Each of the Arrans in this series features illustrator Emily Chappell and a friend stranded on a desert island after an ill-fated kayaking trip. As you may know, there are often subtle differences between the labels of Boutique-y batches, however, and if you look carefully on the right hand side of Batch 4… you’ll see that she’s actually put up her Christmas tree!
A malty number this, causing Jim Murray to scream “good grief…!!… The malt intensity would go off most known charts” in his 2016 Whisky Bible (giving a score of 91.5 points). We enjoy the spiciness too, reminiscent of hot cross buns. When we mentioned that to Whisky Santa he scoffed though, and said something that sounded a bit like “s’bloody festive spice mate, you chaps dunno was’good f’ya” as the crumbs of multiple mince pies fell from his mouth.
What’s behind door number 11, Monty?
Tasting Note for Arran – Batch 4 (That Boutique-y Whisky Company):
Nose: Buttered hot-cross buns with plenty of sultanas, Refresher Bars, a little bit of rye spice and a whiff of coastal air. A drop of water brings creamy vanilla to the fore.
Palate: It opens with white grape, citrus and pineapple, which is swiftly joined by some rather powerful spicy malt and cinnamon. Cake icing (and a good chunk of cake too) gives balance on the mid palate.
Finish: Quite grassy and herbaceous on the finish, with orange blossom appearing right at the end.
Overall: Flavoursome with a good bit of power behind it, this is a delightful Arran single malt.
The Chaps at Master of Malt
* There’s a very small chance that you may instead find a dram of Auchentoshan Three Wood in your calendar, a triple-distilled Auchentoshan single malt that’s matured in bourbon casks as well as Pedro Ximénez and Oloroso Sherry casks!