Bourbon Whiskey #1 24 Years (Boutique-y Whisky)

A 24 year-old bourbon whiskey no less! It comes from an undisclosed distillery and was bottled by That Boutique-y Whisky Co .

A huge bottling by the way, close to 9000 bottles. This kind of yield leaves you thinking where it came from and how they got hold of dozens of barrels of this age. Overstock, somehow?



imageBourbon whiskey #1 24 yo (48%, That Boutique-y Whisky Company 2018, 8376 btl.)

Nose: nice, lots of cinnamon syrup, leathery notes, pecan nuts and brown sugar. Vanilla filled croissants. Sweet, jammy dark fruits with plenty of rum soaked raisins. Latte. A...

Läs mer https://www.whiskynotes.be/2019/usa-bourbon/bourbon-whiskey-24-years-boutiquey-whisky/

New: TWB Originals // Glenmorangie Cadboll Estate // Big Peat 33 Years


The Whisky Barrel Originals

Specialist whisky shop The Whisky Barrel launched TWB Originals , a series of single casks from different regions and distilleries, three of which are matured in sherry casks from Jerez.

The inaugural batch contains four whiskies:



GlenDronach 1993 cask #6849 for Scotchwhisky.com

Sad story: the always reliable website Scotchwhisky.com closed down a while ago but they had an exclusive...

Läs mer https://www.whiskynotes.be/2019/whisky-news/whisky-barrel-originals-glenmorangie-cadboll-estate-big-peat-33-years/

Secret Highland 1983 (Liquid Art)

Belgian micro-bottler Liquid Art is celebrating its fifth anniversary with a 35 year-old Secret Highland 1983 . It’s a single malt bottled from a sherry butt and part of the yield is available in Holland with a WhiskyNerds label. At the same time the Nerds are bottling a 1987, also a secret.



imageSecret Highlands distillery 35 yo 1983 (48,2%, Liquid Art & WhiskyNerds 2019, sherry butt #82, 246 btl.)

Nose: old-style ‘fireplace’ whisky. A chalky note, waxed papers, rusty tools. Also worn leather, dried herbs and chamomile. Hay. There are vague fruity notes in the background, but that’s...

Läs mer https://www.whiskynotes.be/2019/undisclosed/secret-highland-1983-liquid-art-whiskynerds/

Dalwhinnie 30 Year Old (Special Release)

Dalwhinnie 30 Years is a mix of casks from 1987 and 1988 , making it one of the oldest expressions every released. It was matured in refill hogsheads and butts.

It’s one of the distilleries where the house style bottle format was sacrificed for the consistency of the Special Releases theme. Not sure why it happened for Dalwhinnie but not for Mortlach though.



imageDalwhinnie 30 yo (54,7%, OB ‘Special Releases’ 2019, refill hogsheads + butts, 7586 btl.)

Nose: meadow flowers, leathery notes and baking spices. Ginger cookies, some wet pebblestones. Hints of wax candles. Baked apple and white...

Läs mer https://www.whiskynotes.be/2019/dalwhinnie/dalwhinnie-30-year-old-special-release/

Christmas Malt 2019 (Whisky Exchange)


The Whisky Exchange has an ongoing tradition of selecting a special Christmas Malt for the festive season (see last year’s edition ), typically showing great value for money.

This year they selected a Linkwood 10 Year Old single malt matured in ex-bourbon and sherry casks.



imageLinkwood 10 yo ‘A Fine Christmas Malt’ (54,2%, The Whisky Exchange 2019, bourbon + sherry casks, 2696 btl.)

Nose: tarte au citron with meringue. Then green apples and lemon peels, with hints of vanilla yoghurt. Rhubarb. Fresh white bread. Light whiffs of jasmin and mint. Leathery notes. Slightly more waxy and buttery when...

Läs mer https://www.whiskynotes.be/2019/linkwood/christmas-malt-2019-whisky-exchange/

Old Pulteney 25 Year Old (2019)

Old Pulteney 25 Year Old , the premium addition to the core range which was introduced in 2017, had been retracted in 2018 as part of the redesign of the whole portfolio, and re-introduced this summer.

It is a combination of second-fill ex-bourbon casks and first-fill Spanish oak butts which previously held Oloroso wine according to the press release. They seem reluctant to use the term sherry on all of their new packaging, so they’re probably using similar (but much cheaper) wines from another denomination of origin, like Huelva or Montilla, and/or casks that have been seasoned in Scotland instead...

Läs mer https://www.whiskynotes.be/2019/old-pulteney/old-pulteney-25-year-old-2019/

Single Malts of Scotland – Reserve Casks



Elixir Distillers has recently unveiled a new series of small-batch single malts in the Single Malts of Scotland range, all marriages of four to six casks selected by whisky-maker Oliver Chilton and bottled at 48%.

This Reserve Casks series has a first batch ( Parcel No.1 ) with three bottlings. They are intended as introductions to the brand, leading up to the higher strength single cask releases. The labels even mention the amount of angel’s share over the years, a nice touch.



imageGlen Elgin 13 yo 2006 (48%, Single Malts of Scotland ‘Reserve Casks’ No. 1 2019,...

