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

June 1, 2019





Angus's Corner
From our casual Scottish correspondent
and guest taster Angus MacRaild
Two Invergordon
After the barrage of Campbeltown and Islay, let’s return to Earth with some humble grain whiskies from Invergordon. People often say to me: “Angus, why do you hate grain whisky so much?” To which I usually say: “Because I’m an evil snob out to spoil everyone’s fun! Now sod off!” And then I wake up.


Anyway, let’s try these Invergordons...



Invergordon 31 yo 1987/2019 (63.2%, North Star, barrel, 190 bottles)

Invergordon 31 yo 1987/2019 (63.2%, North Star, barrel, 190 bottles)
63.2%? Death to nasal cavities! Colour: straw. Nose: it’s actually rather easy all things considered it’s just that there’s not much in there beyond the usual grain suspects such as acetone, gym socks, plastic, foam banana, pencil shavings, hot vinyl and dust. What’s considered old for malt is often still rather young for grain I find. Some freshly laundered cloth and a scatter of cereals. With water: extremely dusty now. Some funny notes of cheesecloth, raw green pepper, sap and various cooking oils. Mouth: gah! Molten prit stick glue, varnish, burnt sugar, more plastic, acetone, sour cardboard. I’m sorry North Star, I love what you do but I am not a fan of this. With water: dilution improves things slightly but this is still far too acrid, harsh, spiritous and weaving this curious line between too bitter and too sweet. Finish: surprisingly long, but still full of this hot plastic quality. Burnt marshmallow, cardboard, damp grains. Comments: This is precisely the kind of grain whisky I really don’t like I’m afraid. I know quite a few friends who enjoy grain whiskies and argue that they do in fact have distillate character. If that’s the case then I feel that, in most instances, it’s a type of character that needs time and/or active wood. Give me one of North Star’s many excellent malts or blends over this any day.
SGP: 430 - 68 points.     



Invergordon 44 yo 1973/2018 (52.3%, Mancarella, bourbon barrel, 106 bottles)

Invergordon 44 yo 1973/2018 (52.3%, Mancarella, bourbon barrel, 106 bottles)
Colour: gold. Nose: richer and far more elegant, we’re some distance from the 87. This is all on gingerbread, nutmeg, cinnamon dusted buns, various freshly baked pastries, vanilla custard, orange oils and hints of youthful Calvados. I’ve tried quite a few of these early 70s Invergordons now and they’re often very good I think, same story with this one so far. With water: lots of baked apples, ginger in syrup, tinned pineapple, cloves and more generous helpings of expensive custard. Mouth: a rum in disguise. Lots of bananas baked in brown sugar, esters, dunder notes, briny olive oil (which feels very strange in a grain whisky) brake fluid, plasticine and even wee touches of medicine and bandages. There’s also a big sweetness from sugar syrup, bonbons, Golden Grahams cereal and cheap dessert wines. With water: still rather rummy and gingery. But now also add some green tea, lemon infused oils, carbon paper, fruit salad syrups and a lick of camphor. Finish: medium and quite sweet. Lots of fruity syrups, ointments, soft spice notes and more baked banana and breakfast cereals. Comments: Top notch rum! Seriously, these ester qualities are quite striking. Another very good old Invergordon.
SGP: 641 - 88 points.




More tasting notesCheck the index of all grain whiskies we've tasted so far







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