A highlight from 2016 was attending the Old Pulteney Masterclass at Whisky Live Singapore.
Andy Hannah, Global Brands Development Manager of International Beverages, took us on a journey… providing my 1st sip of their new make spirit and an opportunity to revisit the 12, 17 and 21 year side-by-side.
New make spirit 69%
- Nose – Very organic, meaty, vegetative, light sulfur, walnut, leather, clean and robust
- Palate – An initial sting, then rich, quite remarkable how fruity it was on the palate
- Finish – Oily, lasts and lasts
Very forward, bursting with character.
Old Pulteney 12 year 40%
- Nose – A suggestion of salt, sugared nuts, vegetative, returned to find a splash of sweet spices
- Palate – Easy, light citrus, honey sweet, floral, smooth
- Finish – Short, snappy finish
Andy called this their everyday “all round dram” – easy to see why with such an approachable whisky. He also noted that if you are in the US expect to find it at 43% vs the balance of the world bottled at 40%.
Old Pulteney 17 year 46%
- Nose – Delightful citrus, tropical, peaches, guava, toffee
- Palate – Full and chewy style, more substance, soaked rains, lots of pears, More complexity, full mouth feel, more pronounced and intense, apricots, lots going on
- Finish – Dry and spicy
- Water – Can open up but don’t drown! (my personal preference is without water)
Andy described the 17 year as the “brother – forthright with lots to say” noting it is matured in oloroso sherry with a different style than the 12 or even 21 year Old Pulteney.
Old Pulteney 21 year 46%
- Nose – Soft, light, fresh fruits – particularly apple, pear, warm
- Palate – Coats the tongue beautifully, creamy spice yet soft. Wonderful, elegant, creamy mouthfeel with a hint of smoke
- Finish – Dry finish
- Water – Again can add but… really… why mess with a good thing?
Andy described the 21 year as the “refined, elegant sister.” Some comments around the table noted that it is far too easy to drink and hence quite dangerous!
Andy also shared this was the 2012 Jim Murray Whisky Bible world whisky of the year, with the influence of sherry, yet in a different direction than the 17 year.
Discussion then turned to queries about the Lighthouse range – Dunnet Head, Noss Head, Duncansby Head. Andy shared while all are NAS, they typically are 8-10 years.
Then queries about what makes the 89 Vintage so special? Andy called it a “happy accident” as it was matured in a cask that previously held Islay whisky so there was a soft peat touch.
When asked if there are likely to be more single casks released – he confirmed quite likely as and when something interesting is found.
Overall it was a mighty fine way to experience Old Pulteney with their affable knowledgable global brand manager.
PS – I was fortunate to be a guest at Whisky Live Singapore, courtesy of InterBev
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