Auchentoshan Valinch 2011 – Single Malt Cask Strength Review.

Auchentoshan Valinch 2011. 57.5%

Valinchnoun

A tube for drawing liquors from a cask by the bunghole.

The Auchentoshan Valinch was introduced into the stable of Auchentoshan’s catalogue in 2011, this review is sampled from that first release. It’s basically a cask strength version of the Auchentoshan Classic which you would find in several high street shops. It’s interesting to note despite its CS nature the colour is much lighter than the Classic suggesting little or no colour stabilisation is in this release. An excellent sign!

Nose

An exceptionally lively but crisp aroma. Strong citrus notes hold, with lemon sherbets, icing sugar and sweet shops abound. The nose holds all my childhood joys of the corner shop!

Palate

Surprisingly i find this not as nippy as some cask strengths. Don’t get me wrong it is warm, just complimentary to the other flavours. Lots of citrus. Lemon/lime peel, sweet and sour, hot pepper, very pleasant indeed at full strength.

Finish

Medium with plenty of citrus, peels and pepper heat.

With a small drop of water.

The nose develops more sweet shop depth, with some intense lemon and pear drops added to the increasing powdered sugars. Time in the glass releases some of the more familiar vanilla and bourbon influenced notes.
The palate is pretty similar to full strength but with the heat dumbed down.

A little more water

Getting parma violets now! This dram can take a fair drop of water, but i find it weakens the palate and finish more than the nose, and so the enjoyment for me withers with too much water.

Would I water?

Would stay with 1 good dollop in a 3-4cl measure. (Dollop – that’s scientific for you!)

Conclusion

It’s a fantastic dram. Excellent starter for a mini tasting session and something to challenge those who think they can guess their whiskies. It’s one of those that’s a never ending surprise when it comes to savouring, as you can find something a little new every time you go back to the glass.

Also as far as value for money goes, at around £35-£40 a bottle it goes a very long way and provides a lot of enjoyment. Thumbs up to Auchentoshan for producing a Whisky which will be the talk and highlight for many for a long time.

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