A wardrobe of Whisky Blog - tasting notes, collection and best shops for buying whisky online A wardrobe of Whisky Blog - tasting notes, collection and best shops for buying whisky online
Login
“Because you can't buy happiness... but you can buy whisky and that's pretty much the same thing”

Read stories about Bunnahabhain of A Wardrobe of Whisky blog.

You can read here older articles posted in A Wardrobe of Whisky since 2009.
The articles are sorted by publication date. You can either browse here, check the featured articles section or use the search bar on the top of this page.

Whisky Tasting Session 2012-05: Blind fun!

By Miguel in Tasting , News , Featured , The Macallan , Bunnahabhain , Aberlour , Macduff

I have joined Jean-Marie Putz of whisky-distilleries.info and twenty other whisky zealots in the fifth blind tasting session of this year.

wts-tasting-sessions-2012-05

The principle is that whisky producers supply whisky they select themselves, according to their marketing goals. The sent whisky bottles are sampled and sent to about 20 tasters who write their impressions about every whisky. Their impressions and their quotation are published in Whisky distilleries blog.

The Whisky Tasting sessions are a flight of six whiskies tasted blind. Usually bottles are from independent bottlers that are really strong sellers in central Europe.

The samples arrived a few weeks ago in a supercool box. Each samples was 2.5cl and bottled in a small flask. Work has been been delaying me on tasting the six samples but finally this Thursday I had a few spare hours to taste them.

wts-tasting-sessions-2012-05-1

Usually I try to short the samples as explained in the how to taste whisky article, but this time I just decided to enjoy and go ahead. Mainly because if I sort the samples I will lack of time to taste them properly.

Sample N 1

“Unpromising nose but then a really delicious taste. Maybe Redbreast?”

89
Macduff 1980 Malts of Scotland
Impressive whisky from Macduff distillery bottled by Malts of Scotland from the 1980 vintage.

This single cask malt has been matured in a bourbon hogshead and bottled at cask strength at a whopping 54,1% abv.

This dram has a gold-like color.

Nose (87): more than average. floral, honey, spices, vanilla, citrus. Very irish style.

Palate (90): powerful. floral, honey, spices, citrus, vanilla, peaches, wood.

Finish (90): longer than average. floral, spices, citrus, honey.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Macduff 1980 Malts of Scotland with 89 points over 100.

Sample N 2

“Nicely floral... maybe a highlander? finished in sherry cask?”

88
Aberlour 17 years Anam Na H-Alba
A 17 years old cask strength single malt whisky from Aberlour distillery.
Bottled by Anam Na H-Alba at an incredible 60,6% abv.

This dram has a fino-like color.

Nose (88): more than average. honey, vanilla, citrus, toffee. Powerful toffee aroma. Like a Cadbury box

Palate (89): . honey, floral, spices, citrus, wood, chocolate.

Finish (88): average. toffee, spices, vanilla.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Aberlour 17 years Anam Na H-Alba with 88 points over 100.

Sample N 3

“Very nice sherried whisky. I think I have already tasted this one...”

89
Macallan 1989 Whiskies of Scotland
A single malt whisky distilled in the Macallan distillery.

This whisky has been bottled at 47.1% abv from the 1989 vintage by Whiskies of Scotland

This dram has a fino-like color.

Nose (89): more than average. toffee, floral, vanilla, peaches. Very closed nose but really nice.

Palate (90): smooth, powerful, oily. honey, wood, vanilla, citrus, spices, cinnamon, tobacco. I am sure I have tasted this one before... umm... no clue right now.

Finish (89): average. honey, tobacco, vanilla, wood.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Macallan 1989 Whiskies of Scotland with 89 points over 100.

Sample N 4

“Superb nose! I am almost sure this one is An Cnoc single malt”

90
Blended Malt batch 116 Dailuaine 1999 & Linkwood 1998
This vatted whisky, or blended malt whisky as the Scotch Whisky Association prefers, is the result of blending together a Dailuaine 1999 with a Linkwood 1998.

Bottled by Jean Boyer - Le Puits Whisky at 43%. This bottled belongs to batch 116.

This dram has a fino-like color.

Nose (91): more than average. toffee, vanilla, citrus. An Cnoc! It must be an Cnoc! Delicious!

Palate (90): smooth, oily. honey, vanilla, floral, citrus, wood, spices, anise, cinnamon.

Finish (89): longer than average. toffee, vanilla, citrus.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Blended Malt batch 116 Dailuaine 1999 & Linkwood 1998 with 90 points over 100.

Sample N 5

“Superb stuff! Peat and sherry marvel!”

91
Bunnahabhain 20 years old Wilson & Morgan
An awesome Bunnahabhain 20 years old bottled by Wilson & Morgan.

This incredible Islay single malt whisky has been bottled at cask strength at a very interesting 48.5 abv. A real crack whisky.

This dram has a tawny-like color.

Nose (90): more than average. honey, sulphur, peat, citrus, nuts. Old sherried japanese single malt style whisky.

