Glengoyne Week – Day 7: Glengoyne 37yo 1972/2010 (52%, The Nectar of the Daily Dram, The Nectar and Bresser & Timmer)

Oh no, we’re already at the end of the Glengoyne week, quelle misère! This is always the moment with a little bit of melancholy. That moment when you’ve been with a good friend for a week and you know he or she has to leave. Waving goodbye at the train station or the airport. Going home alone with a little tear in the corner of your eye.

We are going to see our friend from Scotland off with the only independent bottling of Glengoyne in this Glengoyne week, and the only distillate from the seventies, the rest being eighties and one fairly new Glengoyne on day one. Here we have also the only Glengoyne that was bottled by The Nectar from Belgium together with Bresser & Timmer from The Netherlands.

Glengoyne 37yo 1972/2010 (52%, The Nectar of the Daily Dram, The Nectar and Bresser & Timmer)Color: Sparkling gold.

Nose: Waxy and fruity, like an old Duncan Taylor Caperdonich from the same year. Honeysuckle, and lots of it. This is so good, it can be worn as a perfume, amongst Whisky drinkers that is. Floral. Given some time the Whisky noses more elegant. After the initial weight of the wax and yellow fruit (that dissipates), it becomes more fresh, like walking on the beach in fall. Clean, maybe. The wood kicks in too, I mean the wood is noticeable, also a slight toast to it. Spicy. This one has utter balance. Caperdonichs and Glengoynes from 1972, I you haven’t tried them already, do it! In a short while they’ll get extinct or priceless, and you’ll be the poorer for it, not having had the experience…

Taste: Sweet, fruity and full, I already don’t want to write more notes now, I want to enjoy my dram! Somebody has to do the job, so I’ll sacrifice myself yet again. Bugger! The syrupy sweetness goes smoothly into the spiciness of the wood. Lemon sherbet and more yellow fruits, some peaches, dried apricots? Cardboard and vanilla ice-cream. Just a slight imbalance in the finish, but who cares, putting this in your mouth again makes up for that, you’ll only finish the bottle a little sooner than you meant to do. The finish in fact is not that heavy too, a tiny flaw.

It is a great dram. I was only surprised that the waxiness together with the fruitiness are here in the beginning, just not here to stay in the nose. tastewise it does stay. Well picked by Mario Groteklaes.

So that’s it, we are done for the moment with Glengoyne, and we are done with the fourth ‘week’ on Master Quill. In the end this independently bottle of Glengoyne got the highest score, with an almost equally briljant and newer ‘summer’ edition in the runner-up position. Actually the odds were a bit uneven since this Glengoyne is from the seventies and therefore well older than the rest of the contenders, but who said it was a contest? Through the rest of the offerings reviewed in this Glengoyne week, it can be clearly seen that Glengoyne makes a high quality whisky with multiple facets to it. Keep up the good work!

Points: 92

Thanks go out to Nico for providing the sample!

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Bunnahabhain 9yo 2001/2010 (46%, Daily Dram, for Bresser & Timmer and The Nectar Belgium)

Bunnahabhain was founded in 1881 and the first spirit trickled from the stills two years later. The distillery was closed two times. The first time in 1930 (for seven years) and the second time in 1982 (for two years). In 2003 the distillery was bought by Burn Steward Distilleries, and they really started to market Bunnahabhain. First of all a series of new bottlings saw the light of day, and in 2010 they started to upgrade the core range with the 12yo and the 18yo. The ABV was raised to 46.3% ánd the new versions are unchillfiltered and no coloring is added. Way to go!

Bunnahabhain is known for being the least peated of the island, still like a lot of others, raising to the occasion by answering the call of the public for more ppm’s. Burn Steward therefore started to bottle a “Moine” expression, with more peat, mimicking pre sixties Bunnahabhain.

Color: Warm Orange, slightly hazy.

Nose: Rubber like bicycle tyres, but also a floral note. Very strange. Almost a strangely burnt Cognac? It smells like a grape distillate. Burnt sugar and toffee. Skins of hazelnuts. First whiffs were ehhhh, lets say, very atypical. I can only hope this will not be one of those harsh tasting rubbery fresh Sherry bombs. Luckily it does get a lot better when aired for a while. I would say, leave the cork off for a short while, a week or two maybe 🙂

Taste: Ash and toasted wood. Burnt sugar again, with its bitterness. This must be a somewhat mistreated or bad cask. And/or very poor Sherry. Sweet grains and caramel. Burnt sugar and rubber. Hint of soap. Thick and chewy. Simple and rather unbalanced. Dark chocolate with burnt bitterness. Quite woody in fact, something you could miss by the overwhelming Sherry influence. Was the cask really empty, when the Bunnahabhain spirit entered the cask?

