Highland Park

Highland Park 19 Years Old 1995 4.214 After hours ~ 54.4% (SMWS)

Review: Highland Park 19 Years Old 1995 – 4.214 After hours

Category: Island single malt scotch whisky

Origin: Highland Park Distillery

Bottling: Scotch Malt Whisky Society Cask 4.214

ABV: 54.4%

Cost: £89.70 buy from SMWS

Score: 86/100

Scotch Malt Whisky Society

What they say:

Cask No. 4.214

We all got very hungry nosing this one. Aromas of lamb tagine spiced with cinnamon and cumin and served on couscous with dates, next to rosemary braised red cabbage accompanied by kabanos and for pudding butter pecan almond milk frozen dessert. The taste was hot, sweet and spicy like a Garam masala mix with cloves, cassia bark, nutmeg, cardamom and white peppercorns. Water added salt to the menu, saltpetre cured ham with roasted carrots and a tangy Tzatziki pasta salad. Still not hungry? The flavour was that of a pork souvlaki with fried garlic bread and lemons.

Drinking tip: For that late night revelry

Date Distilled: 30 November 1995 Colour: Winter sunlight Age: 19 years Flavour : Oily & coastal Cask Type: Refill ex-bourbon hogshead Whisky Region: Highland Island Outturn: 235 bottles

SMWS 4.124 After hours

What I say:

Sampled at the SMWS Big November Outturn preview tasting on 10th November 2015. Another fantastic SMWS Highland Park expression (SMWS Distillery code #4).

Colour:

Light straw/tallow gold (4/20) oily medium-sized tears

Nose:

Sweet heather honey, plenty of vanilla, fresh vanilla pods, vanilla cream, crème brulee, a pinch of sea salt, salted caramel, almond croissants, marzipan and some herbs and spices; cinnamon and rosemary.

Taste:

Initially too hot and spicy, dry/tannic oak wood, cinnamon, nutmeg, mace, cayenne pepper – too much, however a drop or two of water transformed this dram into pure raspberry ripple and vanilla ice-cream with cherry syrup and crushed nuts on top, delicious and rich, sweet, fruity and lots of fresh vanilla-like American cream soda, a Cream soda/raspberry ripple float in fact.

Finish:

Medium-long, creamy vanilla, honey sweetness, tannic oak wood and a wisp of mossy peat smoke

Overall:

A little too hot to handle neat, despite its 19 year maturation there is a lot of fire and spice from the refill cask. A drop of water however opens this whisky out beautifully revealing the more delicate characteristics of the Highland Park spirit. A touch of honeyed fruit and a wisp of smoke on a backbone of good sweet vanilla. Delicious!

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