Läs mer https://www.whiskynotes.be/2019/caol-ila/single-malts-of-scotland-reserve-casks/

Pittyvaich 29 Years (Special Release)

For some reason the Pittyvaich Special Releases have always been 1989 casks. Past bottlings were quite interesting, from a peculiar distillery which only operated for 18 years before falling victim to industry consolidation in 1993 – casks are becoming rare.



imagePittyvaich 29 yo 1989 (51,4%, OB ‘Special Releases’ 2019, PX + Oloroso seasoned cask finish, 4976 btl.)

Nose: quite bright and vividly fruity, with sour plums, unripe pineapple and plenty of citrus. Green herbs, hay and gingery notes, floral honey as well. Some vanilla cake and a yeasty, bready touch. Mouth: creamy and spicy. Grapefruits and oranges, with...

Läs mer https://www.whiskynotes.be/2019/pittyvaich/pittyvaich-29-years-special-release/

New: Clynelish Distillery Exclusive // Christmas Malt from TWE and G M


Clynelish Distillery Exclusive

Clynelish announced a new limited edition only available at the distillery . It is a mixture of ex-bourbon and rejuvenated casks, without an age statement and bottled at 48% ABV. Just 6000 bottles are available for £ 90.




Christmas Malt 2019 (The Whisky Exchange)

As part of an ongoing tradition, The Whisky Exchange selected a special whisky for Christmas. For 2019 it is a refined 10-year-old single malt from Linkwood distillery, matured in a combination of ex-bourbon and ex-sherry casks. It is bottled at cask strength 54,2% 2696 bottles.

I will review it next week....

Läs mer https://www.whiskynotes.be/2019/whisky-news/new-clynelish-distillery-exclusive-christmas-malt-from-twe-and-gm/

Spirits in the Sky 2019

I attended Spirits in the Sky last weeke-end and while I don’t go to whisky festvals as much as I once did, it’s safe to say this is still the best place to experience the Belgian whisky scene and stay up-to-date about the new releases.



I’ll start with very quick impressions of a few new and upcoming releases – this is probably what people are mostly looking for. Mind that these are just casual tasting impressions…


  • Undisclosed Speyside 27 yo 1992 (46.2%, Infrequent Flyers, barrel #4406044) A great new release in the second batch from Alistair Walker. A...

Läs mer https://www.whiskynotes.be/2019/whisky-news/spirits-in-the-sky-2019/

Springbank 18 Years (Artful Dodger)

There’s a new batch of Artful Dodger bottlings but they seem to arrive in a random order. TWE offered this sherry matured Springbank 18 Years (no vintage) a few weeks ago, but not the other releases. And no sign in other stores, better keep your eyes peeled…



imageSpringbank 18 yo (45,9%, Artful Dodger 2019, first-fill sherry hogshead #646, 392 btl.)

Nose: old leather, some car workshop aromas and even light farmy touches (sheep stable). Slightly Brora-like, nice. Then some roast meat and tobacco, some nutty touches and flints. Spanish fig bread and dates in the background. Orange (peel),...

Läs mer https://www.whiskynotes.be/2019/springbank/springbank-18-years-artful-dodger/

Starward 2012 (TWE 20th Anniversary)


Starward is Australian Maltwhisky produced in Melbourne since 2007. Like their own Starward Solera expression, this single cask release for the 20th Anniversary of The Whisky Exchange was bottled from an Apera cask .

In 2010 the Australian fortified wine which had historically been called sherry underwent a name change to apera . After all Sherry (or the Spanish version Jerez) is a protected designation of origin, which after decades Australia decided to respect in an agreement with the EU. It comes in similar styles, from dry to very sweet, but contrary to sherry it is often seen as...

Läs mer https://www.whiskynotes.be/2019/world/starward-2012-twe-20th-anniversary/

Arran 2013 // Port Charlotte 2008 (Fisherman’s Retreat)

The Fisherman’s Retreat is a restaurant and wedding venue near Manchester, but they also have a valued whisky bar and store .

We’ll be trying two of their shop bottlings: an Arran 2013 (Yalumba Octavius Shiraz wine cask) and a Port Charlotte 2008 (Haut Brion cask). They seem to have a preference for red wine casks (specifically from the Southern hemisphere), also for their previous releases.




imageArran 5 yo 2013 (54%, Fisherman’s Retreat 2018, Yalumba Octavius cask, 191 btl.)

Salmon colour. Nose: slightly gimmicky red wine maturation, like in the early days. Cooked strawberries, pomegranate and a...

Läs mer https://www.whiskynotes.be/2019/bruichladdich/arran-2013-port-charlotte-2008-fishermans-retreat/

Talisker 15 Year Old (Special Release)

One of the Special Releases 2019 that got me excited was this Talisker 15 Year Old , the first time this is seen as an official release of this age. It’s a 2002 vintage matured in freshly charred American oak hogsheads, bottled at natural strength.



imageTalisker 15 yo 2002 (57,3%, OB ‘Special Releases’ 2019, freshly charred American oak hogsheads)

Nose: rather bright and mellow at first, with some banana cake and stewed apples, smoked peach and iodine. A little wax and vanilla. Rather summery and blossomy, but not too soft. Light chilli and cinnamon. Mouth: quite powerful, more...

