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Old Pulteney 21 Year Old

(70cl, 46%)

Old Pulteney 21 Year Old

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Old Pulteney 21 Bottling Note

Malt from the most northerly mainland distillery in Scotland. This 21yo is an exceptionally well-matured version well worth a try. This was just rated the best whisky in the in Jim Murray's 2012 Whisky Bible.

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Old Pulteney 21 Year Old Reviews

If you have a bottle left = Enjoy :)

Feel privileged to have been able to enjoy a bottle of this wonderful whisky !
Even got it on offer at £96 around 18 months ago & now sadly they're fetching around £300 as they're no longer available over the counter.
Knew i should have bought 2 :'(

20th July 2018

I agree with Jim Murray's assessment in "The Whiskey Bible."

My favorite so far. Previously it was Glenmorangie 18 year extremely rare. I'm hoping they re-continue it. I'm running low.

25th November 2017

Smooth honey and butterscotch. The very lightest splash of water unfolds some really wonderful citrus. One of the better highland scotches

One of my favorites

27th July 2017

Would try this again.

Very smooth, easy to drink, subtle after taste.

17th May 2017

Wish it was more available in USA

my favorite by far

22nd March 2017

Beautiful stuff

Smooth with a distinct citrus and butterscotch after taste.
Beautiful specimen really!

6th January 2017

Try this

I like it in a snifter that is been heated up. really brings up the citrus and butterscotch flavors and aromas. Yummm!

13th December 2016


Old Pulteney to me reminds me of dad, old, well blended, mature and Christmas isn't Christmas without!

1st December 2016

Old Pulteney 21

By far one of the best non peated whiskys I ever tasted. Very complex, full bodied, long aftertaste, bit of honey. I always end with OP21 during tastings ...and everybody agreeing it is divine whisky.

16th October 2016

A great one!

Rarely do I pay any attention to Jim Murray's ratings, but this one is well worth the price. I love it so much, I stocked up on 12 bottles. Not as superb and complex as the 25, but if you are looking for a surprising bottle for the price, you really should try this. Great neat, or maybe let the ice melt.

28th September 2016


Hard to believe it sat in a container for 21 years and its still just good but not great. It's a bit boring and a tad harsh. Nice and easy to drink though. A middle class burgeoning alcoholic would probably love it.

11th August 2016

Truly Tasty

I'm a total novice when it comes to scotch, but I've tasted a ton of different varieties. I've never taken notes or thought hard about what I was drinking. I ran across this the other day and just had to buy a bottle. This single malt has one of the best finishes I've tasted in a long time. Would highly recommend.

I've been seeing a lot of notes about the 17 in the comments. I guess I'll need to pick that up as well!

31st May 2016

Re: Is this REALLY Whisky?

Due to having drunk half a bottle (I am not bragging by the way) I forgot to give it a rating; then again, I have noticed far lesser Whiskies given 5 stars.
May I suggest - as history has taught us - " nothing lasts forever"........which may include - OLD PULTENEY 21

21st May 2016

Is this REALLY Whisky?

All I can say is "OMG" (Oh my goodness) - WHISKY is an astringent product, best ingested with water, ice, soft drink, beer, name it...............and then comes along (some thing new to myself) that is as easy to drink as CORDIAL! Having consumed MANY Whiskies over three decades I can honestly say - "THIS IS AS GOOD AS IT GETS" ........but PLEASE...drink it neat! PS:

20th May 2016


It's very rare for me to have an amazing whisky. I've tried so many whisky's and a lot of them weren't impressing me. When I heard about this whisky winning best whisky in the world from Jim Murray's Whisky Bible 2012, I was a bit nervous buying the whisky. I've had whisky's that he's voted that didn't impressive me at all, one of those whisky's was Ballentine's 17 Year Old. I liked the whisky, but it wasn't anything special, in my opinion. However, Old Pulteney 21 Year Old was incredible! The aromas and tasting notes were perfect in this whisky; it's not too spicy, not too sweet, it has a perfect balance of texture and flavor. It's a work of art!

31st March 2016

Oh my...

What a lovely dram. Oh my...

Oak, vanilla, caramel, fruit, green grass... Softly smoked. Some leather, yes. Dried apricots. Light pepper, citrus and maritime theme with the dry salty finish.

