I have a W&M Port Ellen in my collection, cask #6769 [WF93]. It was the first bottle I bought at whiskyantique.com and it was the most expensive bottle I had ever bought, at the time. I had actually ordered cask #6778. When I asked them what had happened, they replied ‘[we],… keep this one because is the famous port ellen wilson and morgan‘. I didn’t buy from them again for years. As it turns out, they might have done me a favour. Serge writes about cask #6778 [WF91] ‘A very good Port Ellen, even if Wilson & Morgan’s cask #6769 was even better‘.
N: This is some serious whisky that’s going to give the Douglas Murdoch a run for its money. Compared to the instantly convivial Murdoch 13yo, this 11yo has a strong oily density to it, the abv hike playing a role in distinguishing this from our stunning appetiser. Not to say this isn’t also an instant delight. In fact, it’s right up my street with its moody, slightly cagey profile. With a clean tannic [raw, virgin] cooking oil base with some brininess comes the citrus quality which is again, complex and dense and not easily penetrated right away. Breaking through its harder exterior I discover a malt with a fresh and dynamic peat-entwined salty masticated pithy < citrus juice profile.
T: I found this one hard to put into words. Being so involved and rather spellbinding, I made a lot of ‘dad noises’ instead. Whilst offering a bit of everything from whisky’s rich palate, this PE possesses all of the usual/expected Port Ellen traits and yet the sum of those parts transport me away from descriptors towards an emotional engagement. And boy what a chew! – chew and a half.
F: Syrupy bitter lemon and plenty of peat into cigarette ash [< Murdoch], and plenty more bits and pieces besides.
C: From an early 1980’s distillate that saw only 11 years in wood [and another two+ decades in glass], this is some result. The same super-high score as the Murdoch, for very different reasons.