Clynelish 18 years Old Particular 48.4%

Old Particular is a series of bottlings from the independent bottler Douglas Laing. The spirit in this Clynelish cask, a refill hogshead, was distilled in April 1997 and bottled in May 2015. The cask provided 216 bottles, and at least some are available at Vinmonopolet. It has the reference DL10770.

Clynelish 18 years Old Particular

Nose: Fruits and berries, gooseberry bush, green apples. With water the fruit intensifies.

Palate: Black pepper, a lot of sweetness, cask as well, somewhat musty oak, cinnamon.

Comments: Not a text-book Clynelish, but it’s complex and certainly very nice.

Tasted at Trondheim Whiskyfestival 2016.

Highland Park 18 years Duthies Cadenhead 46%

Nose: Butterscotch and rubber. With water I get rather rubbery “Hubba Bubba” (chewing gum brand) with liquorice flavour.

Palate: Rubber. You know those balloons you can hardly bear to inflate because they taste harshly of rubber. Water does very little to help.

Comments: Undrinkable. With enough water the rubber is sufficiently diluted both on the nose and the tast that I could finish it, but since nothing else shows up to take its place I’m left with water with a vaguely rubbery taste and a hint of alchocol and it’s not worth it.

Thanks (I think) to Daniel for the sample.

Highland Park 18 years 43% (old edition)

This is the 18 year old in the old version, from before Highland Park refurbished their standard range. I belive the bottle was purchased around 10 years ago. If I get hold of a sample of the new (or indeed even older) 18 year old, I will do a similar comparison as for the two twelves.

hp_18Nose: Surprisingly spirity. Oak and heather. After a while dried fruits. With water the smoke appears, but also dark chocolate and a little forest.

Palate: Oak, dry wood, dried cranberries. With water I get smoke on the palate as well, and some sort of vegetation – dark chocolate on the finish.

Comments: A classic. It was once a good buy, the price was very reasonable for an 18 year old and you got a really good dram in return for your money. Those that remember the even older Highland Park expressions claim that it was even better twenty or even thirty years ago. That may be so, but I will confine my nostalgia to this one.