Intens and full-bodied. Perfectly balanced and aged. Smooth. A real pleasure. A lot here...

31st December 2015

Scotch Booty

After deciding to FINALLY open my treasured bottle of 21 y/o Old Pulteney so I gathered two of my favorite Scotch snobs. My experience on the nose were notes of mild MILD smoky spices that seemed to linger for minutes on end. I enjoy mine neat and after nosing my glass for a few minutes I took a solid 1/2 oz. taste and held on for a 10 count before pushing it over the back of my tongue and down the gullet. I had cleansed my pallette with a piece of dry parmesian cheese and the taste came on gradually and smoothly. A nice tang with complicated notes of sweet molasses and honey with a lingering creamy grassy finish that lasted and lasted. No burn, just creamy, peaty goodness ! Give this a try ! I'll go out on a limb here and say that may be one the best I have ever tasted.

21st November 2015

Quality. worth the money.

After spending some time nosing my glass the sprit's initial spiciness vanished and mellowed to a tangy orange, and molasses. The arrival is soft with sweet vanilla cream up front. the finish is not what I expected; a flavor explosion. Dried raspberry's, oaky, honey, green grass. Really dry and pungent in a good way. If you have the money and want a good drink give it a try.

4th September 2015

Pleasant but Pricey

We bought this for my father in law, who is quite particular and usually sticks to Macallan 18 or Glenrothes, and he raved about it and gave this a 10. My husband, who does not usually drink, also enjoyed the taste and rated this a 9. I gave it a 9 as well, as indicated below.

When poured neat, I found the nose to be softly smokey and slightly salty- it reminded me of the air along the California coast during wildfire season. The taste was impressively full and spicy- I found the peppery taste dominated to profile, creating a full mouth feel. The finish was precise and clean- it was almost disappointing after the big initial taste- but left no lingering burn or warmth in the throat.

When slightly cooled, the nose remained underwhelming for the impact of the taste. The taste opened up into the delicious honey, toffee, and grassy notes reported by other tasters, and the pepper moved into the background to still provide a full-mouthed feel without overwhelming the scotch. This was definitely my preferred service method.

Though the price is competitively reasonable, it is high enough I wouldn't recommend this for a casual gift or a new scotch drinker, but I do think it is a solid choice for anyone looking to splurge and branch out a little or expand their tasting profiles.

6th July 2015

my favorite so far

Best I've tasted so far. Unfortunately i got a bad batch the second time i ordered it. But when it's fresh it's magnificent. Stong flavor with a long peaty finish that is void of smoke...i love it. Next i have to try yamazaki sherry 2013 to decide the undisputed winner!

23rd May 2015

Lovely one

The nose is subtle, with a mixture of oil, leather, spices. Yet when I have a sip, I feel it is round and creamy. But hold on, after another few seconds, it becomes so powerful and the taste of caramel, honey and spices come out with a long and smooth finish. I enjoy it very much.

20th March 2015

One of the best

From a neat pour, I found the nose was not very strong and somewhat of a muddled and confusing mix of salt, raisins, damp leather, and spices. After really opening up, sweeter notes of pineapple, pear, and vanilla bean came thru. The palate is light and creamy with a beautiful maltiness that plays against toffee, honey, and grassy notes. The finish is long and lovely, with a firm nip of spice that rounds out the experience.

Despite a weaker nose, overall, this perfectly aged dram is a wonderful experience and something every whisky lover should have on the shelf.

2nd March 2015

This is a must try

I have tried 100's of whisky s and have regular whisky tasting/gatherings with an attempt to bring the best the world has to offer to the table. This dram is one of the finest I recall. Some review I have read state it is not worth the additional charge over the 17 year old. I have a bottle of 17 given as a present and will open next week and am really looking forward to it. If it's anywhere near as good as the 21 I will be thrilled.

27th December 2014

I agree with Jim Murray

Just astonishing and a absaloubtly delightful exsperiance and worth the money every day of the year and a must try for malt whisky fans !!!

26th November 2014


As accessible as Glenmorangie 10 yo, but with a depth and balance I have not experienced before. This is a very, very good whiskey. No wonder it won so many awards. Highly recommended.

