This is the second part of our series, where we explore three Malts from different Regions.
This months picks are: From the Highlands a Fettercairn (formerly “Old”) then a Kilkerran from Campeltown (the first standard 12 year old should come out this month) and last but not least a Ledaig (from Tobermory distillery) representing the Islands. Sounds like a good variety! Let’s get dramming…
Fettercairn Fior, Original Bottling, 42% vol., 2016
S:4 G:3 P:1 / Color: light amber / Score:76
The nose starts quite floral with some Vanilla and a little Lemon. Dried Apricots and some classic Sherry notes. Then I get a salty breeze on a rocky beach, on the east coast of Scotland. 😉 The arrival is rather oaky and sweet-ish, a lot more simple then the nose would suggest. I also find some malt cookies (if that exists) in there. With water it gets a tad fruitier, some Oranges and a few Pears on the nose. Taste wise it gets a little sour and less sweet in the process. The feel of the oak has almost disappeared. The finish is medium long and a little drying. Could be better composed, if the owners would really care. Oh well…
Kilkerran “WIP 7”, Original Bottling, 46% vol.
S:5 G:3 P:2 / Color: gold / Score:85
Big Sherry nose with a hint of old wood cask. This is starting good. Love this straight-forwardness. A handful of raisins and dried figs. Orange marmalade and some Grandmas toffee. Behind all that is a whisp of smoke woven in, beautiful. The arrival is sweet and some good oak is there as well. I like this mouthfeel, kind of like melting a piece of milk chocolate in your mouth (a Swiss one). Good solid composition, not complex but well done. When I add water I get some dried Grass, a smoking fire in the distance and some candied fruit. Remember the smell of sitting in an old leather chair? …Yes, thats it. It’s in there! The water has unbalaced the taste, still nice but less intergrated. Sweet and a little oak is present. The finish is medium, staying sweet with a nice aftertaste of dunnage warehouse, just lovely!
Can’t wait to try the first standard bottle.
Ledaig, Gordon&McPhail, 46% vol., 1998-2014
S:4 G:4 P:3 / Color: white whine / Score:84
Interesting farmy nose, not as intense as the Kilchoman we had in this spot earlier. Cow stable, straw and hay. A little cold smoke (just faint), some ham, pears and unripe pineapples. I also find a whiff of salty Seabreeze by the ocean (could this be on the Island of Mull?). Taste: WOW!!! Ever had a farm in your mouth? Incredible. Me like… 🙂 Quite unique profile. Very smooth but a little thin. Some wet wood, cold smoke and bonfire ashes. Any fruits you ask? Well…Gooseberries! Water tones down the nose a lot, some citrus notes come out though. On the palate we get more smoke. A coal pile and more cold ashes. Not many animals left but interestingly the texture gets chewy! Definitely worth exploring this with water. Ends medium long and a little dry, nice lingering aftertaste of musty warehouse. Well done Gordon. Well done McPhail. A Whisky that will give you a new experience every time…