Craigellachie 17 Years Old ~ 46% (Bacardi Ltd.)

Speyside single malt scotch whisky

46% ABV, £80.95 for 70cl

Score: 85/100

Craigellachie17yo

What they say:

Craigellachie distillery sits nestled in the heart of Speyside atop a rock overlooking the confluence of two great rivers, the Fiddich and the Spey. The distillery was built by Peter Mackie and Alexander Edward in 1891 and still uses traditional worm tubs giving the resulting malt a distinctive meaty, sulphury character.

A caustic candy store. Vanilla, exotic fruits. Sweet treats. Then the sucker punch; a jab of aromatic liquorice and a smooth, smouldering end. A nippy sweetie of a nip.

What I say:

Sampled in the Bacardi Last Great Malts whisky snug at the Edinburgh Whisky Stramash 2015

Colour:

Antique yellow gold (7/20), thick, slow droplets and trails

Nose:

Fruity orachard fruit, apple, peach, plum, vanilla crème brulee, cinnamon hints, vanilla cream, honey, sulphuric, swampy/boggy and mossy, cereal barley malt and butterscotch, with time a slight chemical paint-stripper aroma was detected which developed into fireworks and particularly the smell of sparklers.

Taste:

Sulphury and mossy ‘bite’, lots of fruit/fruit medley, heavy and waxy and slightly fermented, apple mash – as in cider making, blossom honey and toffee, caramelised sugars – almost burnt, a little like making jam in copper pans, malty, more vanilla and caramel from the oak wood and a faint hint of cigarette smoke

Finish:

Medium-long, sweet fruity jam; apple, pear, apricot then metallic scouring pads on copper pans

Overall:

Thick, rich and meaty with lots of cupric and sulphurous character synonymous with Craigellachie, this is delivered on a base of sweet honeyed fruits and vanilla and caramel oak wood. A distinct increase in intensity of flavours were discovered here compared to the 13 year old entry level expression. In fact a greater depth of the coppery/sulphuric nature appeared to be presented in a much deeper bodied whisky. For me bang per buck this 17 year old expression was the most pleasing and enjoyable.