Kilchoman Machir Bay (70cl, 46%)

Islay

The Kilchoman distillery (pronounced Kil-ho-man) is a distillery that produces single malt Scotch whisky on Islay. The distillery is situated on the western side of Islay, near the small settlement of Kilchoman. The distillery began production in June 2005, and was the first to be built on the island of Islay in 124 years. The distillery uses barley grown on site at Rockside Farm and malted at the distillery, as well as malt from the Port Ellen maltings and releases separate bottlings depending on the source of the grain.It is one of only six Scottish distilleries still doing traditional floor-maltings, and will be unique in having all parts of the process – growing barley, malting, distilling, maturing and bottling – carried out on Islay.

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The distillery first filled casks on 14 December 2005 and the distillery began bottling 3-year-old single malt in September 2009. Kilchoman also intends to release 5, 8, 10 and 12-year-old bottlings. The first official Kilchoman, the “Inaugural release” was released in 2009 and the first 100% Islay whisky released in 2011. The whisky produced by the Port Ellen maltings are peated to the same levels as Ardbeg, while the malt peated on their own floor maltings will be approximately 25 ppm.

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Machir Bay is a vatting of four and five year old whisky matured in first fill bourbon casks, married and then finished in Oloroso sherry butts for four weeks before bottling in early March 2013 This edition is described below

The whisky was poured in to a Glencairn glass, a half teaspoon of water was added to this dram to compensate for its relative youthfulness and it was left to develop for ten minutes. The colour was gold.  On rolling around the glass a curtain is left on the side of the glass with medium length legs sliding down the inside.

The nose has huge hits of citrus and dried fruit intermingling with vanilla cream. Layers of fresh peat smoke strengthen as the nose develops.  Very pleasant and surprisingly citrusy

The whisky is full bodied and heavy with flavour. Initial bursts of vanilla dried fruit and demerara sugar combine with the fresh warm smoke. This whisky is exceedingly well balanced and no one flavour dominates. Gentle sweetness and a slight bitterness becoming drier with a coastal feel in the mouth.

The finish is long and drying with initial vanilla and stewed fruits to the fore going to sweet peat smoke. A little oak bitterness appears!! Very smooth !!

Machir Bay is an extremely well made offering which has been bottled at 46% giving it added complexity and flavour. What makes this whisky stand out is the balance !! There is no one flavour overpowering any other thus enabling the senses to all that is contained in the whisky.

I cannot recommend this edition enough !! Well done Kilchoman !!

Cheers!!

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Bunnahabhain 12 Year Old (70cl, 46.3%)

Islay

 

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Deriving from the Gaelic for ‘mouth of the river’, Bunnahabhain was founded in 1881 by William Robertson and brothers James and William Greenless. A very smooth, easy-drinking Islay malt, Bunnahabhain (pronounced ‘BOO-na-HAven’) closed and reopened twice during the twentieth century and eventually production was limited to a mere few weeks annually following Edrington’s 1999 acquisition of previous owners Highland Distillers.

In 2003, Edrington sold Bunnahabhain to Burn Stewart Distilleries for £10 million. Included in this deal was the popular blend Black Bottle, whose contents feature a quantity of spirit from every distillery on Islay. Today, production stands at 2.5million litres a year. Of this, 21,000 casks are kept at the distillery for maturation and the resultant whisky will be used for the Black Bottle blend and for bottling as Bunnahabhain single malt. The rest of the outturn is sent for maturation elsewhere. In relative solitude, Bunnahabhain is the Northern-most Islay distillery. It sits in a large bay to the North East of the isle, drawing its water from the Margadale Spring.

A giant leap forward for Bunnahabhain 12yo, this edition was launched in summer 2010 with a jump in strength to 46.3% and a declaration of no chill-filtration and no added colouring. Enormous credit goes to Burn Stewart his faith in his craft for this offeringbunnahabhain-12-year-old-whisky

The whisky was poured in to a Glencairn glass, no water was added to this dram but it was left to develop for ten minutes. The colour was  gold with a slightly oily look on rolling around the glass. A curtain is left on the side of the glass with medium length legs sliding down the inside of the glass.

