Arran 1996 18 year old cask #896928 Single Malts of Scotland
Non chill filtered
No added colouring
£79.95 from The Whisky Exchange
On first pour and sniff there is quite the fresh gingerbread aroma in the front with a backing of brown sugar crusted Creme brûlée. With a little time in the glass the Sherry influence comes forward, in the form of spice and some sherried raisin. It’s never too abrasive or enforcing, only enhancing the gingerbread sweet malt. Sweet cinnamon buns, toffee, fresh caramel, oranges and apples are all in the beautifully complex mix. It’s one of those combined aromas, which for me would be an ideal perfume for valentines! A little more time and more citrus an shortcake come though.
Gentle sweet citrus turning to pleasantly sugared sour lemon juice. A touch of alcohol spicy twang quickly subsides, for more layers of lemon, lime and orange juices, interchanging with creamy vanilla and malty biscuits. Some light bites of fresh ginger interspersed throughout the experience. Some clove spice comes in late in the development and a few dark fruits wave to you right at the end of the development, but it’s all about the citrus and biscuit creams, and it’s very pleasant for it.
Medium to long in length. The finish is spicy, again retaining clove, cinnamon and a touch of pepper. Fruit juices turn to pith and peel, for a lip smacking finish. The slightest hint of menthol at the very end.
Really enjoying this neat, so only the slightest drop added. More sherry spices and some dry nuttiness is coming through now, with some of the citrus fruits taking a step back. Still very creamy and sniffable. The palate, now softer, more integrated, more orangey, less citric and sweeter. Ooooo, that’s delicious, big, complex, epic! Touches of coffee in and around the sugar and toffee. The finish is slightly shortened, less spicy. Sweet and sumptuous. Really beautiful stuff. Very very sippable.
A whisky to share with mates, converse over, contemplate and enjoy. This is really nice stuff. It’s not big on the sherry. But compliments a solid quality malt and some great gentle maturation. It’s a citrus sipper, and dangerously moreish.
Many thanks to The Whisky Exchange for the review sample