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

March 25, 2021



Wee battles,
today Allt-A-Bhainne


I'll have to say it again, this ought to be pronounced 'Alt-ah-vanya' but if you're not 100% sure you'll nail it, you'd rather use 'Alta-bain' instead of making a fool of yourself (as I do myself all the time when in Scotland, they keep directing me to the Tourist Office!)

Allt-a-Bhainne 23 yo 1997/2020 (51.3%, Watt Whisky, bourbon hogshead, 241 bottles)

Allt-a-Bhainne 23 yo 1997/2020 (51.3%, Watt Whisky, bourbon hogshead, 241 bottles) Four stars and a half
Colour: light gold. Nose: ooh, this is right up my alley. Allt-A-Bhainne, are we sure? Limoncello, croissants, kiwis, rhubarb, a few cream eggs, touch of aloe vera, touch of custard… I find this splendidly modest, all natural, un-made-up, and so pretty perfect this far. Unless water kills it: of course it doesn't. More grass and green tea, all subtle and fresh. Touches of hops too, I believe. Mouth (neat): sweets and liqueurs, citrus first, then green fruits indeed, kiwis, rhubarb, candied angelica. Tangerine drops with a touch of coriander. Or there, mezcal lollypops, the ones where they add gusanos a.k.a. maguey worms inside. They're scary, not all kids love them. With water: pink pepper! Timut or Szechuan-style, this is brilliant, they're pretty citrusy and I know foodistas who find them too easy. I don't, I love them. Finish: medium, on just a little more of all that. Leaves you palate as fresh as Himalayan spring water. Comments: are we totally sure this is Allt-A-Bhainne?
SGP:651 - 88 points.

Allt-Â-Bhainne 24 yo 1995/2020 (57.9%, Golden Cask, cask # CM264, 202 bottles)

Allt-Â-Bhainne 24 yo 1995/2020 (57.9%, Golden Cask, cask # CM264, 202 bottles) Four stars
The excellent folks at Whisky-Online tell us that a large part of A-A-B's output goes into 100 Pipers. Ha. By the way, we have to applaud the fact that House of Macduff have written the name correctly, so with the accent on the A in the middle. Allt-Â-Bhainne. Colour: pale gold. Nose: probably more cask influence here, as there's more obvious coconut water and lanolin, putty, even a wee feeling of nosing a glass of Malibu. Which, naturally, not many people do but there, nice nose. Some Cointreau or Grand-Marnier as well. With water: rather bread and vanilla, maize bread, warm polenta, leaven... We always like that. Mouth (neat): very punchy! This is almost raw tequila indeed, although not one of the grassiest ones. Grapefruit liqueur, starfruit, grass, a feeling of cactus (but agave's no cactus)… With water: the palate's really not similar to the nose, it's much tenser, grassier, lemony…. Some sourness too, something that I enjoy as well. Finish: long, on lemon and grapefruit juices. Some pepper in the aftertaste. Comments: another lovely drop and a good fighter. The palate might not be for everyone.
SGP:471 - 85 points.

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