The nose is soft and fresh with with notes of mint and cut grass. This is followed by notes of the sea  . As the nose develops the notes of sweet sherry and sultanas  come forward more intensely with hits of malt. Subtle and complex

The taste is  very smooth, whith a overtone of sweet sherry. Like the nose it is soft and complex with hints of hazlenuts and malt mingling in with dried fruit and a little peat smoke. The location of the distillery no doubt contributes to the coastal feel in the mouth.

There is feeling of soft gentle seabreeze as one  tastes this whisky

The finish is long and sherried  going to dried fruit and malt. It reminds me of grandmothers fruit cake!!. A touch of brine appears. Very smooth

As an Islay whisky Bunnahabhain can come as a surprise to many. Athough coming from Islay this offering  is not as peaty or smokey as other distillery offerings from the island. Bearing that in mind it is an excellent extremely well balanced offering which has been bottled at 46% giving it added complexity and flavour

Cheers!!

Caol Ila 12 Year Old (70cl, 43%)

Islay

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Caol Ila is derived from Gaelic Caol Ìle for “Sound of Islay” (lit. “Islay Strait”) in reference to the distillery’s location overlooking the strait between Islay and Jura a spot originally chosen partly because of the clean water from Loch Nam Ban which still provides its main supply.

It was founded in 1846 by Hector Henderson and is the largest of Islay’s eight distilleries with a capacity of three million litres a year .

At first the distillery did not fare well, and changed hands in 1854 when Norman Buchanan, owner of the Isle of Jura Distillery, took over. In 1863 the business was acquired by Bulloch Lade & Co, of Glasgow, traders in whisky stocks. By the 1880s over 147,000 gallons of whisky were produced there each year.

In 1920 Bulloch Lade went into voluntary liquidation, and a consortium of businessmen formed the Caol Ila Distillery Company Ltd. In 1927 the Distillers Company acquired a controlling interest in Caol Ila, and in 1930 Scottish Malt Distillers Ltd obtained ownership of all the shares. The distillery closed during World War II, from 1942 to 1945, because of wartime restrictions on the supply of barley to distillers. From then, production continued until 1972, when the entire structure of the distillery was demolished. A larger distillery was then built, designed by George Leslie Darge in the same architectural style as many of his others with his trademark glazed curtain walls to the still houses, and production resumed in 1974. The company eventually became part of Diageo.

Caol Ila is one of the lighter Islay whiskies, pale in colour, with peaty, floral and peppery notes. In addition to being sold as a single malt, it is used heavily (around 95% of their production) in blends such as Johnnie Walker and Black Bottle.

caol-ila-12-year-old-whisky

The whisky was poured in to a Glencairn glass, no water was added to this dram but it was left to develop for ten minutes. The colour was dark gold with a slightly oily look on rolling around the glass. A curtain is left on the side of the glass with medium length legs sliding down the inside of the glass.

The nose is fresh with with notes of mint and cut grass. This is followed by notes of sea salt and a smooth smokiness as you would find on a high quality smoked ham . As the nose develops the notes of smoke and cigar  come forward more intensely with hits of lemon grass and dark spices.

The taste is  very smooth and elegant , an oily feel on the palate with the smoke peodominant , but there is a freshness to the smoke. There is no overpowering feel as the smoke blends with notes of tar and hints of cloves and citrus. Perhaps hints of mint rock come through.

The finish is long with christmas spices going to cracked pepper followed by the fresh smoke. Very smooth

This is Caol Ila’s entry level single malt launched in June of 2002. Bearing that in mind it is an excellent extremely well balanced offering that manages to marry together freshness and smoke much more successfully than many of its competitors

Thanks to Kvarterskrog Florens for the whisky

 

Cheers!!

