Distilled 15 November 1989, bottled at the distillery by Leif Olav 23 May 2015, cask number 4148.
Nose: Fruity. Candied oranges, passionfruit, dried apricot, vanilla and oaky perfumes. With water it gets a faintly perfumed smokiness, incense, perhaps?
Palate: Chocolate confectionery. Dark chocolate with a pssion fruit filling, brittle and i touch of salt. Engine oil shows up when water is added, as does old, dry oak. The finish is long and consists of oak, dark chocolate and dark cherries.
Comments: Very nice indeed. Classic Old Pulteney in many respects, and age has weathered it nicely without letting the oak take over. I’ve only got a sample, unfortunately, I’d really like a bottle – or five – of this one.
Supposedly based on a “recipe” from 1903, the Finealta is “lightly peated” and matured in American and oloroso sherry oak. I purchased it at a reasonable price on the ferry between Larvik and Hirtshals as a travel dram on my way to Billund last November.
Nose: Dry wood, some ashes, fruit; apples and apricots, and fruit trees. The fruit is emphasised with water, approaching dried fruits rather than fresh, and some vanilla makes its appearance.
Palate: Vanilla and heat, dried fruits, black pepper or some other spice. Water brings out oven roasted or grilled fruits, definitely a little scorched. Otherwise much of the same.
Comments: I quite like this. Not a world of complexity and oomph, but a rather nice sipping whisky. It worked well as a travel dram, which needs to be easy drinking and a nice thing to share with others (people who may be newbies in the whisky world), it fullfills those criteria perfectly. I’d happily purchase it again if the price is right.
Bottled June 2012.
Nose: Marsipan covered in a thin layer of dark chocolate. Fruit tree. More fruity with water, tinned fruit coctail with mint and chocolate chips.
Palate: Plum in Madeira, dark chocolate, a little After Eight. Maltiness shows up with water, also oak and a hint of pepper.
Kommentar: Quite simply really, really good.
Bottled January 2003, cask number 6182.
Nose: Barbequed marshmallows, oak, vanilla, plum jam. With water it develops malty notes, both shortbread and digestives, “Kornmo” with real butter and brown cheese. There are also red apples and a hint of honey.
Palate: Sweet pears, light oaky bitterness. With water it develops a cloying sweetness, possibly marshmallows again, but over the top. Not unpleasant in itself, but a feeling that it might become too much very quickly. There is also some juniper wood and sweet apples.
Comments: Obviously needs water to tame the strength. More interesting nose than palate, but despite the lack of hyperbole I am actually pretty sold on this. I’m a little sad that I only have a sample, and since I can’t remember who I got it from I don’t know whose cupboard to raid, it might have been Morten..
This is the old standard bottling of Glenmorangie, pre-LVMH.
Nose: Red currants and orange, vanilla and a light oaky perfume. No noticable evolution with water.
Palate: Sauna and fruit. A bit more spicy with water.
Comments: A perfectly decent entry level bottling. Easy to like and drink, and uncomplicated.
Hand filled from a cask at the distillery by Snorre (by order of me). Distilled 21.11.1995, bottled 08.07.2010, matured in an ex bourbon cask, numbered 2851.
Nose: The ABV is noticable, otherwise it smells of vanilla, wood and dried cranberries. Water opens it a bit and adds dark chocolate, toasted almonds and barley.
Palate: good quality vanilla ice cream with brittle. Water brings out a woody note, but the vanilla and brittle stay. The finish is very long and tastes mostly of sweet but pure liquorice.
Comments: Definitely needs water. I seem to like it better now than when I first tasted it, so it is possible that a little air has helped it along. Not the best Pulteney I’ve had, but it would not deter me from filling a bottle myself if I ever get to visit the distillery.
This bottle has been languishing at the back of our cupboard for a while. Purchased at Kastrup for a ridiculously low sum some years back.
Nose: Apple and pear compote, but not an overly sweet one. Light oak and vanilla. A hint of menthol. The menthol is emphasised with water and other herbs and juniper wood also appear.
Palate: Vanilla and dried apricots. Dry wood on the finish. With water menthol appears on the palate as well, green wood and conifer needles, possibly from juniper.
Comments: An attractive 21 year old. It’s rather surprising that the bottle has been left untouched this long, I think we may have to do something about it.
Nose: Citrus, bonfire, a lot of alchohol. With quite a bit of water I get more fruits; melon and sweet pears.
Palate: Cold smoke, lemon drops wrapped in waxed paper, oak. With water a warm spicyness develops, rather a lot of oaky bitterness and yeasty dough.
Comments: This has been left as a dreg for too long, unless my memory of what it used to be like betrays me. It needs quite a lot of water before it’s drinkable, and I guess it’s been matured in fairly inactive casks since the alchohol is still so obvious after 20 years. It has a lot going for it, but the bitterness on the palate is too overwhelming. I can’t remmeber it from before, so I suspect we must take this bottle as a sign that we really should have a spring clean (ok, a summer clean) in our whisky cabinet to make sure any dregs we want to keep are rebottled into sample bottles to minimise oxidation.
Nectar d’Or has been finished in Sauterne casks. Blind tasting.
Nose: Acetone and oak, lightly perfumed and quite bourbon-y. But then, after some time in the glass: Raspberry jam and pancakes. With water it developes a trace of wax or Play-Doh and burnt matches.
Palate: Oaky perfume, faint bitterness, burnt sugar. Malt and orange marmelade. The marmelade turns to berry jam once water is added.
Comments: On first sip I was hesitant, but after some time in the glass it’s quite nice, really. Not something I’d buy a whole bottle of, perhaps, but I’d not say no to another dram.
From Old Pulteney’s Lighthouse series, which is only available at Travel Retail. Noss Head is from ex-bourbon casks. Blind tasting.
Nose: Curry, coriander and garam masala. With water I also get green apples, malt and rock dust.
Palate: There is something curryish on the palate as well, but also malt and vanilla.
Comment: An unexpected nose and taste combination, I must say, but I rather like it. I need to try to get hold of another sample and try it again to see if it’s just my nose that’s out of whack today. And if this is how it appears to me consistently, I will probably try to get hold of a bottle, because this is unusual – but good – stuff.