The Ghosted Reserve 21 year was the inspiration for the evening of blends and mystery malts. We tried the 2nd release which features spirits from three closed Lowland distilleries – Ladyburn, Inverleven and Dumbarton.
Ghosted Reserve 21 year 42.8% Bottle No 89
- Nose: Very pronounced coconut oil! Lots of bananas, pineapple, some beautiful floral notes, then fully back to the tropics then shifting to more citrus fruits. It reminded us of Malibu coconut rum and piña coladas!
- Palate: Wow! We lost all the rum and instead found a light delightful desert drink, a wonderful oiliness, terrific mouthfeel, lots of dried desiccated sweet coconut, then hints of pepper peaking out, fruits still there – juicy and tropical
- Finish: The most disappointing element as it was too subtle… after such a distinctive nose and quite delicious initial flavours it somehow drifted away
It actually reminded me a bit of the Nikka Coffey Grain or Compass Box Hedonism, with the grain elements quite pronounced – in a good way. Wonderfully tropical with coconut the consistent element. For one, this was his first encounter with such a whisky style.
Here’s what the chaps over at Master of Malt have to say:
- Nose: Orange and lime peels, with a hint of orchard blossom developing later on. Hints of toffee and raisins.
- Palate: Another helping of orange peels on the palate, joined by banana and sharp tropical fruit. A touch of peppery malt.
- Finish: Floral on the finish, with a slight nod towards milk chocolate buttons.
For those curious about the distilleries, here is a synopsis about the trio of lost Lowland distilleries.
Ladyburn (Lowland), William Grant and Sons (1966-1975)
- Ladyburn distillery was actually two sets of stills in the same complex as Girvan, a grain distillery.
- While intended to supply malt whisky for the Grant blends, it was operational for less than a decade.
- One can find a few rare bottles of Ladyburn whisky bottled under the name Ayrshire, named after the area where Girvan is located.
- Located on the border between the Highlands and Lowlands, Inverleven and Dumbarton shared a distillery with a column still for production of grain whisky (Dumbarton) and two pot stills for malt (Inverleven).
- Once upon a time, Dumbarton was Scotland’s largest grain distillery, drawing water from Loch Lomand (not to be confused with the Loch Lomand distillery) of which a Lomand still was introduced from 1959.
- Inverleven was intended to provide whisky for blending, however blenders never took to the Lomond spirit.
- While the Dumbarton complex was mothballed in 2002, the equipment from Inverleven has gained new life at the Lochindaal distillery opened by Bruichladdich at Port Charlotte.
In addition to the Ghosted Reserve, our mystery malts and vatted blends evening featured:
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