Läs mer https://www.whiskynotes.be/2019/talisker/talisker-15-years-special-releases/

New: Ardbeg Blaaack // Redbreast 27 Years Ruby Port // Mortlach 15 ‘Six Kingdoms’


Ardbeg Blaaack

Pinot Noir casks from New Zealand: the key element for the upcoming Ardbeg Blaaack . A black sheep on the label expresses the fact that this is truly a whisky apart . The Committee 20th Anniversary edition is bottled at 50.7%, traditionally there’s a common version at 46% for Ardbeg Day.




Mortlach 15 Years ‘Six Kingdoms’ (Game of Thrones)

The ninth and final bottling in Diageo’s Game of Thrones series is a Mortlach 15 Year Old ‘Six Kingdoms’ .

It has been matured in first-fill sherry seasoned casks and finished in American oak ex-bourbon casks. Pretty...

Läs mer https://www.whiskynotes.be/2019/whisky-news/ardbeg-blaaack-redbreast-27-ruby-port-mortlach-15-six-kingdoms/

Glen Garioch 21 Years 1965

imageCheaper by the Dram is a new whisky sample service specialized in rare and unique drams. They are sourcing collectable whiskies from auctions and collections and make them available as 3 cl samples.

It’s a shame that they can’t mention the distillery on the sample bottle, nor publish a picture of the actual bottle that is being shared. It has to do with SWA labeling requirements and copyrights, they claim most other sample services are walking on a thin line. However they can link to Whiskybase profiles.




Anyway they offered me to test-drive the service and sent me...

Läs mer https://www.whiskynotes.be/2019/glen-garioch/glen-garioch-21-years-1965/

Mortlach 26 Year Old


We’re proceeding with the 2019 Special Releases and I’m sure this Mortlach 26 Year Old is on many whisky lovers’ wishlist.

Mortlach is a bit of a difficult brand in my opinion: drastically premiumized in 2015 but without success, then given a makeover with more reasonable prices last year. I think they are now offering much better value for money (but also significant batch variation ). Interesting to see where this is going.

Mortlach 26 Years is a 1992 vintage, matured in first-fill PX and Oloroso seasoned casks .



imageMortlach 26 yo 1992 (53,3%, OB ‘Special Releases’ 2019,...

Läs mer https://www.whiskynotes.be/2019/mortlach/mortlach-26-year-old/

Kilchoman 2012 STR Cask

Another STR cask whisky. These are red wine casks treated with Dr Jim Swan’s proprietary shaving / toasting / re-charring process. The wine adds depth but the shaving and re-charring takes away the excessive winey edge, while also eliminating the rough new oak elements. A mix of seasoned and virgin oak if you like, mostly used by young distilleries (like Gouden Carolus and Cotswolds ) to beef up young whisky.

Kilchoman STR Cask is a combination of 43 hogsheads, filled with 50 ppm new make and aged for around 6-7 years of age.



imageKilchoman 2012 STR Cask (50%,...

Läs mer https://www.whiskynotes.be/2019/kilchoman/kilchoman-str-cask-2012/

Clynelish 2005 (G M for TWE)

This is another one of the three new 20th Anniversary bottlings just released by The Whisky Exchange for their 20th Anniversary.

A Clynelish 2005 matured for over 14 years in a refill sherry cask and bottled by Gordon & MacPhail in the Connoisseurs Choice range.



imageClynelish 14 yo 2005 (51,8%, Gordon & MacPhail ‘Connoisseurs Choice’ for TWE 20th Anniversary 2019, refill sherry hogshead, 224 btl.)

Nose: dried bananas and pears at first, moving to nutty notes, hints of sour orange oil and mirabelles. Old resinous oak, camphor and wet tobacco leaves. Cinnamon and nutmeg. Pollen and herbal honey....

Läs mer https://www.whiskynotes.be/2019/clynelish/clynelish-2005-gordon-macphail-whisky-exchange/

Islay No.2 25 Years (Boutiquey Whisky)

This is an single malt Islay whisky matured for over 25 years at an undisclosed distillery and bottled by That Boutique-y Whisky Company . The question that everyone asks is always ‘what distillery could it be’, but does that really matter?



imageIslay No. 2 (48,6%, That Boutique-y Whisky Co 2019, Batch #3, 1522 btl.)

Nose: a nicely refined Islay profile, with apple compote, melons and traces of charred pineapple. Menthol and eucalyptus, carbon papers and toffee. Sea spray and burnt pine needles. Rather complex and layered. Mouth: punchier and smokier. Starts on earthy smoke and salty seaweed, before...

Läs mer https://www.whiskynotes.be/2019/undisclosed/islay-no2-25-years-boutiquey-whisky/


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