Google A Trio Of Deanston

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Hi, this is one of our (almost) daily tastings. Santé!

March 24, 2018





Angus's Corner
From our casual Scottish correspondent
and guest taster Angus MacRaild
A Trio Of Deanston
What’s to say about humble Deanston? Well, they have a rather astonishing and very cavernous warehouse that looks more like some kind of gothic Sherry Bodega than a traditional dunnage warehouse. But then, of course, Deanston was converted from an old mill in 1967. But enough trivia, let’s try three of them today...


Deanston 19 yo 1997/2016 (52.6%, The Whisky Cask, Bourbon cask) Deanston 19 yo 1997/2016 (52.6%, The Whisky Cask, Bourbon cask)
Colour: Light gold. Nose: Sourdough bread and butter. With plenty sage, chives and cereals such as shredded wheat. A lemony yeastiness underneath and then more cereal notes such as fresh malt and milky cornflakes. Some aspirin and a hint of lavender in the background as well. With water: Gets rather sootier, more mineral and some soft notes of damp soil emerge. Rather grassy and mossy as well, although still gently herbal. Mouth: Nice! Lots of lemon and barley water. A little chalk, some malty sweetness, buttered digestives, oatmeal, rice cakes, a lick of hessian. Some eucalyptus in the background as well. Very clean and quite pleasant. With water: a little more punchy and peppery with water. White pepper and lemon oil to be precise. Some white chocolate as well (or is this mental ‘colour themed’ suggestion?) A gravelly minerality and lots of fresh hay and a little honeyed porridge. There’s even a rather elegant waxiness to it after a while which adds texture. Finish: Good length. Warm croissant, soot, chopped parsley, sunflower oil, grass and a little lingering pepperiness. Comments: This session starts well, we’ve found a rather ‘braw’ Deanston.
SGP: 341 - 86 points.


Deanston 16 yo 1977/1993 (55%, Cadenhead Authentic Collection)

Deanston 16 yo 1977/1993 (55%, Cadenhead Authentic Collection)
Colour: Gold. Nose: This one is more buttery but also much greener and more ‘organic’. These notes of geraniums in a warm greenhouse spring to nostril. However, there is also a shared bready quality between this one and the 1997. But here you also have more wax, more wild flowers such as daisies and also a fatter and richer cereal quality. It’s still globally a rather austere and unsexy style (do the laws of physics allow such a thing as a ‘sexy Deanston’ in this universe? Discuss...) However, I do enjoy the richer and more waxy, oily and textured style of this one - it’s reminiscent of good old school highland malt whisky. With water: more butter, olive oil, bung cloth and a soft lamp oil note. Very lovely! Mouth: Starts good on digestives and malt bread but then veers oddly towards warm plastic and plasticine, taking a detour on the way at porridge, chalk and white pepper. It’s a tad acrid and a bit unusual I have to say (you’re in Deanston pal!). With water: at first it seems water sorts things out a bit with some nice watercress notes but then it swings back to acridity and plasticine. A little burnt bread, muesli and milky porridge. Tough. Finish: Medium in length and rather peppery and still a bit acrid and plasticky. Comments: Ahh, Deanston... it all started out so well too. Not that this is a particular disaster mind you, the nose is certainly quite lovely, but it’s what Whiskyfun Senior might call an ‘intellectual’ malt. Maybe buy the mini rather than the 70cl...
SGP: 351 - 72 points.



Let’s see if sibling casks given a few more years can do better...  


Deanston 21 yo 1977/1999 (53.5%, Cadenhead Authentic Collection, bourbon hogshead, 216 bottles) Deanston 21 yo 1977/1999 (53.5%, Cadenhead Authentic Collection, bourbon hogshead, 216 bottles)
Colour: Gold. Nose: Doth mine nostrils deceive me? Is that... tropical fruit??? In a Deanston? No, seriously, notes of dried mango, a little guava and some pineapple at first. Then custard. Then a few more traditional ‘Deanston-esque’ characters begin to appear: aspirin; malt loaf; olive oil. But it’s really quite lovely I have to admit. Now butter, chives, hummus, green tea, lemon rind. It’s surprisingly complex this one. With water: a little straighter with water. More on grass, oats, honey, Deanstony cereals, a few mineral aspects. These fruitier qualities manage to remain as well though. With a bit more time there’s also a rather striking mustard powder note as well. Mouth: Still these rather beguiling fruity aspects! Some green fruits, ripe banana, a little kumquat (I think Deanston used to be a Kumquat mill, isn’t that right Serge...?), lemon rind, a chocolate lime or two, more vanilla custard, cherry bakewell. Again, surprisingly, and pleasingly, complex. With water: custard creams, candied tropical fruits, flapjack, a few wood resins and some earl grey tea. Finish: Long, and with a wonderful lingering fruitiness. Comments: Let me just check the label on this sample bottle... nope, definitely Deanston. A great surprise and a world apart from the other 1977. A dodgy cask in the previous bottling perhaps? Anyway, I was hovering around 89 but I feel for the fun and pleasure of it this one should be...
SGP: 531 - 90 points.


(Thanks Dirk!)  







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