Arran Royal Island Blend 30 Years Old
Blended malt scotch whisky
40% ABV, £120-£150 for 70cl
What they say:
A blend of Highland and Islay single malts all over 30 Years Old, produced exclusively for the Japanese market by Isle of Arran distillers.
What I say:
Occasionally a few of these turn up at auction here in the UK, again I was lucky enough to sample this thanks to Adam.
Dark russet/copper (17/20)
Leather, chocolate, cocoa, TCP, medicinal, walnut, brazil nut, oily, nutty, iodine, toffee, treacle, tobacco, cigar boxes, earthy peat smoke
Savoury, meaty, nutty, full-bodied, sherried fruits, dates, figs, raisin, walnut and brazil nut, tobacco leaf, dark chocolate, peaty and salty tang (salt caramel), toffee oak.
Long, treacle, nutty, dark chocolate with sea salt and caramel, wisps of earthy peat smoke
I must admit I had hold of this sample for far longer than I should have. I couldn’t believe just how good this blend is. Knowing little of the provenance (I often like to taste drams as blind as possible to prevent preconceptions!) I was blown away by the sheer power and quality and also beautiful balance of the Sherry-influence and deep yet gentle peat influence that had been expertly blended in this expression. A shame this isn’t more readily available and fetches upwards of £150 at auction these days.