Bulleit Rye (70cl, 45%)

Bourbon

Rye whiskey in my opinion is one of the most misunderstood drinks on the market today. A quick scan of the many reviews on the net reveals comments such as “a great mixer ” “rough” and “not for the fainted hearted” and “it makes a great “old fashioned.”   In the early days rye was the looked upon as something to warm you after a hard days work on the farm on a very cold day. A bit rough and uncultured. Thankfully this is changing and there are some really good ryes out there.

Tom Bulleit‘s “frontier” Bourbon has near-cult status among his admirers, and at long last the man has decided to branch out into a second product.

That product is Bulleit Rye, “the worst kept secret” in the whiskey world and a smashing way for Bulleit to double its shelf space.

The more well known sister whiskey Bulleit Bourbon has 28% rye in it already, making it the most rye-rich Bourbon on the market. Bulleit Rye has 95% rye (and 5% malted barley)  and it is made just across the Kentucky border at LDI (formerly Seagram’s) in Lawrenceburg, Indiana, and aged for at least four years before being bottled by Bulleit at 90 proof . Produced in small batches it comes with an enviable pedigree winning a Double Gold medal at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition in 2013.

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I poured the rye in to a Glencairn glass and left it to open for ten minutes, I added no water or ice. In colour the whiskey is caramel with a touch of orange when held to the light, on rolling around the glass it is a little syrupy leaving long legs on the glass.

The nose is surprisingly gentle for a whiskey with 95% rye content an a little caramel, cinnamon, and cloves accompanying the slightly briny rye

The taste is where the rye spice really appears. It may have been slightly muted on the nose, but on the palate it comes roaring out. Cinnamon, cloves, honey, a light peppery sensation and buttery toffee underpinned by smooth caramel. There is a hint of mint and sage before back to sweet caramel. Surprisingly complex and very easy to drink but still within the robust rye traditon of letting you know you are drinking whiskey!!!

The finish is long and dry with notes of caramel and vanilla very smooth with a soft note of cinnamon lingering long after drinking.

This whiskey is very good, it is surprisingly understated in the nose but complex and flavoursome on the palate. This is maybe not be a whiskey that would spring to mind to drink straight and many may will only ever encounter it as a mixer but it has beautiful flavours which challenge the senses making this a real sipping whiskey!

Thanks to Christian at John Scotts for the recommendation
Cheers!!

Balblair 2005 – 1st Release (70cl, 46.0%)

Highland

balblairBalblair Distillery is a Scotch whisky distillery located in Edderton, Ross-shire, Scotland.

Founded in 1790, the distillery was rebuilt in 1895 by the designer Charles C Doig to be closer to the Edderton Railway Station on the Inverness and Ross-shire Railway line. However, so good was the original water source that the rebuilt distillery chose to ignore a nearby burn in favour of the original Ault Dearg burn. To this day, the Balblair Distillery continues to use this original water source.

John Ross, the founder, ran Balblair as a thriving business and in 1824 he was joined by his son, Andrew. The distillery stayed in the Ross family until 1894 when the tenancy was taken over by Alexander Cowan. In 1948 the freehold was bought by Robert Cumming, who promptly expanded the distillery and increased production. Cumming ran the distillery until he retired in 1970 when he sold it to Hiram Walker. In 1996 Balblair Distillery was purchased by Inver House Distillers Limited.

Balblair has one of the oldest archives in distilling, with the first ledger entry dated 25 January 1800. John Ross himself penned that first entry, which read: “Sale to David Kirkcaldy at Ardmore, one gallon of whisky at £1.8.0d”.

It should be pointed out that Balblair Single Malt whisky is not bottled by age but is bottled in four vintages – 2000, 1997, 1989 and 1979 – with the design inspired by the nearby Pictish stone Clach Biorach, which is thought to be 4000 years old. The 1989 vintage won a Gold Medal and was judged “best in class” in the 2007 International Wine & Spirits Competition, and was recommended by Ian Buxton in 101 Whiskies to Try Before You Die.

