A single cask bottling of 1988 vintage Balmenach, hand picked by The Whisky Exchange and bottled by Signatory at 25 years of age. While you don't see many whiskies from this distillery, this one was a must pick as soon as we tried it - classic bourbon cask whisky, well-aged and packed with flavour.
A punchy and intensely flavoured Tormore from the Single Malts of Scotland, released at The Whisky Show 2013. Distilled in 1988, matured in a bourbon barrel and bottled in September 2013 at an impressive 64.2%. It takes water well...
An all-time classic, Glenfarclas 25yo is the epitome of long-aged sherried Speyside, gorgeously smooth and silkily-textured, with rich, generous flavours of fruitcake, hazelnuts, dried fruit and a hint of dark chocolate and coffee. A thoroughly delightful dram.
A 1988 vintage Highland Park bottled after 25 years of maturation in a single hogshead at full proof by Signatory in 2013 for their Cask Strength Collection. It was distilled on June 16th and bottled on November 22nd.
A bottle of Campbeltown Loch's now defunct 25 year old blended whisky (replaced by the 21 year old). The brand is owned by J & A Mitchell, so a large proportion of the malt can be expected to come from their Campbeltown distillery - Springbank.
A 25 year old Tamdhu, bottled to commemorate the 15th anniversary of the Old Malt Cask brand. Presented in a wooden box with the original style label, this was distilled in June 1988 and bottled in November 2013 from cask 13605. Bottlings of this age from Tamdhu are relatively rare and receive consistently high marks on the Malt Maniac's database, so we have high hopes for this one too.
A 25 year old from Speyside's Benriach, made using their peated spirit and sat at the top end of the age range for their peated whisky. This is the follow-up to the much-vaunted Authenticus 21yo and is claimed by the producers to show herb, honey and tropical fruit flavours alongside the smoke.
Introduced in 2010, after cask strength versions in 2004 and 2005, this is the first officially-bottled Caol Ila 25yo to be bottled at 43%. It's nice to see growing recognition for this excellent distillery, and this is a very welcome addition to the official range, with a rich, gentle mouthfeel and restrained, coal-esque phenols.
The first Knockando in Diageo's special releases line-up and a bit of a swerve from normal. Firstly, there's no vintage on the bottle, unlike their other expressions, and secondly it's matured solely in first fill sherry casks, for a heavily rich flavour.
The most recent extension of the revamped Ardmore brand (sister distillery to Laphroaig in the Jim Beam portfolio)is a cask-strength 25 year-old expression. Full and rich, with more than a hint of peat.
Previously a travel retail exclusive, The Glenrothes 25 year old is a well aged example of the distillery's style - rich and fruity. Bottled on 27th July 2007, this includes whiskies from 1967, 1972, 1977, 1979 and 1980 amongst others.
Jim Murray was very taken with this recently-launched Chivas Regal 25yo, describing it thus: "beautiful delivery...unbelievably juicy and mouthwatering...unadulterated class...leaves you demanding another glass. Brilliant!" Whisky Bible 2010: Scotch Blend of the Year (18 Years & Over); 95 Points