Time for some dinosaurs and one 20yo Christmas whisky. Its been a while since I had some mixed sessions, but s I have mentioned before, I believe sticking to only distillery verticals will make your palate work with blinders, and also, it can become a bit boring after a while. So, a much needed break now with this very unlikely session.
Bladnoch 20yo 1991-2011 46% OB Seasons Greetings
A christmas whisky in April... I had an uplifting Bladnoch session just a while back, and hopefully this will be another contribution to their rising star in my opinion. At Bladnoch they often makes bottlings to celebrate or commemorate whatever, I had one at 55% to commemorate the inauguration of president Barach Obama. A christmas whisky seems for many people to be a dark red and sweet sherry monster, I guess the color association plays a part. For me personally I like nothing more than to enjoy a cold decembers night with a young peat-bomb at about 60%abv. Warms so much more when its dark and chilly outside. Smells The color is light golden. It smells oaky, burnt wood, almond oil, minty, light, gloucester cheese. The taste is light, sweet licorice and floral, vegetal, bitter, sweet white wine, white rum, vinegar. The aftertaste is short and peppery. Gone within seconds.
Christmas never comes to mind in this experience, but its a drinkable lightweight whisky: 5
St. Magdalene 11yo 1982-1993 62% Cadenhead's
Another lowlander, from the long gone Linlithgow Distillery. I think such a young St. Magdalene is nearly impossible to find these days so I'm kind of privileged to enjoy this. Pale golden color. Some air seems to have drifted into the bottle as the whisky seems a bit hazy when just poured. Smells perfumy, oily, herbal. Not as pungent as I might expect considering the young age and high strength. The taste is creamy, cinnamon, vanilla sherbet, cream crackers, green tea, grassy. I believe this is the ultimate Lowland style whisky, and its packed with those mellow and humble notes. Reminds me of swimming in a pond on a rainy summers day.. hmm... too much nostalgia...
A whisky that shows St. Magdalenes doesn't need to be 20-something for greatness: 7.5
Coleburn 17yo 1978-1995 62% Cadenhead's
I think if there were to be a vote on which scotch distillery to revive, Linlithgow would be a much more demanded alternative than Coleburn, but its a funny thing, that many distilleries that are closed sees their heyday when much older stock are being released then what used to be put out when the distillery was working. That's just a part of the game, but it sure makes for some more or less earned posthumous patriotism. That has however not been the case for Coleburn. But I haven't tried enough of them to make up my mind. This is a very pale one, color of white wine. It smells perfumy, currants, vanilla, plums, honey, nectarine, seems to come from a very lively bourbon cask. The taste is leather and peppery, licorice, very dry. Gruyere, swiss cheese, sun dried tomatoes and dry gin. This is not bad, it's actually one of the nicest high strength whiskies I've ever come across. It seems to be about 50%abv, and hides the high alcohol level real well. But the palate is great too, a sweet and dry style that's rarely found these days.
I can't choose between the two at 62% in this tasting, both great whiskies: 7.5
Next tasting: Glencadam Distillery (and this time I mean it;))