Monthly Archives: September 2017

#88 – Springbank 10 Year Old (Caged Bottle)

Distillery: Springbank
Name: Caged Bottle
Age: 10
Chill-filtered: No
Strength: 58.4%
Bottle Size: 70cl
Price: £45
Distilled: 2005-08-19
Bottled: 2016
Bottles: 1
Notes: Bottle number 1495, Warehouse 15, Rotation No. 598, Refill Bourbon Hogshead
Nose: Creme brulee, marzipan, oily, hay, musty, minerals
Taste: Oily, creme brulee, dark chocolate, treacle
Finish: Long, dry, spicy
Rating: 9/10

So I have a very special treat for you today, I will be sampling my Springbank 10 year old Caged Bottle. What is the Caged Bottle? I hear you ask, well let me explain. When you visit the distillery shop you have the opportunity to view their Caged whiskies, which are literally caged off. I there are an assortment of one off bottlings, yes that’s right, bottle number 1 of 1. To help make the experience a little more special you also get to sign the bottle out of the cage, so your name will forever be in the caged bottlings log.

The nose is just out of this world for a 10 year old, seriously amazing. I am hit with creme brulee initially with some marzipan coming through just afterwards. It also has an oily nose to, I think linseed oil. At the tail of the nose there is a slight floral note with hay coming through. After a while it begins to take on a musty quality with a slight mineral edge.

The palate has a lovely thick oily texture to it with some real spice there too. I’m happy to say that the creme brulee makes an appearance again along with some dark chocolate and some treacle. It also has a good woody quality which is bought out with a touch of water.

In conclusion then, Amazing! It just has so much going on from the nose to the palate and onto the finish. I love how it has the signature Springbank flavour but you have to work your way through so many layers of awesomeness before you get there. Unfortunately because it is so damn nice I don’t foresee it lasting long so I suspect I will have to make another trip to the distillery sometime soon.

#87 – Glen Elgin-Glenlivet 23 Year Old (WM Cadenhead)

Distillery: Glen Elgin-Glenlivet
Name: WM Cadenhead bottling
Age: 23
Chill-filtered: No
Strength: 46%
Bottle Size: 70cl
Price: About £75 I think
Distilled: 1991
Bottled: 2015
Bottles: 630
Nose: Sherry, dark chocolate, ripe fleshy fruits
Taste: Pear, spicy, subtle summer fruits
Finish: Short, oaky,
Rating: 6/10

I spotted this bottle in a shop during my 2016 Scotland visit. It’s a distillery that I was not familiar with which always catches my attention and I had never tried a WM Cadenhead bottling so was interested in trying one.

So the bottle usefully comes with it’s own tasting notes, for the nose it states “Dark chocolate; some meatiness along with a good glug of sherry. Bruised bananas; distant smokiness and some maple syrup”. For me I can identify the sherry, dark chocolate and can see where they are coming from with the bananas, I do not get that specifically but do get ripe fleshy fruits. I can also see what they mean with the meatiness too, I would not have initially used that word, but I like it, I’ll stick with it.

Onto the palate and the official notes state “More chocolate, although softer than on the nose. Cinnamon buns; strawberry yoghurt and poached pears.”. Personally I can get pears (never had poached so can’t confirm that) and I get a general summer fruits quality coming through, although this is subtle. There is also a nice spice to it, nothing overpowering but adds nicely to the palate.

The finish is noted as having “Some soft oaky notes along with red fruits. Faint dunnage warehouses with raspberries and lychees”. I get the oaky notes and a bit of spice to go with it but also the summer fruits notes from the palate does continue onto the finish.

It is rare that I read official tasting notes and can honestly say that I agree with them, that one of the great things about whisky, each tastes different to everyone. These tasting notes however were clearly written by someone with a similar palate to myself  (albeit someone with a more sophisticated palate) as I can agree with many of the flavours identified.

Overall it has been a pleasant dram, it has a good body to it, a little heavier than most, with enough complexity there to entertain the palate. It has not blow me away however but I would say that it’s quality does match the price I paid.