The distillery is now owned by Inver House Distillers Limited, whose other distilleries include the Speyburn-Glenlivet Distillery, Knockdhu Distillery, Old Pulteney Distillery and Balmenach Distillery.

The distillery  has a visitor centre. Open all year to visitors.

But now to the whisky !!

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The Balblair 2005 expression is, matured in American oak ex-bourbon barrels

I poured the whisky in to a Copita nosing glass, added a half teaspoon of water and left the whisky covered to develop for fiveteen minutes.

The whisky pours a  light golden colour, leaving long slow legs flowing down the inside of the glass.

Initially the nose has notes of vanilla, butterscotch, and pears. This is nicely followed by  notes of barley , sweet soft fruits, and cut grass. Elements of toffee alongside hints of  liquorice, cinnamon, dried fruit, sea salt and the faintest suggestion of smoke

Complex and luxurious !!

Initial sweet candied fruits, followed by vanilla, toffee, butterscotch and boiled sweets. Freshly cut grass appears, alongside cinnamon, citrus peel , a hint of dark spices and fennel. back to toffee and vanilla with oak becoming more prevalent

A really flavoursome whisky that is exceedingly pleasant and warming. It is very well balanced with the sweet spicyness combining very well with the vanilla and oak .

The finish is medium long very clean and smooth with the spicy oak predominating.

I find Balblair 2005 be a highly excellent dram , complex, well balanced and the oak and spice balance is a stand out!! A dram to sit with at the fireside on a wet evening !!

Really enjoyable and highly recommended

Cheers!!

Talisker Storm (70cl, 45.8%)

Highland

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Talisker distillery was founded in 1830 by Hugh and Kenneth MacAskill, and built in 1831 at Carbost  they acquired the lease of Talisker House from the MacLeod of MacLeod. The distillery was rebuilt 1880–87 and extended in 1900. When a new lease for the distillery was negotiated with the chief of Clan MacLeod in 1892 the annual payment was to be £23.12s and a ten-gallon cask of best-quality Talisker. In 1960 after a stillhouse fire completely destroyed the distilleryand it now consists of 5 stills; two wash stills and three spirit stills. All the stills use worm tubs (condensing coils) rather than a modern condenser, which are believed to give the whisky a “fuller” flavour (itself an indication of higher sugar content). During this early period, the whisky was produced using a triple distilling method which would have given a smooth spirit, but changed to the more conventional double distilling in 1928. Talisker was acquired by Distillers Company in 1925 and is now part of Diageo. After the 1960 fire, five exact replicas of the original stills were constructed to preserve the original Talisker flavour. In 1972 the stills were converted to steam heating and the maltings floor was demolished. Talisker’s water comes from springs directly above the distillery.   The malted barley used in production comes from Muir of Ord. Talisker has an unusual feature—swan neck lye pipes. A loop in the pipes takes the vapour from the stills to the worm tubs so some of the alcohol already condenses before it reaches the cooler. It then runs back in to the stills and is distilled again. Talisker now has an annual output of three and a half million litres of spirit.

Talisker was the favourite whisky of writer Robert Louis Stevenson . In his poem “The Scotsman’s Return From Abroad”, Stevenson mentioned “The king o’ drinks, as I conceive it, Talisker, Islay, or Glenlivet.” I notice he did not mention Old Pulteney but that is a story for another place and time !!!

For Talisker the malt is peated to a phenol level of approximately 18–22 parts per million (ppm), which is a medium peating level. Additionally, the water used for production, from Cnoc nan Speireag (Hawk Hill), flows over peat which adds additional complexity to the whisky.

But now to the whisky !!

