky 93 points Connoisseur

    thanks for the sip Henri! :) 
    • Nose
      92 92
    • Taste
      94 94
    • Finish
      94 94

  26. Hvdree scored this whisky 94 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      93 93
    • Taste
      95 95
    • Finish
      95 95

  27. helmutgw scored this whisky 93 points Expert Senior

    Very good example of classic integrated smoke, which does not come along like a steamroller. 93 - 26.08.2017
    • Nose
      Alcohol, otherwise very closed, some smoke With the time comes something more.
    • Taste
      creamy, sweet, good integrated smoke, fruits - very interesting. Little alcohol.
    • Finish
      long, so

  28. lincolnimp scored this whisky 92 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      93 93
    • Taste
      94 94
    • Finish
      93 93

  29. lincolnimp scored this whisky 92 points Connoisseur

    As good as I remember it, one of the better annual releases, this was a good buy.
    • Nose
      nice peat mixed in with fruit is my first thought. It is a little farm yardy like peaty Brora can be.

      Apple, plum, hints of pineapple and peat with warm biscuit smells in the mix.
    • Taste
      Wow, much sharper than I remember but it is not a burning sharpness more restrained power.

      Peach, pear but mainly apple is the fruit element.
    • Finish
      Long, good peat and perfectly balanced

  30. wheatfield scored this whisky 93 points Expert Junior

    Same pale/medium gold color that many of the early 80s distilled bottles have. Poured a few glasses of this, enjoying it next to a rather inferior Old Bothwell 1982 Port Ellen. Nose is exceptionally balanced with raw oyster shell, sea air, lemon drop, great peat smoke, some kind of rubber chemical, soft tropical fruits. Mouth is initially kind of soft but really swells nicely with layers and layers of peat smoke. Really pleasant chemical/rubber like flavors going on, with ginger, wasabi, smoked nuts. Grains seem fresh and pronounced. Creamy palate. As it opens more a delicate almond aroma starts to come out, and some sweet vanilla. A bit pleasantly musty too.
    • Nose
      93 93
    • Taste
      92 92
    • Finish
      95 95

  31. barryfox915 scored this whisky 95 points Expert Senior

    Colour: Gold.
    Nose: Delicate, maritime, peaty, on seashells, graphite, some
    citrus and ashes.
    Taste: Mineral, slightly citric, maritime, smoky, peaty, on
    cold ashes and graphite. Complex. The finish is long, mineral, slightly dry and
    citric, ashy and complex.
    General Impression: I just loved this Port Ellen
    and the interplay between the mineral peaty notes and the citric-bitter
    flavours, like for instance the best old Glen Garioch. My favourite annual
    release so far.




  32. WhiskyJug scored this whisky 94 points Expert Senior

    Port Ellen 31 yo 1978/2010 '10th Release' (54.6%, OB, 3000 bottles)
    Only the half of the usual batch size this year, uh! I loved the 9th
    release from last year as much as the 1st from 2001 (WF93) but the 21yo
    ‘Port Ellen Maltings’ still rules my list of official PEs (WF94).
    Colour: straw. Nose: oh this is restrained and elegant! Exactly the
    opposite of some exuberant peat monsters, this is very subtle, on old
    papers, almond milk, shellfish, old slightly musty spice mix, soot and
    quite a lot of cut apples. I think I’ll try to compare this one with the
    22yo 1978 Rare Malts one day, I seem to remember that one was a true
    monster- exactly the opposite of this new 1978.

