Review: Clynelish 14 Years Old 1998 casks 2460 & 2461 (Signatory)

Category: Highland single malt scotch whisky

Origin: Clynelish Distillery

Bottling: Signatory casks 2460 & 2461

ABV: 43%

Cost: £35.06 from Master of Malt

Score: 86/100

clynelish-14-year-old-1998-casks-2460-and-2461-signatory-whisky

What they say:

A Clynelish from two single casks (2460 and 2461) yielding 821 bottles. Distilled 18th February 1998.

Clynelish 14 Years Old 1998 Cask 2460 2461 Signatory

What I say:

A 14 year old ‘small batch’ Clynelish produced from marrying two casks together. Clynelish is typically a waxy/oily dram reportedly due to the build-up of sludgy residues in the feints and foreshots receiver as a direct result of the failure to clean this vessel annually (as would be performed in other distilleries). This waxy/oily quality assists in carrying the flavour of the whisky, coating the roof of the mouth and thereby extending the palate and finish. As such it is an integral part of many of the Johnnie Walker blended scotch whiskies. The recent expansion plans to double output at Clynelish have stalled and for much of 2016 no distillation at all will occur here due to the necessary replacement of numerous pieces of distilling equipment. As a compensatory measure it has been rumoured that Diageo’s Dailuaine distillery failed to clean their feints and foreshots receiver at the last annual silent period, allowing hopefully another (Dailuaine already claim capacity for generating 3 or 4 distinct distillate/spirit types for use in blending) type of spirit to replace the Clynelish component of JW blends.

Colour:

Light straw gold (4/20), thick heavy and oily tears

Nose:

Sweet and gentle, honeyed cereal barley, lemon puff biscuits, lemon tart, beeswax furniture polish, fruity and juicy pears and apples, grapefruit (citric)

Taste:

Light and cleansing, slightly creamy and milky vanilla and coconut milk, refreshing lemon and apple, sweet honey, cereal barley malt, beeswax, polished oak wood, sugary crème brulee, brown or cane sugar, cinnamon-spiced zesty and juicy grapefruit

Finish:

Medium length, drying cinnamon spice and toffee oak wood

Overall:

Juicy and sweet this expression was a little zesty in places and possessed that distinctive Clynelish waxiness that was both mouth-coating and slighty drying in combination with the spiced and tannic oak wood