Another installment of my digital escapades in the world of whisky. This time with my friends at Southport Whisky Club; hosted by Graeme Mackay from Morrison and Mackay. We had a substantial line up Càrn Mòr Whiskies on the 23rd April 2020.
So 6 drams we’re to be had; one of which I have already reviewed and evangelised greatly; the Ben Nevis 4 year old, but what about the other 5?
Glen Ord 7 year old 47.5% abv
I’ve not had many Glen Ord drams in my time; in fact my first experience with one was a 10 year old Glen Ord from Cadenhead’s in Edinburgh. On the nose it was freshly picked strawberries; and on the palate it was a really nice malty cereal affair; and at 58.3% I felt it didn’t need water to enhance the experience.
Anyway I digress, as I too often do, as for this bourbon barrel matured 7 year old. . .
Nose: Light, slight lemon; Special K breakfast cereal
Palate: More maltyness, and fruit juice; pineapple
Finish: Drying and quite a spirit driven burn going down
A good starter dram, not enough going on for me though
Glenburgie 8 year old 47.5% abv
Matured in a pair of bourbon barrels let’s see what occurs. . .
Nose: Cinnamon spice, fence paint; and my notes clarify (that doesn’t mean creosote)
Palate: Heavy woodspice, some green apple
Finish: More woodspice and black pepper too, didn’t out stay its welcome
The cask has had alot to say with this one; I’d say the spirit character won out over the Glen Ord; this one was definitely led by the cask influence
Croftengea 9yo 47.5% abv
Peated spirit from Loch Lomond
Nose: Peat (sorry). It’s a light and sweet peat smell though; nothing too acrid and smoky
Palate: Slight pepperiness and some over-brewed black tea working with the peat
Finish: Fairly swift. Sweet smoke lingering but its not staying there forever; it’s an easy drinking peated dram.
I usually leave peat until the end of the night; but this one I could happily sip for most of an evening
Cambus 1991 27 year old Single Grain 60.6%
Grain whisky from the lost Cambus distillery, matured in a sherry butt
Nose: Wood varnish/heavy lacquer; fresh polish
Palate: Chocolate and sherry; intense fruit syrup (plum or fig, who knows?)
Finish: More fruitiness but also a slight nutty taste, almond paste maybe? coming through right at the end
What can I say? This suited me down to the ground flavour profile wise!
Glen Spey 1994 24 year old 59.7%
Matured in a sherry hogshead
Nose: I’m getting strawberry? some dusty oak shelves too and fruit cake
Palate: It’s understandably got the traditional stewed fruits and raisins, buts it’s not a sherry monster by any stretch. Lighter on the mouthfeel and maybe some ginger spice there too
Finish: Gingerbread and sherry (again) a nice surprise that it wasn’t a total overpowering of heavy fruit, nice balance with the spirit.
Give. Me. More. Old. Grains.
This was a great night; Graeme was a brilliant host and answered all our questions; sharing some great stories in between. As for the whiskies; the Càrn Mòr range is vast; and in my opinion gives you the best value for money in the independent bottling ‘market’. There is bound to be something out there to suit your palate; there was couple in this line up that didn’t really light a fire under me but then you can’t expect that with every whisky you try. The quality is definitely there; and this session certainly put my faith in the brand. I’ve purchased a few more Càrn Mòr bottlings since then; and I’ll continue to do so.