New Lochnagar was founded in 1845. New Lochnagar? Yes. First Lochnagar was built in 1823, and burnt down by “the competition” just three years later. The distillery was rebuilt, only to burn down again in 1841. So the distillery was rebuilt again in 1845 as New Lochnagar. Lochnagar became Royal in 1848 (it lies very close to Balmoral Castle). No more fires burning down the house, but still a lot of construction going on. In 1906 the distillery was rebuilt yet again and in 1963 completely renewed.
Here we will try an independent Lochnagar, again a Blackadder Raw Cask with cask sediment in the bottle. This time no powdered char, but only small chunks of charred wood.
Color: Full Gold
Nose: Fresh, sea spray wich changes quickly into a damp wine cellar. Very spicy wood and vanilla. Resembles the sweet smell of a bourbon, high on rye. Mocha with a hint of ground coffee. Varnish and fresh mint leaves (not bruised). This smells like it will be very sweet. Very nice nose.
Taste: Strong and sweet, but luckily not as sweet the nose predicted. Butter caramels and the varnish is here again. The whole is very full bodied. Wood with Aspirin (wow, that’s a first). Nutty and ashy. The finish is drier than in the beginning, but still sweet enough to mask a lot of the wood. It doesn’t taste like it, but underneath it’s pretty woody. The dry finish ends in a little bitterness that reveals this woodyness.
In the end a quite nice Lochnagar. The finish is dryer and has some bitterness that seems a bit off compared with the sweetness from the beginning. Maybe not a 90+ scoring malt, but definitively a very interesting Lochnagar if you want a complete collection. Still, with these flaws in the finish I have a little soft spot for this Lochnagar, since the nose and the initial taste are really great.
p.s. This one is at the time of writing still available in Russia for 534 Euro’s