Palate (92): powerful, oily. honey, peat, wood, citrus, spices, cinnmon. Very nice.

Finish (91): longer than average. peat, honey, spices, maritime.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Bunnahabhain 20 years old Wilson & Morgan with 91 points over 100.

Sample N 6

“Another sherry crack with a lovely nose”

90
Macallan 1990 Fino Sherry Hogshead Malts of Scotland
An interesting Macallan single malt whisky from 1990 vintage matured fully in a Fino sherry hogshead.

This whisky has been bottled by Malts of Scotland at 51.5% abv.

This dram has a amber-like color.

Nose (90): more than average. honey, citrus, spices, cinnamon, candies, smoke. Old whisky here...

Palate (90): powerful, oily. honey, spices, pepper, floral, citrus, nuts.

Finish (89): longer than average. honey, spices, nuts.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Macallan 1990 Fino Sherry Hogshead Malts of Scotland with 90 points over 100.

In conclusion

It has been a very nice tasting, really fun. And I have tasted two Macallans! Tasting the first one I was really really sure that I have already tasted it. Also really impressed by a very nice Bunnahabhain with its incredible peat and sherry style.

My favorite has been the Bunnahabhain whisky, very similar in style to the impressive bottling of The Whisky Barrel for Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.


The Peat Paradise: Islay from Bunnahabhain to Port Ellen

By Miguel in Tasting , Recommended , Featured , Laphroaig , Caol Ila , Lagavulin , Port Ellen , Ardbeg , Bunnahabhain , Kilchoman , Bowmore , Bruichladdich

Islay is an island in the west of Scotland that produce a style of single malts that you either love or hate: peated whiskies.

Gregor Haslinger Islay photo
(Photo on top of one of the Jura Pups looking south overseeing the Isle of Islay by Gregor Haslinger)

You may wonder why such an small island have so many distilleries and I hope this article enlighten you and share with us the passion for peated whiskies.
I have tasted already many of the whiskies created at Islay but I really wanted to taste them all in a row so I can compare them side by side. I hate when I taste blindly a whisky and I can’t decide if it is a Caol Ila ( most are ) or an Ardbeg.

So come with me in this trip around Islay in nine drams. Oh man! I am sure you can smell the smoke from there.

Read the full story »


Tasting of Bunnahabhain 21 years old Jubilee Malt II

By Miguel in Tasting , Bunnahabhain

“Marvelous! The first batch of this Bunnahabhain was a sherry monster, this one although matured also in a sherry cask is a different and even better whisky. I love it!”

91
Bunnahabhain 21 Year Old Jubilee Malt II Sherry Cask
After selling out the first batch in a matter of hours, here it is the second batch of Bunnahabhain Jubilee Malt from The Whisky Barrel.

This Bunnahabhain has been matured in a single fresh sherry butt cask #3.

To commemorate Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee (1952-2012) TheWhiskyBarrel.com present our second release of Jubilee Malt, this time Extra Regal.

Superb whisky! Really don't miss it even if you are republican!

This dram has a gold-like color.

Nose (91): more than average. some honey, peat, peaches, vanilla, tobacco, citrus. Lovely honey aroma! The way Bunnahabhain does! I like it.

Palate (92): smooth, powerful, oily. honey, peat, fruits, peaches, spices, pepper, vanilla, citrus. Powerfully awesome!

Finish (91): longer than average. wood, honey, pepper.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Bunnahabhain 21 Year Old Jubilee Malt II Sherry Cask with 91 points over 100.

Thanks to The Whisky Barrel for this great sample.


Bunnahabhain Jubilee Malt 21 years old 1990 Tasting note

By Miguel in Tasting , Bunnahabhain

“Like strong sherry character with a touch of peat? Then shout with me "God save the Queen!"”

90
Bunnahabhain Jubilee Malt 21 years old 1990
In honour of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee (1952-2012) The Whisky Barrel presents a limited edition Islay Malt matured in a single fresh sherry butt cask #35.

Distilled 24th December 1990 and bottled 10th February 2012. Just 90 bottles at full strength have been released featuring a rather splendid Crown Jewel.

This single malt whisky is a really awesome sherry monster from Bunnahabhain distillery.

This dram has a mahogany-like color.

Nose (89): more than average. peat, honey, floral, citrus, nuts, wood, cocoa.

Palate (89): smooth, powerful, oily. nuts, sulphur, honey, wood, peat, citrus, tobacco, pepper, salt. This whisky is a sherry bomb!

Finish (91): long. nuts, floral, honey, oloroso.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Bunnahabhain Jubilee Malt 21 years old 1990 with 90 points over 100.

Bunnahabhain 19 years old 1990 Murray McDavid Mission Tasting note

By Miguel in Tasting , Bunnahabhain

“Decent Bunnahabhain with a nice sherry touch.”

88
Bunnahabhain 19 year 1990 Mission
A release of 755 bottles, distilled at Bunnahabhain, matured in bourbon barrels and taken to Bruichladdich for bottling in 2009. A cask strength 19 year old bottled by Murray McDavid.

