Everyone assembles in the dining room for instructions & introductions. Hosted by the brilliant Billy Abbott, our late afternoon ‘welcome to Dramboree’ flight consists of Time Series and TWE exclusive releases. We start however with the show dram. Go!
- N: Starting with an inspired note from Zander, ”margarine-ice cream” – a note i’ve searched for in the past and will use in good measure in future. Also, i have sweet citrus, custard and lime tutti-fruity. I assumed this would be from a sherry cask but the nose would suggest not.
- T: Dry & sweet fruity bourbon number.
- F: Chalky sweet.
- C: Of course, it’s good. One of only a few young [non-Paterson-ized] bourbon-matured Fettercairn around at the moment. From a shared cask? – WB.
Scores 85 points
Glenfarclas 2007/2016 15yo TWE ‘103 proof’ [456 bts] 58.5% TWE
- N: Exotic fruity-sherry sweet with a hessian=brown paper bag, a white bread bloomer<porridge base, sweet-liqueur, fungal candy & a larder fustiness.
- T: Lovely (sherried) fruits straight off the bat and very Macallan-esque [only because that style is fresh in the memory from my visit to the distillery yesterday}, but it could be a number of sherried Speysiders. The palate needs a little water even if the nose doesn’t.
- F: Beautiful finish.
- C: Wonderful not-so-obvious Glenfarclas, though the sherry is still rather blatant. This can really outshine the standard 15yo [batch dependant], but then they are very different beasts. I’m positive i had this before and found it to be very good. I did, 89 points good in fact! Today a few less.
Scores 87 points
Benrinnes 20yo  TWE Time Series II [280 bts] 50% WB88
- N: Cream soda, lime, cumin seeds and a malty fustiness. Delicate throughout [refill action]. Light fruits with water. Spot on.
- T: Barley spirit wrapped in a gentle oily/oaky bourbon blanket. Quite the BFG.
- F: This grows rather than diminishes, as if the BFG just stood up. More porridgy/oaky fruits to the last with a little chalky cream to conclude.
- C: Grab a couple of cases so you never run out of this style. At 20 years, this is just right.
Scores 88 points
- N: Fleeting notes. It’s a sweet shop-bourbon-porridge job with custard fruits, the abv helping enormously. Some mushroom develops.
- T: Big one, compact dense & intense with strong oily barley and a little citrus.
- F: Easy finish, oily/fatty.
- C: Really good young one. Most likely from a first fill [200ltr] bourbon barrel.
Scores 86 points
[Tobermory] Ledaig 11yo TWE Time Series IV [319 bts] 48% WB85
Back in the day , Tobermory was originally called Ledaig. After bankruptcy in 1975, Kirkleavington Property purchased Ledaig and established Tobermory distillers, re-opening the distillery as Tobermory in 1979. From then on the Ledaig name was only used to indicate peated whisky from the now renamed Tobermory. distillery.
- N: Salty vegetal potato crisps, veg stock, pickled onions and onion boot polish – all with a soft yeastiness & oiliness.
- T: Dryer than expected though also oily-vegetal with a lovely easy barley chew.
- F: Smoked potato crisps with nougat.
- C: Spot on. Very SMWS Bowmore of late.
Scores 88 points
- N: Ooh yes. Silky sherry, a quirky nuttiness, fusty porridge, Bakewell tart,… Lots here, everything integrated.
- T: More oily sherry-sweet joy and again, lots here.
- F: Sticky-ish, lip-smacking sherry finish, intense till the last.
- C: Smells and tastes older than the 15yo. Really good, spot on again.
Scores 87 points
Balblair 1999/2016 Ob. Bottled for TWE cask #1712 51.9% WB86.17
- N: Similar lineage to the Glenfarclas but showing a touch more maturity on tobacco with sweet/dry picked onions.
- T: A soft yet thick-ish sherry bomb.
- F: Bit of a sherry shit at the end.
- C: The first-fill sherry trumps the distillate which is never good for balance. I found this to the case on my first visit, but I was far less tolerant to the sherry today.
Scores 84 points
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