    water: the beast still roars! Water woke up a tarry peatiness that,
    precisely, reminds me of the Rare Malt (that I used to call ‘the Pirelli
    whisky’ – nothing to do with the naked girls on the calendars). Mouth
    (neat): ah yes, yes yes! More vibrant than the nose and ueber-lemony,
    superbly zingy, ‘chiselled’ and kippery. Greatest notes of olive oil and
    marzipan in the background. Gets then ashier and saltier at the same
    time. I don’t think we used to know how PE would behave after 30 years
    of age, I think we have the answer. With water: perfection made whisky.
    Please call the anti-maltoporn brigade. Finish: very long. Superb salty
    aftertaste and a contrasting spice blast (carvi, pepper, cloves, bitter
    almonds). Comments: wow. To think that we’ll have all these new old Port
    Ellens to try in the coming years! And if PE was the peaty Islayer that
    aged best? Shall we soon see the revenge of the old lady on her
    thundering neighbours? Imagine there’s probably much more old PE than
    old Ardbeg around… SGP:367 - 95 points


  33. Ragazzo scored this whisky 96 points Expert Senior

    By now my BEST Whisky ever tried... and I´ve tried a lot...

  34. Jeep51 scored this whisky 95 points Expert Senior

    Excellent. Big aromatic power, very expressive. The whisky is perfectly balanced and the alcohol finally little present!
    • Nose
      Iodine peat, saline, spices. Soft whisky, lots of fruit: citrus in the head (grapefruit and lemon) and more exotic fruit, sweeter, softer. Some medicinal notes, vanilla ... Very intense nose.
    • Taste
      Very powerful! Wow. Big presence in the mouth. Peat on cold ashes, tar. May be foam. An earthy presence shows the tip of his nose in the middle of the mouth, then it also evolves to medicinal notes, spices, pepper ... Extremely complex and dense!
    • Finish
      Very long on tar, cold ashes and tea.

  35. Sonett scored this whisky 94 points Connoisseur

    Excellent PE
    • Nose
      Elegant costal notes supported by a deep nose of charcoal and smoke with honey, vanilla in the background.
    • Taste
      Enters with sweetness then a powerful hit of spices that turns over to herbs and a light saltiness.
    • Finish
      Long finish with smoke, ashes, bitter almonds, lemon peel and salt

  36. Furtia scored this whisky 93 points Connoisseur

    E.X.C.E.L.L.E.N.T. [5 STARS]
    • Nose
      92 92
    • Taste
      94 94
    • Finish
      94 94

  37. WhiskyNotes scored this whisky 95 points Expert Senior

    My first impression was to put this on the same height as my (so far) favourite Port Ellen 7th release. That one shows more emphasis on floral notes and vanilla, but both share a mix of feminine and masculine Port Ellen, if you know what I mean, and these are the most beautiful expressions in my opinion. After a direct comparison, the 10th release is wider and more complex, as well as a little more typically PE, so it deserves a higher score. We have a new favourite.
    • Nose
      Exactly the kind of Port Ellen I like. Peat as a supporting act rather than a show stealer. Quite coastal and sooty, but in an elegant way. Subtle candied notes, a little honey, yellow apples... some vanilla... sweet almonds... Lovely wax as well. Now that I think about it, I adore waxy notes and they're missing in too many Port Ellens but here it is! Bonus point. Faint medicinal notes as well. Traces of cured meat (cecina de León). Very complex and so smooth! Stunning.
    • Taste
      Again it doesn't come rolling in. Starts sweetish and spicy before going to salty, kippery and herbal notes. Quite medicinal and ashy now, with sharp lemon. Perfect development, with a crescendo from rounder notes to sharper elements, as if the nose was meant to mislead us before showing its true character. Again wow.
    • Finish
      Very long, ashy, with coal smoke, lemon and a bitter / salty combo.

  38. Feusi scored this whisky 94 points Connoisseur

    A lovely sea brize with a spicy smoke comes into the nose. Sweet vanilla, some spicy wood and of course a peaty smoke stays on the palate. This filling is not so "crispy" explosive on the tongue like eldery editions, but 31 years what you consider, this is a legend.

  39. johnfool scored this whisky 95 points Member Senior

    One of the best Port Ellen produced.

    Must be tasted.

  40. frankyboy did not rate this whisky Expert Senior


  41. GLEN MAUR scored this whisky 94 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      95 95
    • Taste
      94 94
    • Finish
      94 94


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