Arran Lochranza Reserve single malt scotch whisky

Isle of Arran Distillers

43% ABV, £34.95 from Master of Malt

Score: 83/100

ArranLochranzaReserve

What they say:

A citrus-y, light and elegant no-age-statement single malt Scotch whisky from the distillery on the Isle of Arran. The Lochranza Reserve replaced the Arran Original in mid-2014. The name comes from the village on the Isle of Arran where the distillery is located.

Tasting Note by The Chaps at Master of Malt

Nose:

Fresh green apples, lemon peels and a hint of milk chocolate. A touch of golden barley and sea breeze too.

Palate:

The salty sea air notes grow slightly on the palate, balanced with plenty of juicy citrus and sweet toffee pennies. Hints of oak spice.

Finish:

Relaxed and creamy on the finish.

ArranLR+GC

What I say:

The entry level single malt whisky from the Arran Distillery, produced with no age statement but still with natural colour, non- chillfiltering and at a substantial 43% ABV. This is Arran single malt at its simplest, selected to highlight the lighter side of maturation effects upon the Arran spirit by master distiller James McTaggart.

Colour:

Straw gold (5/20), medium slow-moving droplets leaving medium/loose trails

Nose:

Sweet, honey, cereal barley malt, slight citrus lemon and lime fruits, golden syrup, caramel sauce with a hint of salt, floral violets, with time a little more fruity apple and light plum with hints of chocolate can be found

Taste:

Sweet honey and lemon, cereal barley a little gristy/mealy, grassy and dry hay, parma violet sweeties, hints of sour and bitter elements add a depth and complexity, apple, pear, plum and milk chocolate again are revealed with time giving this quite a medium-bodied feel (quite weighty for NAS – as many are obviously thin and zesty/youthful)

Finish:

Medium-short, sweet cereal barley and bitter lemon

Overall:

Very pleasurable dram, a surprise to find a NAS whisky that has clearly been well-matured (no hiding behind added caramel here), initially a little honey and lemon standard NAS fare gives way to some real depth and true Arran distillery character. If I were to stock a standard NAS expression, I would be proud to have this one from Arran on my shelf any day.