Whisky 2017 – 82-84

Three outstanding drams last night. How do these become independent bottlings? Glenrothes really need to look at what IBs are doing with their casks – heavy and black sherry bombs!

The Glenrothes was bottled for 6 bars across Asia, including my local The Elysian Whisky Bar and my favourite Tokyo bar, The Mash Tun. It’s an incredibly heavy and complex dram – a huge congratulations to Kelvin and Yao and everyone else involved in this bottling. 

82 – Club Qing 1975 40 Years Speyside Sherry Fino Butt, Cask KT518
Wood glue, hazelnuts, vanilla essence, white pepper, cardamom meringue, pound cake, warm Coke. Golden syrup, loads of brown butter, stewed stone fruit, egg white, raspberry, raspberry leaf, milk chocolate mousse, tropical fruit, licorice. Wow!!


83 – Three Rivers Glen Garioch 1995 21 Years Whisky for Whisky Lovers Nagoya
Coconut rough, turps, cold butter, tropical fruit. Green grass, pepper, tropical fruits, peach Melba, salty butter, old pop corn (but not in a bad way).


84 – The Whisky Agency Glenrothes 1997 (for 6 bars including The Elysian and The Mash Tun)
Butter, rubber, musk, lpg, roast chicken gravy, leather, roasted shallot sweetness, grilled pineapple. Rose hip jam, musk lollies, tea tannins, old butter, cola, salt, coffee grounds, ice coffee, fried eggs, camomile tea. With water maple syrup, pancakes, breakfast fruits – watermelon and mint, brown sugar.

Whisky 2017 – 79-81

79 – The Warehouse Collection, Whisky Warehouse No. 8 Mortlach 1996, 18 Years Cask 4120S21
Marmalade, coffee, vanilla, leather, malty, tropical fruits. Musk, floral, honey, melted butter, crushed ants.

80 – Kavalan Solist Auld Alliance Cask S090608026A
Citrus zest, brown sugar creamed butter, white chocolate and ginger cookies, maple syrup. Huge butter, apple seeds, musk, lavender, orange blossom.

81 – The Whisky Agency Sherry Refill 8 Year Blend
Honey, dust, toast, gooseberry, toasted marshmallow, tinned pineapple, apricots. Honey, cream, pepper, dusty, baked bananas.

Whisky 2017 – 74-78 Signatory Tasting

74 – Signatory Dailuaine 1997- 19yo
Pineapple, acetone, apricots, dried apples, kiwi fruit, old champagne, egg shells. Salty, green herbs, burnt chocolate, fruity, slight waxy.

75 – Signatory Clynelish 1995 – 20yo
Matches, Forrest wood, leather, mushrooms and earth, maple syrup, nutty. Wood, chocolate almonds, salt, soap bubbles, coffee grounds, tea tannins.

144.2016 – Signatory Bunnahabhain 1989 – 26yo
Pine, orange zest, green bananas, iced coffee, slight medical, old shells. Dusty, flinty, cocoa, an old fire, white wine tannin, old apples.

76 – Signatory Glenlivet 1995 – 20yo
Ice cream cone, wafer biscuit, peanut brittle, ice cream, wood, cane sugar, golden syrup, rock sugar, apple pie, coco pops. Butter, coffee, sarsaparilla, musk, pepper, rose hip jam, tannins.

77 – Signatory Isle Of Jura 1989 – 26yo heavily peated
Leather, quite neutral, mushrooms, dry ginger, nutty, lemon zest, pine wood, walnut oil. Mango, bacon, ice cream, maple syrup, rock melon skin, salted almonds, lemonade.

78 – Signatory Ledaig 2005 – 10yo
Bonfire, medicinal, toasted bread, corn chips, smoked ham. Flinty, Dry, fire, Sherry, slight BBQ meat, apple seeds.

Whisky 2017 – 73-74

73 – Duncan Taylor Hemp Sparrow Islay blended malt 1997
Crushed sea shells, almonds, light and fruity, slight glue and barn yard, honey jumbles, apple pie, pizza. Crushed prawn heads, Christmas cake, salt, slight dusty.

74 – Bowmore 2001 by Whisk-e for Nippon Bartenders Association Ginza Branch bourbon Barrel Cask no 31928
Wood glue, pine wood shavings, fruit and soft caramel, dusty. Fruit, autumn leaves, salt, such fruity length with smoked salmon and vanilla cream, underripe apples, peanut brittle. Thick and chewy.