Little if any distillery character. This could have been any spirit, from any distillery. No merits at all for Bunnahabhain, because this is a Sherry influenced grape thing. This is all fresh Sherry cask. And for me not even one of the nicest casks around. Is this nice? I don’t know. There shall be fans of this, but I’m not one of them. If you like Loch Dhu, then please give this a try.

Points: 76

Thanks go out to Nico for handing me this sample.

Caol Ila 21yo 1984/2006 (58.5%, Dewar Rattray, for The Nectar, Belgium, Refill Bourbon, Cask #6266, 251 bottles)

Caol Ila was founded in 1846 and rebuilt in 1879 and 1972, and in 1974 six new stills were installed. As of 1999 also unpeated whisky is made, which is nice, but also makes you wonder about single casks sold to independents since that date. Mainly used for the Johnnie Walker blends, but more and more used as a single malt due to the popularity of Islay malts. If I’m not mistaken the first official bottlings were the Flora & Fauna 15yo and a few Rare Malt editions. In 2002 the 12yo, 18yo and a cask strength were released and a few years later a Moscatel finish Distillers Edition and Moch were released. During that time also three versions of a 25yo were released, I know were pretty good.

This whisky was distilled on December 12th 1984 and bottled 21 years later on September 6th, 2006, and was bottled for Belgian outfit, The Nectar.

Color: Light Gold.

Nose: Fat Peat with ash. Very leafy, as in fresh, non-musty wet leaves and crushed dried leaves. Sweet and balanced. Green apple skin. Sweaty, tarry and with distant flowery perfume. Hints of wood. Crushed beetles, (not Beatles). Sea with some smoke and late (dare I say unexpected) fruitiness.

Taste: Sweet and chewy, with elegant peat. Nutty, almonds and some walnut. Some white pepper and plants. Also the sweat returns which fits the profile. Nice balance. It has some unexpected fresh sourness in the warming finish. No wood to speak of, but it has the wood spice. Finally, some salt on the lips, during the yellow fruity finish (apricots and peaches obviously). Astonishing.

I quite like this. Due to its perfect sweetness this is dangerously drinkable. Not as complex as I might have hoped, but hey, it’s not a super old Islay, and we don’t drink those for their finesse do we? Caol Ila in al its guises is a very nice alternative to all the other (increasingly expensive) brothers from Islay.

Points: 90

Caperdonich 35yo 1972/2008 (50.3%, Duncan Taylor for The Nectar Belgium, Cask #7424, 136 bottles)

Duncan Taylor, once Glaswegian brokers in whisky casks. Now of Huntly in the North East of Scotland. These guys have some massive amounts of great casks lying around. I know a lot of bottlings they did that are legendary. For instance: Tomatin 1976, Bowmore 1966 and Bowmore 1968, to name but a few, but there are a lot more. But it’s not only the vast amount of casks, it’s also the quality, and consistency of their whiskies, and grains. Duncan Taylor are definitively among my favourite independent bottlers.

Color: Orange Gold

Nose: Wow, double wow. This is fabulous! Old Bottle and überfruity. Apricots, peaches and sugar-coated oranges. Very organic and even a bit nasty, but all in a very good way. I guess we already have one of those legends on our hand. It has some earwax and wood, but not as much as you would have thought for something that’s 35 years old.

Taste: Sorry, but its wow again! It has a spicy punch after all those years. It’s palate matches the nose. The same fruits for me, and almost no wood and it hasn’t been an inactive cask either, just look at the color. It also reminds me of a very well aged perfect Zind Humbrecht Gewurztraminer. This would have been almost perfect, (because does perfection exist on our planet?), when the finish would remain somewhat sweeter and retain the fruityness and if it could have kept its balance some more. In the finish, the wood plays a greater, drier and a bit sour and thus unbalancing role. But it maybe nitpicking, because this Caperdonich receives a well earned…

Points: 93