Whiskyfun
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October 24, 2014


Whiskyfun

More Clynelish

Because we forgot quite a few of them yesterday – and we needed a break anyway. We’ll also try to find one or two older ones.

Clynelish 15 yo 1980/1995 (43%, Van Wees, The Ultimate, cask #1270)

Clynelish 15 yo 1980/1995 (43%, Van Wees, The Ultimate, cask #1270) Three stars Picture of a similar bottle. Clynelish 1980 is very uncommon, I think only Signatory – who did this bottling – had at least one sister cask around the same time. Colour: straw. Nose: it’s both fruity and chalky, but not exactly waxy. I rather get ink, minerals, graphite oil, some grass, leaf smoke (garden bonfire) and a touch of mustard that do remind me a bit of early 1980s Brora. A rather complex and pretty austere nose, I’m curious about the palate. Mouth: maybe that’s the low strength, but it may lack a little more depth and oiliness for this make, while there’s a little cardboard and ink. A touch of iron too, then more smoke again. It’s rather smokier than most other Clynelishes. Intriguing. Finish: not really short, but it’s a little ‘hollow’. Must be the strength indeed. Comments: it’s a great peaty and dry make with a weakish body, which is very frustrating. Still worth a good score in my book. SGP:353 - 81 points.

Clynelish 17 yo 1997/2014 (50.3%, Limburg Dram Club, bourbon hogshead)

Clynelish 17 yo 1997/2014 (50.3%, Limburg Dram Club, bourbon hogshead) Four stars and a half Yes, another 1997. Colour: straw. Nose: as fruity and waxy as expected. Quince pie, lemon curd, beeswax, a touch of clay, a little earth, a little candle wax, a drop of sunflower oil. What’s not to love? With water: the wax gets more paraffiny. Lemon-scented plasticine? Mouth (neat): full and creamy mouth feel. Lemons and grapefruits, more beeswax, a little citron liqueur, a little salt. It’s pristine, Christine. With water: perfect. More of all that, with a wee limoncello side. Finish: good length, ultra-clean, zesty, perfect. Comments: Limburg is the continent’s capital of malt whisky. Why am I writing this here? SGP:552 – 89 points.

Clynelish 16 yo 1997/2014 (50.2%, Eiling Lim, 3rd release, 70 bottles)

Clynelish 16 yo 1997/2014 (50.2%, Eiling Lim, 3rd release, 70 bottles) Four stars and a half Most probably approximately the same whisky, but why would we complain? Colour: straw. Nose: a wee tad more mineral, a notch chalkier – in a good way – and globally a little more on dry white wine. Say a blend of sauvignon blanc with bone dry riesling. Less lemons and quinces. With water: becomes grassier and earthier. Damp earth. Mouth (neat): again, it’s a little more mineral, more herbal, even a little mentholy. With water: the lemons are back, together with a wee medicinal side. Chlorophyll and menthol. Finish: long, with a little aniseed this time. A little vanilla in the aftertaste. Comments: and yet another superb Clynelish! Loved the earthiness. SGP:462 - 89 points.

No we won’t go on with other 1997s, let’s rather have a no-vintage version, for once!

Clynelish 18 yo (50.6%, The Whisky Exchange for The Whisky Show London, 2014)

Clynelish 18 yo (50.6%, The Whisky Exchange for The Whisky Show London, 2014) Five starsCould be a 1996 or could be a 1995, or a vatting. Love the retro label, as well as the rather provocative ‘Pure Malt’ appellation. The darker colour suggests sherry’s been in use. Colour: dark amber. Nose: well this is different. Adios purity and cleanliness, but not freshness! We’re having cigars and chocolate, a little stout, notes of roasted chestnuts, whiffs of amontillado, and then rather Banyuls or Rivesaltes. Rancio! With water: more of all that. Don’t I detect white truffles as well? (Alba!) Mouth (neat): rum from Sutherland! Seriously, wasn’t that rather a rum cask? Demerara sugar, marmalade, then citrons, bananas flambéed, toasted pastries… The spirit’s zesty side manages to shine through after a few seconds, like Moses splitting the Red Sea, and the whole becomes zestier and more ‘Clynelish’. Fun. With water: becomes more herbal, and a little leafy/leathery. Black bread. Finish: long, with notes of rosehip tea, perhaps. Comments: the fact that it’s a very different mid-to-late 1990s Clynelish isn’t the least of its advantages. Brilliant and rare. SGP:562 - 91 points.

Good, eleven Clynelishes within two days, that’s enough – not that we can ever get enough Clynelish!

More tasting notes Check the index of all Clynelish I've tasted so far

 

 

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