The other thing is the price - C$80. For that, I could get Craggenmore with change, 12yr Ledaig (gordon & Mcphail), Ardbeg 10yr (OB), or Macallan 12yr (OB).
This is the tasting note i wrote after a couple of times tasting it.
Nose: Overall light, sherry, slightly burnt oak, strong cocoa. quite complex.
Taste: Very strong and complex palate, lots of chocolate, very spicy, also fruity with citrus and raisins/dried fruit. It opens immediatly spicy, with a reasonebly hard mouthfeel but then goes over in a oily body with the fruit emerging.towards the finish it becomes slightly smoky with some vanille,anisseed (i dont know the translation of this, in dutch its anijs, im sure a dutch user will be happy to translate),dried fruit and strong oak. a "dark" taste overall.
finish: Very long, oily body turns into somewhat punchy smokiness, hints of sherry come back now and underlying some vanille,warm spyces and dried fruit. bitter-sweet at moments.
Personal opinion: 83% Very complex and not the usual Auchentoshan at all. The different wood types really complement eachother and each one comes back in the taste rather then neutralizing eachother. Overall not my kind of flavor, but something that shines on a tasting table.
I wrote this a year ago but i think its still true. occasionally i still drink this one when going out, its quite special. hope this helps.
ps, the price seems right for the quality to me. i personally find it better then Cragganmore 12, but you cant compare it with the mac or ardbeg in the same price, complete different taste. Knowing a litlle of your taste you probably best taste it in a bar first. This dram isnt one for regular drinking IMHO.
I've only ever had one dram of the Three Wood, about 18 months ago, and I didn't think it was anything special. Nice, but not spectacular, if you know what I mean? Put it this way - if you're going to factor $$ into the equation, well, I didn't think it was worth the price.
But I should also say that I've delved into the Auchentoshan "Select" a few times, and I've been very underwhelmed. So it would be fair to say that I don't have a great opinion of Auchentoshan. (At least the recent OB's, anyway).
In fact I have put down Auchentoshan as one of the more over-rated malts.
Frodo, it might be useful to have an Auchentoshan in the bar as a fairly representative lowlander.. but if the choice boiled down to personal drinking preference, I don't think it can hold a candle to Cragganmore.
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