Whisky 2017 – 64-72 – Heartwood tasting

64 – Redlands newmake
Apples, rock melon, lemon zest, pepper, juniper, cucumber. Roses, apple skin, aniseed, green strawberries.

65 – Adams Distillery 12 weeks old young make
Menthol cigarettes, mint leaves, musk lollies, brown sugar. Prunes, proper smoked bacon, coal, pepper, salt, Japanese black sugar candy.

66 – Belgrove oat whisky
Dust, stones, barnyard, perfume, musk, menthol. Glue, boot polish, brown sugar, butter almonds, pickled onions (but not in a bad way).

67 – Heartwood 3 of 3
Caramel, musk, brown sugar, lemons, prunes, chocolates, stewed apple, ice coffee, old butter. Heavy, kangaroo poo, leather, beef stock, dusty, soy sauce, coffee grounds, tomato paste.

68 – Heartwood We are twisted cousins (Lark)
Prunes, raisins, pastry, strawberry and mango, pine needles, pastis. Menthol, dust, raisins, eucalyptus, slightly medicinal.

69 – Heartwood Beagle 4
Soy sauce, raisins, creme patisserie, stewed apples, beef stock. Raisins, prune, musk, salt, soy sauce, marshmallow, tomato salad.

70 – Heartwood Calm before the storm
Deep malt, soy, deep sweet Asian beef cheeks, huge chocolate, glue, turps, burnt pineapple. Glacé lemon, beef consume, leather, soy sauce, bitter dark chocolate, pine needles.

71 – Arran Madeira Cask
Gas, apricots, a malted chocolate, some sulfur and rubber, acetone, ants trapped in strawberry jam, marshmallow. Brandy snaps, some vanilla, roasted peanuts, old strawberries, zatar, mellows over time – the slightly bitter finish doesn’t help.

72 – G&M Glenturret 2002
Butter, cherries, licorice, toffee, fairy floss. Bit weak, grapes, toffee apples, slight cloves.

Whisky 2017 – 63

So my normal whisky tasting and note taking was interrupted by good conversation. Who would have thought? I drank some excellent drams and I must be one of the first in the Southern Hemisphere to drink Nantou from Taiwan. Get if you can, very worthwhile dram and a less “punch in your face” dram than Kavalan. 

I also had:

  • LMDW Highland Park 25
  • Acorn’s Clynelish 18
  • Whisky Agency Speyside Blend

63 – Nantou Omar
Oranges, honey, marmalade, vanillas. Super malty, brown bread, blackberries, egg whites, vanilla, pepper.

Whisky – 58-62 – Kilkerran Tasting

I don’t know what was going on with my palate last night. Really didn’t enjoy these Kilkerran when I have previously – the felt very underpowered. I was under an air-conditioner which cooled my glasses significantly and may have not allowed the whisky to shine. 

I’ve had Work In Progress 1, 3 and 5 before so they aren’t in my count for the year, but I thought it was interesting to show the progression. 


WIP 1 Kilkerran
Pineapples, wild fresh mint, glue, salt and pepper, arrowroot, rosemary. Cream, salty, malt cake, slight leather.

WIP 3 Kilkerran
Apple tree ash, fruitier, glue, hand cream, pencil shavings, wild herbs, pineapple. Light palate, cream, tobacco, peaches.

WIP 5 Kilkerran Bourbon Wood
Hand cream, ash, leafy, brown sugar, hand cream, maple syrup, slight peach. Butter, peanuts, salty, burn toast, slight cream and vanilla, leafy.

58 – WIP 6 Kilkerran Sherry Cask
Glue, flint, leather, salt, egg white, pencil shavings, hand cream, Sherry fino. Salty, leafy, gasoline, dry leaves, slight cocoa.

59 – WIP 7 Bourbon Cask Strength
Toasted coconut, lemon zest, glue, pencil shavings, hot ashes, bruised strawberries, eggy chocolate pudding. Toothpaste, preserved lemons, leafy, pencil shavings.

60 – Kilkerran 12
Egg white, Xmas pudding, lemon zest, tropical fruit, tobacco, herbaceous, sea salt, soap, apricots, oysters. Bananas, tropical fruit, olive oil, brown sugar, pencil shavings, leafy.

61 – Cooper’s Choice Ledaig 1998 Cask 0035
Hay, soy sauce, Xmas cake, burning plastic. Barnyard, burning plastic, rubber, sulfur, jersey caramel. Weird but pleased I’ve tried it.


62 – Noah’s Mill Bourbon
Bananas, ice cream with my mum’s chocolate sauce. Bananas, brown sugar caramel, salt, pretty simple.