Distillery/Brand: Glenugie | Region: Highland | ABV: 49.6% | Color: Sunlight
Nose: 23 | Taste: 22 | Finish: 22 | Balance: 22 | Rating: 89
This is part 3 of three Closed Distillery whiskies that I tasted recently. After tasting the 1979 Glen Albyn and the 1977 Inverleven the third one in this lineup from Part Des Anges was this Glenugie.
Distilled in 1977 this single cask, cask strength is 29 years old. After almost three decades in a barrel it barely squeaked through being an actual whisky. Barely 50% ABV at the time of bottling. Another few years and the ABV would have definitely dropped below 40%
Established in 1831 Glenugie was quite a prolific little single malt distillery and in the late thirties even managed a total overhaul to it’s equipment with oil replacing the coal fires used to operate the stills.
Silent during World War I it resumed distilling soon after but 1983 saw it (and a dozen other distilleries) being mothballed due to extremely high competition and a drop in global demand for single malts.
The distillery has since been demolished.
My sample is from a brand new bottle and served at a cask strength of 49.6%
Nose: Chocolate. Honey. Toffee. Tobacco. Coffee. Oak. Seems like there’s some old school sherry involved here. But given that it’s a single cask may seem unlikely. Though there’s every possibility this may have been re-racked earlier on in it’s maturation. Let it breathe and it mellows out. Lemon. Rock salt. Cherries. Sherry.
Palate: Dark honey. Sherry. Chocolate. Coffee beans. Mint. Lack of literature on this particular expression leaves a lot of room open for interpretation. I’m guessing some Oloroso influence early on in life and then a re-rack into second-fill bourbons. I could be wrong or dead right!
Finish: Oak. Eucalyptus.
I’d say this is another fine whisky from Part Des Anges. The general consensus, when we tasted the three that night, was that all were at par with each other and generally of a high standard.
What was truly amazing was how all three morphed into completely different animals the longer you spent with them.
This will need your undivided attention.
Distillery/Brand: Inverleven | Region: Lowland | ABV: 54.8% | Colour: Pale Straw
Nose: 23 | Taste: 23 | Finish: 23 | Balance: 22 | Rating: 91
This is part two of three independent single malts I tasted with a group of whisky enthusiasts one evening. All part of the Closed Distillery series from Part Des Anges.
This is the closed distillery of Inverleven aka Dumbarton which operated between 1938 and 1991. Michael Jackson considered it a Lowland even though the nearby distillery of Loch Lomond is considered a Highland. Since it’s on the border of both it’s regionality will always be up for debate.
Inverleven was part of the the Dumbarton Distillery complex. At one point it was Scotland’s largest grain whisky producer churning out whiskies for blending for George Ballantines.
Some of the old pot stills of Inverleven were sold on to Bruichladdich shortly after the distillery re-opened, along with a lot of second hand distillation equipment. In fact Port Charlotte is made using the old Inverleven stills.
This particular Inverleven is a single cask bottling and served at a cask strength of 54.8%
My sample is from a brand new bottle.
Nose: Lemon. Citrus. Apricot. Mint. Fennel. Kaffir lime leaves. Lavender. Lemon sponge cake. Oxidization gives it a savory, leafy edge. Tobacco leaf. Fresh wood. Licorice. I like it.
Palate: Nutty. White pepper. Caramel. Limestone. Oak. Plums. The delivery is quite oily. Tobacco. Oak. Cinnamon. It’s quite a nice delivery. Full bodied. Takes to water quite well. Just a couple of drops, mind you.
Finish: Long. Oily. Clove.
This is yet another solid whisky from Part Des Anges. I’ve had only three of their offerings but the consensus that evening was that all three were rock solid.
Distillery/Brand: Glen Albyn | Region: Highland | ABV: 53.2% | Colour: Young Sauternes
Nose: 22 | Taste: 23 | Finish: 23 | Balance: 22 | Rating: 90
I hadn’t heard of Glen Albyn until I came across this particular expression at an event for my whisky club. Unfortunately, there was no way I could give it any sort of attention since the evening was a social one and I was playing host to around 75 guests.
I did, however, manage to pick it up for a small tasting session at my place, along with two other closed distillery bottles from the same independent. This series is known as the Closed Distillery Series from Part Des Anges.
Each expression is served at cask strength and is from a single cask. This in it’s self is quite a rarity and I was quite eager to tuck into it and see for my self.
The distillery closed it’s doors in 1983 following a slump in whisky demand and was subsequently demolished three years later. The site is now home to a shopping complex.
Independent bottles of this distillery keep popping up now and then but expect that to stop soon once stocks are completely depleted.
My sample is from a brand new bottled and served at a cask strength of 53.2%
The following notes are a mix of two tasting sessions over two weeks apart.
Nose: Pineapple. Papaya. Apricots. Very fruity. Garam masala. White flowers. Lime. Hint of oak. Oxidization opens up the nose even more. Butter malt. Grist. Mint. Chalk. Green apples. It has an extremely fresh and fruity nose and the longer it breathes the more layers it packs on.
Palate: Again very fruity. Pineapple. Honey. Demerara sugar. White pepper. Touch of oak. Citrus. It is gentle and medium bodied. Oxidization adds more. Herbs. Butterscotch. Ginger. All spice.
Finish: Long. Oily. Touch bitter. Garam masala. Touch of oak.
This is quite an interesting whisky. It was a hit at the tasting and for some was the top performer of the evening. While I quite like it I have to admit I preferred it more the first time around. I would have easily given it a score in it’s early 90s but the second session would be closer to late 80s.
So I’ll do what is fair and mark it on the average. Regardless, it’s well worth the experience.