Using unique Straight Neck stills and more traditional Swan Neck Stills, and then aged in three varieties of American Oak casks – bourbon, refill and re-charred. Bottled at 46%, non-chill filtered and brought together by Michael Henry, Master Blender.
Appearance: Honey gold. A substantial tide mark quickly forms and morphs into many medium legs.
A viscous film forms and clings to the inside of the glass.
Nose: A good ABV balance, evident but at a level that allows the aromas to shine.
Brown sugar, roasted nuts, cereal, Christmas spices and dried fruits. The sugar sweetness increases as the glass matures, as it does it also starts to exhibit signs of stewed orchard fruits, such as red apples and pears.
Raspberry ripple ice cream appears after a time too.
Palate: A semi-viscous mouthfeel. The alcohol level, as with the nose, is a good level that makes itself known but allows the flavours to show through.
A spicy delivery in the form of black pepper and cinnamon.
There is a good helping of sweetness too: vanilla and honey cereal.
The sweetness turns somewhat confectionary in nature, with bitter chocolate and possibly some rum ‘n’ raisin.
Finish: The sweetness dominates the short to medium finish, but there are hints of the spice in the mix too. Quite a buttery final few seconds.
Overall: As we found with the 2 grain whiskies from Loch Lomond, this too is a belter of a ‘budget’ whisky. For £35 it’s fantastic value for money and recommended. Loch Lomond is shunning the trend by some distilleries to charge extortionate prices and keeping their whisky affordable, and I commend them for that.
It’ll be on my Christmas list for sure.