MMI Lost Distilleries evening.

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I often find myself perusing around the various online whisky outlets even when I’m not looking to buy anything just to keep an idea of what’s on the market and prices and so forth. A while ago I started to notice these bottlings with what looked like distillery names which I’d never heard of made by something called the Lost Distillery Company. I was very intrigued but never got round to actually getting a bottle to try, there is quite an assortment and I was worried maybe I’d fall on one that wasn’t to my liking and so on.

Luckily I was not alone and several fellow members of our whisky club, Malt Mongers Israel, had also been curious, so we dedicated our monthly meet-up to finding out what these bottlings are all about.

What the Lost Distillery company does is quite intriguing. They blend contemporary single malts to, recreate as best they can, whiskies from distilleries which are long closed and from which no spirit remains. They seem to do quite a bit of research into these closed distilleries and look for indications of what their whiskies tasted like as well as look into their production methods to find clues as to their character. They also do not colour or chill-filter.

We tasted 6 of their whiskies at the club evening. I’m going to let the labels do the talking here, but I recommend checking out the Lost Distillery Company’s website, they have a lot of info on the history of each distillery on there.


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Towiemore

Aged 3 years*. 43%ABV. No colourant added and non-chill filtered.

*for lack of age statement.

Nose: Sour. Very malty. Musty books. Wet leaves. Boiled sweets.

Palate: Quite aggressive. A little dirt. Chocolate liqueur. A little salty.

Finish: Long. Sour. Dirty cherries. Nutty wood.

Would I buy this: No

Would I order this in a bar: No

Would I drink this if someone gave me a glass: No

VFM: 3/5

This wasn’t the best start to the evening. The whisky felt very sour to me, in a sourdough kind of way, which I do not like, and it had that musty kind of sherry profile, like a young Glenfarclas does, which I also do not like.


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Auchnagie

Aged 3 years*. 46%ABV. No colourant added and non-chill filtered.

*for lack of age statement.

Nose: Floral. Lemon curd. Malt. Ozone. Pineapple.

Palate: Lemon rind. Wet rocks. Light smoke. Light woody vanilla.

Finish: Long. Bitter. Candied fruit peel. Salt.

Would I buy this: No

Would I order this in a bar: No

Would I drink this if someone gave me a glass: Yes

VFM: 2/5

I found a lot of lemon in the character of this one. There was also quite a nice note of mineral smokiness to it. Still not really to my tastes, but a very interesting one.


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Stratheden

Aged 3 years*. 46%ABV. No colourant added and non-chill filtered.

*for lack of age statement.

Nose: Very malty. Malted milk. Stewed fruits. Jack-fruit. Light Vanilla creme. 

Palate: Lemon rind. Wet rocks. Light smoke. Light woody vanilla.

Finish: Long. Bitter spiciness. Fruit rind.Salt.

Would I buy this: Yes

Would I order this in a bar: Yes

Would I drink this if someone gave me a glass: Yes

VFM: 3/5

This is more like it. This one had a very interesting mix of lighter and more intense fruity notes along with some mineral smoke, which I found very intriguing. I liked it quite a bit.


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Jericho

Aged 3 years*. 46%ABV. No colourant added and non-chill filtered.

*for lack of age statement.

Nose: Cherry candy. Salty toffee. Slightly sulphury. Banana. Slightly fishy (smoked). Pineapple.

Palate: Salty salty salty. Menthol. Cherry. Toffee.

Finish: Long. Cough syrup and salty toffee. Woodspice.

Would I buy this: No

Would I order this in a bar: Yes

Would I drink this if someone gave me a glass: Yes

VFM: 3/5

This wasn’t to my tastes, but it certainly was interesting. There was quite an interesting sherry character to it that played with the slightly smoky and slightly salty flavours in a very unique way.


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Gerston 

Aged 3 years*. 46%ABV. No colourant added and non-chill filtered.

*for lack of age statement.

Nose: Dirty. Waxy fruits. Grapey. Light wood. White wine tannins. Custard.

Palate: Dry wall. Plaster of Paris. Dust. Pineapple. Woodspice. Chilli.

Finish: Long. Very dirty. Very dusty. Woodspice. Woody vanilla.

Would I buy this: Yes

Would I order this in a bar: Yes

Would I drink this if someone gave me a glass: Yes

VFM: 4/5

Like Goldilocks I finally found something that was just right. This was a wonderfully dirty-tasting dram, full of notes that remind one of an artisan’s shop or building site along with some really nice vanilla notes.


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Lossit

Aged 3 years*. 43%ABV. No colourant added and non-chill filtered.

*for lack of age statement.

Nose: Coal dust. Pears. Caramel pudding. Banana bread. Fresh olives.

Palate: Salt. Wet rocks. Toffee. Mineral peat. Lemon peel. Woodspice.

Finish: Long. Salty. Smoky. Rotting marine wood.

Would I buy this: Yes

Would I order this in a bar: Yes

Would I drink this if someone gave me a glass: Yes

VFM: 4/5

I liked this one most of all. Styled on an old Islay distillery, it was delightfully peaty along with some of that thick sweetness characteristic of a good, young Islay malt. Yummy.


I noticed a few common aspects in all of the whiskies, possibly indicative of the common sources for their malts, and they were all very full bodied and felt quite thick, even the ones at 43% ABV.

In all a very interesting time. I really like the whole concept behind the Lost Distillery Company. I obviously didn’t find all of the whiskies to my liking as there was quite a range, but there were some real stars here, especially considering the relatively low price of some.

 

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