Whisky Musings #5 – Blair Athol 19 (Cadenhead Small Batch)

Milestone episode #5!  Hurray!

For this one I wanted to do something a little more unusual and obscure, and to that end let’s look a bottle from Cadenhead’s independent bottlers in Edinburgh, Scotland:

 

Blair Athol 19 Year (Cadenhead’s Small Batch)(Highlands) – 54.5% ABV

Colour: Pinot Grigio

Nose: Dry, grassy, hay.  Subdued fruit notes follow: Pear, sour green apple, and peach.  

Palate: Very light, but pleasant, mouth feel.  The approach is dominated by earth, grassy notes.  With a little time on the tongue the fruit really develops… Pineapple, peach, plum and green wine grapes.  The fruit notes really ride the line between dry and sour.

Finish:  Long, lingering and dry. The earthiness just sticks with you, though a creamy vanilla note comes through on the finish, along with some light fig and plum.

Score: 90/100

There’s so much to this bottling, that every time I come back to it I seem to discover something new.  There is so little sweetness to that I would have expected the fruit notes to become sour, but they don’t.  Maybe it’s the lack of citrus, of lemon or lime, that saves the day, or maybe it’s the lingering, creamy finish that just balances out the incredibly dry palate.  I wish I could say I knew what the magic formula was that really tickles my fancy with this bottle, but it’s a bit of a mystery.

Or maybe that’s just it… The mystery of the strange flavour combinations in this dram, and how they work so well together.  They say it’s all about the journey, right?  Not the destination?

Well the journey to puzzle out this dram may be one I never complete, but I will certainly enjoy the attempt!

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