This was the last whisky of the Tapuz Blind Tasting competition which ended last night. It really ended on a high note, what with a 30 year old whisky and all. After the high note of the night before with a 15 year old IB Ardbeg, no one thought the next whisky could get one up on it. But we were wrong.
A lot of guys guessed that there was some age on this, but no one thought 30 years. A fantastic way to end a really awesome competition. I didn’t do so well this year, 17 out of 23 (as opposed to coming 3rd last year), but it was well worth the experience. I mentioned this in another post but I really found that it can make you re-evaluate your senses and reminds you just how much of what you taste comes from other sources (i.e. what other people say they taste or what the label says). It was humbling, educational and so much fun. Again a huge thanks to Assaf for organising everything and putting us through our paces. I look very forward to next year.
Regarding the whisky itself, I’ve never tried anything from Glencadam. It’s a lesser known Highland distillery with only 2 stills, albeit of quite large capacity. It’s used largely as a component for the Ballantine’s blends.
Aged 30 years. 46%ABV. No colourant added, non-chill filtered and bottled from a single cask (no. 1226)
Nose: Rich wood. Some tropical fruit. Floral note. Bit of fruit leather. Some light aromatic herbs, spearmint, fennel and wintergreen. Some anise. Macadamias. Maybe an older first fill bourbon cask. Some oranges and jaffa cakes show up after a while. With water a big honey note develops.
Palate: Honey. Wax (Clynelish?). Bitter wood. Bitter citrus. A slight grassy note. Flowers. Copper.
Finish: Long, but light. Light wood. Bitter citrus. Wintergreen. Fennel. Slight metallic note lingers.
Would I buy this: No (When we hit the price range of whiskies this old I tend to be very picky).
Would I order this in a bar: Yes.
Would I drink this if someone gave me a glass: Absolutely.
I had no clue what this was, I could taste some age but it was also still a bit lively with that typical highland floral note still present, I usually have trouble finding it in whiskies over 21 years old. I didn’t think for one second that our humble competition would feature a whisky so old so I just picked a random 17 year old Clynelish IB.
This was a really lovely whisky and I really enjoyed it even before I knew I was drinking something distilled before I was born. It was rich and full flavoured and the wood was not overpowering the character of the basic malt, which often happens with old whiskies.