SMWS “Riding a duck bareback up Mount Etna” 9 year 64.5%

Next in our Bombay Malt & Cigar Scotch Malt Whisky Society evening was “Riding a duck bareback up Mount Etna”. Aside from a wee bit of eye rolling at the name, we settled immediately into sampling…

What did we find?

30.94 “Riding a duck bareback up Mount Etna” 9 year (6 June 2007) 64.5%

Speyside, 1st fill Spanish Oak ex-sherry butt, 666 bottles

  • Nose – Coconut, leather saddle, thick honey, 70% bitter chocolate, plums, chocolate covered acai berries, marshmallow, biscuits, toffee
  • Palate – Sweet cinnamon spice, bursting with character, quite dry almost like a PX or Madeira, roasted salty nuts, rich, creamy with a bit of chocolate
  • Finish – Holds…. bitter, a bit woody with more of the cinnamon spice

This is a BIG bold whisky with tremendous complexity. Remarkable to have so much going on after only 9 years. It was also incredibly smooth and balanced for such a powerful alcohol strength – hard to imagine we were sipping 64.5%?!?

In short – we loved this one! It hit all the right elements for complexity…. even after opening for over a hour, the nose still held its own with big toffee sweetness, nicely rounded on the palate and a finish with staying power.

As for guessing? Names such as Glendronach, Glenrothes and a few others were tossed about. With the reveal, delighted to discover it was indeed a Glenrothes.

Here is what the SMWS folks have to say:

We stood at the foot of the volcano; a towering eminence of tightly packed fruitcake and sticky toffee pudding, and gazed up towards the bellowing clouds of pork crackling infused smoke. Climbing onto the back of a giant duck and gripping the leather reins we began our ascent with the spicy smell of nutmeg, clove and cinnamon becoming heavier as we advanced. The ground shook as figs, dates and roasted chestnuts were blasted high into the sky and rivers of molten toffee passed nearby. Sipping export strength navy rum to steady our nerves we bravely continued further towards the summit passing boulders of macadamia nuts, honeycomb and salted chocolate.

DRINKING TIP: Drink whilst reading Tolkien stories to the devil.

What else did we sample in our SMWS evening?

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