Review: anCnoc Blas
Category: Speyside single malt scotch whisky
Origin: Knockdhu Distillery
Bottling: Official – Inver House Distillers
ABV: 54 %
What they say:
Blas, Gaelic for ‘taste’, has been created in partnership with Scottish fashion designer Patrick Grant. The unique bottle and tube design embodies everything anCnoc represents; its Highland home, rich heritage and the spirit of A Modern Tradition.
anCnoc teamed up with Scottish-born fashion designer, Patrick Grant, to design a limited edition expression.
Known best for his role as creative director of bespoke tailors Norton & Sons of Savile Row, his work is the epitome of quality and craftsmanship, much like the work undertaken at the Knockdhu distillery to produce our curiously modern single malt Scotch.
Patrick has created this design to embody everything anCnoc represents; its Highland home, rich heritage and the spirit of A Modern Tradition. What’s more he also had a little help from anCnoc’s fans who took to social media to submit images and messages to inspire his final design. Scroll through the image gallery to reveal more about the design journey.
This Limited Edition expression has matured in Spanish and American oak, and has been bottled in its most natural form, neither chill-filtered nor coloured.
What I say:
Blas is the latest release from anCnoc, presented at a stout 54% ‘cask strength’ ABV. Following on from their recent #ModernTradition trend and collaborative work with the Scots born illustrator Peter Arkle, this time the bottle and packaging design come courtesy of Patrick Grant. Patrick is well known as a Saville Row tailor and more recently has produced a clothing line Hammond & Co for Debenhams, however Patrick is probably best known for his role as a judge on the Great British Sewing Bee. Many thanks to Inver House & anCnoc for the official sample.
Refractive and bright amber gold (10/20) slow medium-sized tears leave fine legs
Initially sweet floral and citric, a light spice develops including cinnamon, ginger and white pepper, dusty cereal barley flour fresh from the mill mingles with light orchard fruits, vanilla-rich white chocolate and coconut and chocolate coated toffees add to this sweet and spicy aroma.
Polished highland toffee with spicy stem and crystallized ginger, white pepper and nutmeg grow to almost chilli-like heat, this fades into butterscotch fudge, lemon oil citrus with hints of herbal rosemary, bitter grapefruit descends into milk chocolate and coconut (bounty bars) and finally dark cocoa powder and coffee grounds. The potent heat and spice at full strength were tempered by a generous splash of water revealing sweeter and more fragrant lemon curd pastries.
Medium-long sweet citrus fruit and spices balanced with bitter grapefruit and chocolate
Spicy and challenging at full strength but hints at a good depth, for us this was interesting as presented but much more enjoyable when reduced with water. This takes water well so has the added bonus of stretching out your drinking pleasure (or bottle volume) through dilution. This is reminiscent of a beefed-up version of the anCnoc 12 Years Old expression which we regard quite highly already. The bottle and packaging also sport a very colourful design incorporating lots of elements associated with anCnoc and their whisky production – making this stand out on the shelves.
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