This dram has a cooper-like color.

Nose (89): more than average. peat, varnish, honey, nuts, dates.

Palate (88): powerful. peat, honey, floral, citrus, spices, nuts.

Finish (87): average. wood, floral, honey, citrus.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Bunnahabhain 19 year 1990 Mission with 88 points over 100.

Bunnahabhain 9 years old 2000 Adelphi Tasting note

By Miguel in Tasting , Bunnahabhain

“This is kind of peat and sherry whisky that I love. Gorgeous!”

91
Bunnahabhain 9 year 2000 Adelphi
This was distilled at Bunnahabhain in 2000, matured for 9 years in cask number 947, and bottled in 2010 by Adelphi at cask strength. A release of 554 bottles.

This dram has a mahogany-like color.

Nose (91): more than average. oloroso, nuts, honey, citrus, sulphur, rubbber.

Palate (91): powerful. wood, oloroso, nuts, leather, honey, citrus, peat, a little coffee.

Finish (90): longer than average. nuts, floral, honey, peat.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Bunnahabhain 9 year 2000 Adelphi with 91 points over 100.

Bunnahabhain 21 years old 1990 Exclusive for The Whisky Barrel Tasting note

By Miguel in Tasting , Bunnahabhain , The Whisky Barrel

“Looks like Bunnahabhain always does good friends with sherry casks. An interesting whisky.”

89
Bunnahabhain Burns Malt 21 year 1990 The Whisky Barrel
Burns Islay Malt matured in a single fresh sherry butt #51. Distilled Christmas Eve 1990 and bottled 31st December 2011. Just 120 bottles at full strength have been released featuring one of the Bard's favourite quotes "Freedom an whisky gang thegither!'

On 25th January Scots and expats and scotch aficionados celebrate the birthday of Scotlands national poet and Haggis the world over come out of hibernation for their special supper.

This dram has a tawny-like color.

Nose (90): more than average. honey, wood, peat, citrus, nuts, salt.

Palate (89): powerful, oily. honey, peat, sulphur, nuts, citrus, spices. A nice example of how peat and sherry can taste, even with a small off tone note of sulphur.

Finish (89): average. honey, peat, nuts, salt.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Bunnahabhain Burns Malt 21 year 1990 The Whisky Barrel with 89 points over 100.

Bunnahabhain 30 years old 1978 Murray McDavid Tasting note

By Miguel in Tasting , Bunnahabhain

“Forget whatever I have wrote about sherry and peat. I love this whisky! Superlative!”

92
Bunnahabhain 30 year 1978 Murray McDavid
Vintage Bunnahabhain selected by Jim McEwan (Master Distiller at Bruichladdich). This was distilled in 1978, matured in Oloroso casks for a whopping 30 years, and bottled at the Bruichladdich distillery in 2009 for Murray McDavid's Mission range. A release of 300 bottles of cask strength whisky.

This dram has a cooper-like color.

Nose (91): more than average. honey, peat, leather, spices, vanilla, tobacco.

Palate (93): smooth, dry, powerful. honey, peat, spices, leather, floral, raisins, cocoa, nuts.

Finish (92): longer than average. peat, honey, leather, citrus.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Bunnahabhain 30 year 1978 Murray McDavid with 92 points over 100.

Bunnahabhain 33 years old 1976 Celtic Heartlands Tasting note

By Miguel in Tasting , Bunnahabhain

“Nice Bunnahabhain with more peat than I am used from this distillery.”

90
Bunnahabhain 33 year 1976 Celtic Heartlands
Aged for a whopping 33 years, this is a single cask, cask strength Bunnahabhain from Master Distiller Jim McEwan's Celtic Heartlands range.

This dram has a amber-like color.

Nose (91): more than average. honey, wood, peat, spices, a little mango, candies. Rather good lovely nose.

Palate (90): smooth. peat, floral, spices, pepper, wood, honey. A bit woody but quite fine.

Finish (89): longer than average. peat, earth, citrus.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Bunnahabhain 33 year 1976 Celtic Heartlands with 90 points over 100.

Bunnahabhain 20 years old Single Cask Master of Malt Tasting note

By Miguel in Tasting , Bunnahabhain

“Peat and sherry isn't a blend I particularly enjoy but on the other hand I could spend a few weeks drinking this one. Heavy sweet oloroso character.”

89
Bunnahabhain 20 year Single Cask Master of Malt
A fascinating little Bunnahabhain distilled in December of 1990 and aged in a single Spanish oak butt for 20 years before bottling on the 7th November 2011. Astonishingly sherried, this stuff really reminds us of a good old Japanese single cask malt, and it has more than a hint of aniseed. Well worth a try!

This dram has a mahogany-like color.

Nose (90): more than average. wood, peat, raisins, vanilla, honey, citrus, liquorice.

Palate (88): smooth, powerful, oily. wood, peat, dates, raisins, nuts, citrus.

Finish (88): longer than average. nuts, leather, peat.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Bunnahabhain 20 year Single Cask Master of Malt with 89 points over 100.