Ancnoc Tasting X3, 25/4/21.

ancnoc tasting

This was a tasting of the anCnoc 12, 16, and 22yr old bottlings.


anCnoc 12yr old, 40% ABV

The anCnoc 12 year old is renowned the world over. Known as a must-have in any whisky drinker’s collection, it’s light and yet complex. Smooth yet challenging. And each twist and turn delivers a surprise. In fact, this is a dram that has something for everyone.

anCnoc whisky
ancnoc12

Appearance

This is very light in colour, white wine or straw in colour, has a decent swirl line thickness, and slow syrupy legs.

Nose

Sweet lemon, peaches, a light dustiness, a tea note, a touch of eucalyptus, there’s also some dunnage, quite a good nose for a 12yr at 40% ABV.

Palate

Surprisingly spicy to be honest, mixed with tropical fruits. White pepper, apricots, seared pineapple, mango and guava, very fruity indeed.

Finish

The finish is quite spicy with cinnamon, and coffee, it’s medium in length, and a little drying.

My thoughts

This is a very good 12yr old whisky in my opinion. It has a good mouthfeel, quite oily, it’s quite spicy with lots of fruit packed in. For an entry level bottling it’s rather good. For under £30 it’s a no brainer for me, i’d definitely have one.

Notes – This whisky is non chill filtered and natural in colour.


anCnoc 16yr old, 46% ABV

Wholly maturing anCnoc in American bourbon barrels allows the characteristic intense citrus notes to shine through. anCnoc 16 Years Old has been bottled in its most natural form, as it’s neither chill-filtered nor coloured. As a result, it may develop a light haze with the addition of water or if kept at a cold temperature. This haze is a natural characteristic of whisky that is unchill-filtered.

anCnoc whisky
ancnoc 16

Appearance

This is more of a mid gold colour, it beads up a little on the swirl line, and has good medium legs.

Nose

That extra 6% ABV is very apparent, and I’m getting meaty notes, the eucalyptus again, sweet lemons, lemon starburst sweets, there’s also a pasty/ cereal note, making a lemon cheesecake, it’s only 4 years older but it’s got much more oomph. Icing sugar, golden syrup, lemon meringue pie, I do like this nose tbh.

Palate

Nice mouthfeel again, and citrus tang, lemons, apricots, nectarines, eucalyptus, rich tea biscuits but mainly a real citrus tang. There’s a real sweetness in there also, it’s quite like a light rum cask finish tbh, very nice imho.

My thoughts

Another lovely whisky that’s still Ex Bourbon cask but offers more flavours and depth. Again i really like this bottling and would gladly buy a bottle.

Notes – This bottling is non chill filtered and natural colour.

anCnoc 22yr old, 46% ABV

Matured predominately in American oak, ex-bourbon casks as well as Spanish oak, ex-sherry butts, anCnoc 22 Years Old displays complexity and a wealth of character but its long lasting rich, smoky finish sets this dram apart from the younger offerings.

anCnoc whisky
ancnoc 22

Appearance

This is dark gold and burnished copper in colour, good swirl line, and faint medium legs. (i later amended this to syrupy thick legs.)

Nose

The Sherry cask influence is definitely here, wood varnish/oil, figs, Virginia tobacco leaves, and nicely married. There’s a faint perfume note, mince pie filling, cocktail cherries, dustiness and old leather. There is a custard note for me too. I know a few people who would enjoy this tbh.

Palate

Sherry spices here, with stewed dark fruits. Leaning into Christmas pudding with custard, cloves, dates, and no sulphur, HOORAY! It’s lovely and warming now the initial spice has subsided a little, ginger, cinnamon, anise, a touch of drying, liquorice, cranberries, espresso and blackcurrants. plenty of oak too.

Finish

Quite long, a real mix of Sherry and bourbon casks, sweetness against spice, nicely married and matured, not quite a Sherry bomb, but very nice. The finish is much like the palate, and right at the end a flourish of saltiness.

My thoughts

Mmmmm, a very satisfying, warming, and welcoming whisky. It has all you’d expect from Ex Bourbon casks and Ex Sherry butts, with the added bonus for me of having no hint of sulphur. Plenty of depth, well rounded, it’s not a sherry bomb, but is getting close. Again it’s a bottle i’d happily buy.

Note – This whisky is non chill filtered and natural in colour.


Overall tasting thoughts

AnCnoc whiskies have been on my whisky radar without me tasting them for far too long, this tasting was done to correct that, and to get a feel for what Knockdhu distillery produce.

I interact with many other whisky enthusiasts, on Twitter mainly, and i hear and read a lot about which whiskies are sought after and are highly regarded. These whiskies very rarely get mentioned, they are really overlooked, and now iv’e tried them i can’t understand why. I will be actively seeking more anCnoc whiskies in the future.

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