I’m an unabashed Gordon & Macphail fan, so quite early in our explorations at the London Whisky Show, I made a “beeline” to their area! To get the full experience, we started at the beginning…
For the uninitiated, the Discovery line was created for just that – a place to begin your discovery of whisky at a reasonable price point. They colour code their offerings to help guide the approach… On offer was:
- Green for ex-bourbon casks – Glenallachie 14 year 43% (approx GBP 50)
- Purple for ex-sherry casks – Bunnahabhain 11 year 43% (approx GBP 46)
- Grey/off-white for smokey/peaty – Caol Ila 13 year 43%
My starting point was naturally the ex-bourbon expression.
GlenAllachie 14 year 43%
- Nose – Yum! Initially a bright toffee, cream, and butterscotch… then it was joined by young orchard fruits – like a granny smith apple – some honey then again shifted to vanilla cream
- Palate – Soft and creamy, like having a delicious cream puff that dissolves, some praline followed by more vanilla and a hint of malt and nuts join the desert approach
- Finish – Buttery goodness, rewarding with more vanilla with fudge
Having recently had a few newer styled GlenAllachie which tend to have a heavy play with sherry, I could immediately tell this was more “classic” in style. Our tasting guide confirmed this was indeed their approach – hence only ex-bourbon.
For us, this was a delightful ‘day malt” and a lovely way to ease into further whisky explorations. it has a nice ‘clean’ approach and a lovely dram worth repeating in a different environment than sniff, swish, and spit!
What about the sherry expression?
Bunnahabhain 11 year 43%
- Nose – No doubt there was a sherry stamp! Yet joining it was also vanilla, sweet caramel, and a hint of something like nutmeg, cloves, and a bit more saline or maritime
- Palate – Quite dry, dark chocolate, cinnamon, dark fruits like figs or plums
- Finish – Sweet spices, dry fruit
Quite a solid expression. Curious to know more? Check out what Gordon & Macphail have to say here.
I admit that I skipped the Caol Ila as didn’t want to shift into peat so early in the day.
So then… where did our whisky wanderings take us next?? To explore Gordon & Macphail’s Distillery Label series!
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