The Singleton of Dufftown 54 Years Old

The Singleton of Dufftown 54 Years Old

What they say

The Singleton Paragon of Time expressions are the oldest and rarest whiskies The Singleton has ever released – over half a century of skilled ageing embody the Paragon of Time series’ masterful exploration of time itself. Such long-matured whiskies only attain real character and true richness through great skill and care; shaped to perfection by our slow-crafting tradition.

This special bottling was crafted in Duftown in the 1960s – over half a century ago. Every process was slow; barley malted and turned by hand on the drying floor. The craftsmen of the past devoted their lives to these slow-crafting ways. Aged for 54 years, The Singleton Paragon of Time No.2 celebrates a precious oak butt cask that was slowly hand-filled on October 31st, 1966 and sealed in time, destined to become The Singleton’s oldest ever release. Finally, it was then given an exquisite final maturation using a Pedro-Ximenez Sherry-seasoned cask – a last act of mastery in the pursuit of true richness that only time, skill and patience can achieve.

Official tasting notes

  • APPEARANCE Rich deep amber.
  • BODY Light.
  • NOSE Mellow, mild and dry overall. The top-note is richly winey, as with a vintage solera wine; this scent fills the room. Fleeting suggestions of maraschino cherry and wax furniture polish lie beneath this, on a dusty base of waxed cotton jacket and hemp ropes, or in the warehouse, earthy floors and hessian sacks. A balancing light bitterness emerges through the sweet fruit, while a drop of water introduces a note of mint toffee.
  • PALATE At natural strength delicate in texture; light on its feet, lively for its great age and drying overall. Sweet in taste, beginning fruity and quickly becoming spicy. A Christmas pudding in a glass. Clove-studded oranges. Beneath, a bittersweet hint of burnt raisins.
  • FINISH Long, pleasantly warming and elegantly drying, with a light yet spicy sweetness, leaving a warm glow. A drop of water elevates the fruit and sharpens the finale.

What I say

Catching up on PR samples I should have sampled and posted a long time ago seems almost fitting here, it has waited 54 years, surely another 6 months or so won’t go amiss. To be fair this was launched live from the Greenwich Observatory at a time when it was deemed appropriate (due to the global pandemic) to have PR whisky launches at 2pm on Wednesday afternoons (the 2nd of June to be exact) – not entirely appropriate for those of us still working to be quaffing along at our desks. So despite the honour of being one of the first 54 people worldwide to sample this, I had to wait a little while longer.

Distilled in 1966 and matured for around 53 years this was then re-casked and finished in PX-sherry and carefully overseen by Diageo’s Master Blender Maureen Robinson. Maureen has a wealth of experience nurturing some of Diageo’s oldest stocks and getting the absolute best out of them. Bottled at 44.1% and producing only 235 bottles.

  • ABV 44.1%
  • Age 54 Years Old
  • Bottler Official
  • Bottling Paragon of Time
  • Cask Bourbon & Sherry
  • Category Single malt Scotch whisky
  • Cost £28,850
  • Origin Dufftown Distillery
  • Outturn 235 Bottles
  • Region Speyside
  • Released 2021
  • Vintage 1966

My tasting notes

  • Appearance Treacle (19/20), medium tears, quite quick moving and medium legs.
  • Nose Old, aged wood, cedar, clove and eucalyptus, softer dried fruit cakes, raisins, plum sauce and prunes, dried fig jam, toasted malt, mixed berry jam, beeswax, polished antique wood, antiques shop.
  • Taste Medium-bodied, polished, plum reduction, savoury, umami, beef and mushroom consomme, oak, cedar wood, black coffee, robust fruit cake nature, malt loaf with raisins, cheroot cigars, sweetness of maraschino cherries, prunes, silky and earthy dark chocolate, more red and black fruits, walnuts.
  • Finish Long, prunes, liqourice, dark chocolate, medicated cough drops cherry & herbs.
  • Overall Remarkably well-aged and rejuvenated whisky which is massively drinkable in no small part to the PX polish of sweet dried fruit, nut and chocolate influences layered over some really deep, fibrous and chewy old wood. Hugely complex as befitting its heritage and the era it was created and distilled but also fresh and approachable thanks to the finishing – this is an aged whisky made for drinking & enjoying!

Score 92/100

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