Our explorations of Highland peaty drams led us to Edradour distillery with a full cask strength dram.
Ballechin Heavily Peated 12 year (May 2017) 1st Fill ex-Bourbon Cask 330 54.5% 251 Bottles
- Colour – Bright gold
- Nose – Wow! Floral yet with a power punch, some sharpness, sweetly herbal, cinnamon, star anise, then the floral dissipated to be replaced by maple bacon, honey sweetness with a citrus twist
- Palate – Honey, maple syrup, very dry, holds and took on that distinctive maple bacon whisky, substance
- Finish – Nutty, toothpaste, lovely spice, iodine
- Water – Sour with no spice… given time revealed cinnamon then a nutty quality, like pressed almond oil
Our final conclusion was this would be a perfect monsoon whisky… one to enjoy when the heavy rains wash away all the heat and pollution, dropping the temperature too.
What did the folks at The Whisky Exchange have to say?
A single-cask Ballechin bottled at a cask-strength of 54.5% and exclusive to The Whisky Exchange, this heavily-peated single malt from Edradour distillery boasts a smoky, farmyard character to rival any Islay whisky. Balanced by sweet citrus and hints of honey, this is a fantastic dram which elegantly combines sweet, savoury and smoky notes to memorable effect.
- Nose: Sweet and green smoke at first: freshly sawn branches newly tossed on to a bonfire of burning pine. Hints of jelly-baby fruitiness develop, along with Vick’s Vaporub, honey and lemon lozenges and white toast with honey. The lighter notes at the front obscure but don’t hide a darker background of rich smoke.
- Palate: Savoury smoke to start: smoked ham and signed lemons. White pepper heat mixes with bicycle-tire inner tubes, sharp lemon curd and a hint of creosoted fence. A bubble of black liquorice rises from the depths, bursting to reveal blackcurrants and anise.
- Finish: Tar and char fade to leave bittersweet liquorice and lemon butter sauce.
- Comment: Softer than many Ballechins, this brings together sweet and savoury notes, all wrapped up in a smoky blanket.
And what would it set you back? If, like our Whisky Lady, you purchased it from The Whisky Exchange in London, expect something around £80.
What else did we sample in our Whisky Ladies Peaty Highland drams evening?
- Inchmoan 12 year 46% (Loch Lomond Distillery Island Collection) – A Highland whisky from Loch Lomond distillery
- Aird Mhor 8 year (2009/2018) 55.3% (Single Malts of Scotland) – Another Highland dram from Ardmore distillery
What else have I tried from Edradour distillery?
- From Whisky Live 2018 – Edradour Ballechin
- And from a delightful miniatures session – Edradour 12 year ‘Caledonia’ 43%
- An evening focused on Signatory bottling – Edradour 10 year (2004) 46%
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