Talisker Storm is a non age statement whisky released at the beginning of 2013.

talisker-storm-whisky

I poured the whisky in to a Copita nosing glass, added a half teaspoon of water and left the whisky covered to develop for ten minutes.I was a bit careful with the water as I was unsure of how the whisky would open up. Caution was my watchword.

The whisky pours a  dark golden colour, leaving long slow legs flowing down the inside of the glass.

The nose is initially surprisingly rich with heavy notes of honey, burnt oak and more and more pleasant smoke , perhaps a little  Christmas cake spice and then some of the pepper associated with other Talisker offerings.

Warm pleasant warm and pleasant!!

The flavour is initially really quite full with honey and dark spices and a little brine, but then the smoke appears , but this is as from peat and burnt oak as you would find on a boatbuilders fire, not acidic but slightly sweet. A little black pepper and allspice appear at the end along with a little soft fruit sweetness .

A really flavoursome whisky that is exceedingly pleasant and warming. It is very well balanced with the sweet spicyness combining very well with the slightly oily smoke and brine.

The finish is medium long very clean and smooth with the peat and oak fire smouldering in the back of the mouth.

This is by definition a non age statement whisky but I find it be a highly excellent dram , intensive perhaps but that is not to its determent. It retains the peppery base of traditional Talisker and combines that with an explosion of very pleasant smoke.

Really enjoyable and highly recommended

Cheers!!

The GlenDronach 12 Year Old (70cl, 43.0%)

Highland

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Glendronach distillery is a Scottish whisky distillery located near Forgue, by Huntly, Aberdeenshire Scotland, and therefore is classed as a Highland whisky. It is owned by the BenRiach Distillery Company Ltd.

The distillery was founded in 1826 by James Allardes (referred to often as Allardice) as the second distillery to apply for a licence to legally produce whisky under the Excise Act of 1823, which passed three years earlier and which allowed for the distilling of Whisky in Scotland. Other sources credit a consortium of farmers and businessmen for the foundation of the distillery though this could include Allardes. The Glendronach distillery was purchased by Teachers and Sons Ltd around 1960 who increased the number of stills from two to six. In 1996 the distillery was mothballed and reopened again in 2001 by Allied Distillers Limited. In 2006 the distillery passed into the hands of Chivas Brothers Ltd (part of the Pernod Ricard group) and in 2008 it was sold to the BenRiach Distillery Company. Other notable owners include Walter Scott, who acquired it in 1881 and Charles Grant, son of the founder of the Glenfiddich distillery, in 1920.

The distillery draws its water from the Dronac burn within the distillery grounds. It has its own floor maltings and two wash stills in addition to two spirit stills.

The distillery is protected as a category B listed building.

In April 2016 Glendronach Distillery was purchased by the Brown-Forman Corporation. The deal included BenRiach and Glenglassaugh distilleries.
But now to the whisky !!

Ahh………. but first a word of caution

It should be remembered that Glendronach mothballed its distillery from 1996-2002. The post-2014 bottlings truly are 12 year old whiskies. If you bought this Glendronach 12 bottled in 2013, you were getting a 17 year old whisky as the whisky was distilled and casked in 1996. Those who enjoyed the amazing Glendronach 12 from 2010-2013 were getting a whisky older than the stated age. That is no longer the case.

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I poured the whisky in to a Copita nosing glass, added a teaspoon of water and left the whisky covered to develop for fiveteen minutes.Incidently this is a whisky that water should be added to, to gain the full experience of this heavily sherried whisky.

The whisky pours a  dark golden colour, leaving long slow legs flowing down the inside of the glass. Quite oily

The nose is initially very sweet with heavy notes of raisin, sweet sherry and Christmas cake especially one where the baker has added a little to much of his favourite alcohol !!! A little dark spice begins to build along with notes of cereal at the end.

A really warm  sherried opening to the whisky. Quite luxurious!!

The flavour is initially really quite sweet with sweet sherry dominant ,however notes of mandarin oranges and honey appear and as the whisky develops it becomes a little more complex with hints of dark chocolate and allspice appearing.

