Last weekend I hopped down to Speyside with fellow whisky Redditors u/unclebarldric and u/gregbenson314 .I didn’t take half as many notes as I intended and we got to try some really fantastic whiskies, so that is most unfortunate, but it was a fantastic trip, we saw some very famous distilleries and whisky bars (and some less famous ones) and Speyside is just a beautiful area to be in.
One of the whiskies I did take notes for was an interesting one, not a Speyside single malt, but a blend. A 36-year-old blend mind you, blended by Tatsuya Minagawa, who came to Scotland to learn about whisky, worked at the impressive whisky bar of the Highlander Inn in Craigellachie for nearly a decade and then purchased it a few years later.
The point of these blends (they’re released in small batches, 3 so far) is to show how good a blend with high malt content and good casks can be. This one was from the 2nd batch.
Aged 36 years. 51.1% ABV. No colourant added, non-chill filtered and bottled at batch strength.
Nose: Rich wood. Prunes. Dates. Vanilla. Wine cake. Glace cherries. Hints of pears in wine sauce.
Palate: Wood, bitter but not in an unpleasant way. Maple. Brown sugar. Red fruits. Dry tannins, kind of like Assam tea.
Finish: long, more of that good bitter wood, tea tannins. Stewed fruits. Pears in wine.
Would I buy this: Yes
Would I order this in a bar: Yes
Would I drink this if someone gave me a glass: Yes
This blend really did what it was supposed to do, truly a fantastic quality blended, not only made from good component whiskies, but expertly blended, it really shows off some of the better aspects one finds in an older whisky.