This week for Phil Your Glass, Phil is reviewing a 1997 Brora bottled by Gordon & Macphail. His full thoughts and tasting notes are below.
The beauty of smelling and tasting Brora is that it confirms that some whiskies are worth the hype. I’m yet to try a Brora that isn’t exceptional, they probably exist, but they haven’t passed by me yet. Even at 40% ABV, this thing is the definition of divine.
Nose: A little funky – Fresh cut grass, decaying smoke, hay, farmyards, chalk, wet stones on the beach, pineapple juice, glacier mints and candy floss. Sweet treats by a coastal bonfire. The longer this thing stays in the glass, the sweeter it becomes. To go from decaying smoke into candy floss and pineapple juice is something that I’ve never experienced before.
Palate: Sweet! More pineapple, green apple, fresh pear…here comes the funk. Dirty, farmyard, subtle smoke, and huge texture – tasting this blind, I would have no idea that this is 40%. Creamed barley, white pepper, soft oak. Much more of the coastal Brora feel here. The sweet arrival quickly dissipates to become this rough around the edges yet charming whisky.
Finish: Green, grassy, smoky spice! This thing is full of so much fun and contrast. It’s the youngest Brora that I’ve been able to try (if my vintages are correct), and it just has so much charm and playfulness to it.
Assessment: Wonderful. Truly wonderful. Lives up to the hype. Brora is incredible and still relatively affordable. Especially if you want to really, really treat yourself.