The Connoisseur’s Choice series is one of the most iconic series from Gordon & Macphail. This week for Phil Your Glass, Phil is reviewing the Kinclaith expression from the series, distilled in 1967 and bottled at 26 years old
Not many malt distilleries still reside within grain distilleries, the only notable current one would be Ailsa Bay inside The Girvan grain distillery. The last malt whisky stills to be built in Glasgow that sadly closed its doors in 1975, before the exodus of the eighties for other malt distilleries.
Colour: Iron Bru
Nose: Milk chocolate, banana skins, mocha, toffee, malty biscuits, grist, dry sherry/soft red grapes. Unsure if this has been matured in a sherry cask or not. But the nose would certainly point me that way.
Palate: Very malt driven for something of this age. Darker chocolate now, mint, caraway seeds – almost rye like in all honesty. Turmeric, bell pepper, ginger, overall much drier than you’d think for a lowland at 40%.
Finish: Reminds me a lot of the yellow label Littlemill 12YO, with a little bit more going on, still quite flat. Angostura bitters, the end of a Manhattan cocktail. Something herbaceous is creeping in and has a sour note attached to it, almost like gooseberry.
Assessment: It’s a little all over the place. The 40% hasn’t assisted that in any way, but it is different for a Lowland style, in no way do I think it’s a £1,200 bottle. You are literally paying for rarity over flavour with this one.