A little more complex as the whisky develops and exceedingly pleasant and warming.

The finish is medium long with sweet sherry dominating but with notes of dried fruit, orange peel and dark spice evident

This bottling was pre 2014 and I found it a beautiful whisky ,well made and very satisfying. I did notice that the whisky began to gain complexity the longer it was in the glass, so I would advise leaving it a little longer than 15 minutes  before tasting.

Enjoy this sherry bomb single malt.

Cheers!!

Crown Royal Canadian Whisky (70cl, 40.0%)

whisky

Crown Royal is a blended Canadian whisky owned by Diageo, which purchased the brand when the Seagram portfolio was dissolved in 2000. It consists of around 50 different whiskies.

The then reigning British monarch King George VI, and his wife, Queen Elizabeth, visited Canada in 1939. Crown Royal was introduced that year by Samuel Bronfman, president of Seagram, as a tribute to the royal visit. It was available only in Canada until 1964.

Today, Crown Royal is produced solely at the Crown Royal distillery at Gimli, on the shores of Lake Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. It was also produced in Waterloo, Ontario, until the plant there closed in 1992. Daily production of Crown Royal uses 10,000 bushels of grain  of several different types, namely: barley, corn, rye and wheat and requires 750,000 imperial gallons (3,400,000 L) of water. The whisky produced at the Manitoba distillery is stored in two million barrels, located in 46 warehouses over 5 acres (2 ha) of land. The whisky is then blended and bottled in Amherstburg, Ontario.

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To the whisky!!!

I must confess that the weather in Göteborg Sweden can take a little chill to my bones and having a little time to kill before meeting some friends, i decided to try something to warm me up. Crown Royal would do the trick I hoped.

I poured the whisky in to a Copita nosing glass, and left the whisky covered to develop for ten minutes.Incidently I am not sure what effect water being added to Crown Royal would have , but a little more of that later.

The whisky pours a light golden colour, leaving long legs flowing down the inside of the glass.
Nose. Initial faint notes of vanilla and fresh out-of-the-oven lemon pie. No spirity overtones here, very simple but pleasant.

Palate. Initially flavours of gentle vanilla and honey appear, then a little cracked pepper with oak and vanilla reappear in the background. Surprisingly delicate, light and warm. Very nice

Finish. Vanilla honey appear predominant but the finish is short if pleasant.

This whisky is a well-balanced if not very sophisticated drink that is in my opinion best enjoyed for what it is. One of the strange things about drinking Canadian whisky, or even Rye whisky is that many people look upon these as a base for cocktails or that they require a mixer to be palatable. For me that is a shame as whiskies such as Crown Royal have a unique character which should be enjoyed without any additions particularly on a cold Swedish evening !!!!.

Cheers

Mackmyra Svensk Ek (70cl, 46.1%)

Swedish whisky

mackmyra-svensk-ek-whisky

I received a taste of this offering from Mackmyra recently and in view of trying and really enjoying some private cask Mackmyra recently I was a little bit more optimistic when this one arrived in front of me. Firstly however for the non Swedish readership I should explain that Svensk Ek means Swedish Oak . This whisky is matured in barrels made from oak trees planted on the island of Visingsö centuries ago, oak originally intended for shipbuilding. Before being turned into barrels the oak is dried and worked to open the wood fibres to give a spicy taste to the whisky  

I poured the whisky in to a Copita nosing glass, added a half teaspoon of water and left the whisky covered to develop for ten minutes. The whisky pours a very light golden colour, leaving quite strong legs flowing down the inside of the glass.

