20 of us settled down to a last minute shift from our regular side room to the front bar which wasn't too cool as one has to be sensitive to the other bar users, no swearing and such you see. A bunch of Royal Mile Whiskies staff, other regulars and a couple of first timers made it a good mix. The first dram was the Asda 30yo blend - Tasgall 40%, we'd already done the 25yo and were fairly happy, this was the same. Definite qualities - shame about the strength and filtering. Colleague Martin commented that having saved a drop of each dram to retry at the end he was even more impressed. So beyond the short finish rather good.
Next was a very nice Old Smuggler 26 2/3 Fl. Oz. bottling supplied by Neil via a buddy who'd had it in his wardrobe for years. The company is pretty old and was taken over by Canadian Hiram Walker when manoeuvring into the 'Scotch' industry. Glenburgie and later Pulteney were acquired. It makes you think of how many hands brands and particularly a distillery might go through over time. The classic old bottled flavours were present which most of us appreciated - but not all.
Next we tried a Springbank port wood expression distilled 1989 and bottled 2002. I'd opened it a couple of years ago but felt it lacked the qualities necessary for pouring but after breathing and a degree of desperation I went for it. One table deplored it but the others were fairly happy. No hallmarks of Springbank or Campbeltown though - something this era of production seems to posses - I wonder why. We also tried a rather delish Lidl 20yo tawny port - only £20 even if just 50cl.
Nest was Raasay batch 2. I can't remember if I wrote up the batch 1 and the fact we actually tried the very Super Tuscan wine which had been in the the very casks used. Quite a unique experience for me and most of us I'm guessing. The cask were then re-used for an extended period of finishing for the peated single malt from an anonymous Highland distillery. Feisty stuff. The sour notes work for me but I'm a bit special for sherry casks. That same table weren't impressed and generally not so popular as the Springbank but plenty people enjoyed the unique character of a younger lightly peated malt finished in wine casks. I'm not sure how important it is to keep the distiller secret so I'd better keep my trap shut which is a shame as the distillery is pretty amazing. Raasay continues to move toward production and I'm happy to bring their rather special offer to your attention:- https://goo.gl/sztYRC
Finally a sherry cask peated Bunnahabhain 'moine' - massive.
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