Old Pulteney would not be something I’d expect in a blind tasting competition, most malt-heads are very familiar with the distillery bottlings (the ones worth drinking anyway) and independent bottlings are few and far between, so this was a complete surprise. Another bottle only available at the distillery, not only younger than all of their age stated expressions, but at cask strength too. I went with a young independent Clynelish bottling as it had some of the lighter notes one finds in Clynelish and I could tell this was very active stuff.
Initial impressions: Some lingering bubbles, light colour. Oily legs. Light woody smell.
Guess: Clynelish 2008 by The Ultimate (https://www.whiskybase.com/whiskies/whisky/101927/clynelish-2008-vw)
Aged 10 years. 64.2% ABV. Aged in a bourbon cask. No colourant added, non-chill filtered and at cask strength from a single cask.
Nose: Creamy vanilla. Paraffin. Balsa wood. Lemon zest. Dried pineapple. Sandalwood oil. Red chilli sauce. Pepper.
Palate: Very dry wood. More chilli sauce. Light fruits, apples, pears, hints of banana. White pepper. Liquorice pastilles.
Finish: Long. Dry. Pepper sauce. Light wood. Fruit salad in syrup.
Would I buy this: No
Would I order this in a bar: Yes
Would I drink this if someone gave me a glass: Yes
This was a very active young dram. I did find it a little one-dimensional but the mixture of light fruits and those chilli and pepper notes kept it a bit interesting, quite a unique one.