The nose is initially quite sweet and spicy with notes of citrus, allspice, perhaps cloves in the background but theen back to citrus and fresh cut green apples .  Soft malt and and  lemon cake appear. there is quite a lot going on but it is a little understated and really quite nice

The flavour is initially quite soft with a pronounced elements of black pepper allspice and ginger but this on a fruity base of green apples pears and soft fruit but as the whisky develops on the palate it goes more to vanilla , highland toffee and milk chocolate before a little pepper arrives. There is quite a lot going on here

The finish is quite long with citrus and vanilla notes dominating, drying, then back to vanilla with a little chilli

The addition of water added to the flavour of the whisky but a little more, perhaps a full teaspoon would be ideal

This is a quite busy whisky which would probably gain by being left to mature for longer. However to to its credit it is very pleasant, well made and well balanced which would make a fine pre meal dram!!

Cheers

Teaninich 2004 – Connoisseurs Choice (Gordon and MacPhail) (70cl, 46.0%)

Highland

teaninich-whisky-distillery

The almost unknown Teaninich single malt comes from the village of  Alness in Ross Shire ,and it is a near neighbour to the much more famous Dalmore distillery. It was founded and built in 1817 by Hugh Munro on his estate of Teaninich Castle.Despite an initial difficulty of procuring barley owing to a high demand from illegal distilleries, by 1830 Teaninich produced 30 times more spirit than it did at its founding. At that point Munro sold the distillery to his younger brother Lieutenant-General John Munro. As an officer he spent most of his time in India, so he decided to rent the distillery out to various people until1898 Robert Innes Cameron took a stake in the distillery, and Munro and Cameron renovated and extended the distillery, investing £10,000 in the process. In 1904 Cameron, who also owned stakes in Benrinnes, Linkwood and Tamdhu, took over the distillery completely. After Cameron died in 1933 the distillery was sold to Scottish Malt Distillers. In 1970 the distillery was greatly expanded, and an entire new building with six new stills was taken in operation. The four older stills remained in operation alongside the new stills. The old side of the distillery was then updated over the next decade. First, new installations for milling, mashing and fermentation were built in 1973, and in 1975 the distillery added a dark grains plant, which produces cattle feed from the draff. In 1984 the old side of the distillery was mothballed, and the new side followed the next year, temporarily ending production. The new side of the distillery resumed production in 1991. In 2000 a mash filter press was installed in the distillery, which is unique in Scottish malt whisky production; all other Scottish whisky distilleries use mash tuns.

In April 2013 owner Diageo announced a new renovation of the distillery. They also announced a new distillery with 16 new stills will be placed next to the old distillery. The new distillery is planned to have a different name than Teaninich, and produce a separate whisky.

The distillery mainly produces malts for blending, and it is used in Haigs Dimple and Johnnie Walker Red Label. There is no visitor centre and there are no official bottlings of the malt

But now to the whisky !!

teaninich-2004-connoisseurs-choice-gordon-and-macphail-whisky

I have previously reviewed the  10 years old Teaninich in the Flora and Fauna range and now let us look at the 2004 Connoisseurs Choice edition  which was matured in refill sherry casks and bottled in 2013.

I poured the whisky in to a Copita nosing glass, added a half teaspoon of water and left the whisky covered to develop for ten minutes.Incidently this is a whisky that water should be added to, to gain the full experience of this quite subtle whisky.

The whisky pours a  light golden colour, leaving long legs flowing down the inside of the glass.

The nose is initially quite aromatic with notes of citrus and pear drops and candied fruit. This is followed by notes of  strawberrys and cream , the nose keeps reminding me of Edinburgh rock and entering an old fashioned sweet shop!!!!

A really warm  citrus opening to the whisky. Georgeous!!

The flavour is initially quite dry and soft with hints of chocolate and strawberries.  Now stronger notes  of Galaxy style chocolate and strawberry ice cream appear on the palate. A little digestive biscuit note appears as we approach a longish elegant finish where notes of chocolate dominate  and wisps of faint smoke appear.

Even at at 9 years old this is an extremely enjoyable  whisky which like the 10 year old makes one wonder why these beautifully balanced, well made single malts  are not more widely available.

Cheers!!