5th November 2014

A truly sublime and beautiful experience !

I have reviewed this once or twice before and yet I still find my self coming back to tell everyone how much of a magical experience this dram is !. I'm not going to tell you all how and what it tastes of I've all ready done that but what I will say if the "potter" world produced a whisky then I would put money on it this would be it !. - Just an experience a malt whisky lover has try.

12th August 2014


Admittedly I've not been tasting top-shelf whiskies for long, just a few months. And of those I've found Islay malts have far more appeal to me. Now that warmer weather is here I thought I'd go for a more delicate one, but this really just didn't do it for me. I agree with all the previous reviews, that it's sneakily light on the nose and palate, but destroys you on the finish. But to me it was just like any old light-flavored Canadian whiskey. Granted it was a splendid, perhaps supreme, example of such, with the bad stuff mostly removed and the good stuff accentuated tenfold. And oh that finish does leave you longing for more. But at the end of the day, there was just nothing I could place my finger on to make me say "I have to get another bottle of this". So I may have to go back to bourbon as my warm weather malt-of-choice. Anyway I won't rate it because I don't want to bring down something I don't have the ability to appreciate, and maybe as my palate develops I'll give it another shot, but for now that's my review.

26th May 2014

Naughty minx

so this is nice. delicate fruity and zesty, okay I'm intrigued.. then all of a sudden kapow! we're in business. truly wonderful experience.

4th May 2014

Top shelf

Had the pleasure of enjoying a dram while in Edinburgh at Bow Bar. I have since acquired a bottle for my collection. This one is a sneaky one. Light on the nose and a gentle at the start. Then a nice smooth taste that is refreshing yet bold. It finishes with a peak and leaves you wanting more. So, I had a second. This 21 year competes with with some of the best, in my book at least. I can see why Jim Murray gave it gold. Recommend a taste or two

30th March 2014


Truly beautiful whisky. Says it all. Buy and enjoy.

9th January 2014

It's a creeper

The nose is unspectacular, but light and lovely non the less. The dram comes alive at the finish, as the fruits and caramel comes out at the end. 1 sip and you are pleased, 2 and you are engulfed, 3 and this malt really sparks your taste buds.

14th December 2013

17 or 21?

So I started with the 17 year old and have to say I liked it a lot, so I guessed I should move on to the 21 as Jim Murray seems to like it who am I to argue so the thing is, is it better? Well to be honest it is but is it £30 better I'm not so sure. So this is how I look at it when the 21 year old runs out would I buy the 21 again or the 17 and it would be the 17 and then put the £30 left over towards another whisky. That said its a great whisky!!!

24th August 2013

how deliciously odd...

a bad start. upon opening, the bloody cork disintegrated! luckily I had those good ol twisty cork things around to surgically fish it out without leaving a big mess...anyway onwards: a nice big "glug" as a pour a generous dram into a whisky glass. the colour is a rich golden amber and after a tea spoon of water and a few swirls, i dug my nose deep in for a sniff. lots of caramel and fruit. quite oily on the lips. the initial explosion is of vanilla fruit caramel honey and anything else sweet I can think of bounces around the mouth like a game of squash. reminds me a bit of the balvanie 12 at this point. it is unquestionably smooth (I hate using that word is describing whiskys). the surprize and most memorable aspect of the drink has to be the after taste which kicks in VERY late and lasts VERY long... an explosion of spice. not of the pepper variety but more of a "ginger dynamite"... layers and layers of it... how odd... I think to savour the drink properly, one should definitely let the entire end-game pass by before starting again... not something that can be appreciated in quick succession... Perhaps I might try with an ice next time but I think the spices will thrive more in neat form... and now I'm gonna go hunt down something to cork up the tasty bastard...

23rd December 2012

oh sweet shinobi

What a sneeky little gem this is. Took my delivery of this yesterday and I dont know if it's a bad sign or a good sign that I was immediately cracking this open for a taste; given that it was 9am. So are the chores of life. Caught me totally off guard, the nose was very light and subtle with delicate fruit and floral notes and something every so slightly sweet - not what I expected for something 21 years old. Times for breakfast, so down the hatch it goes; initially sweet, full and very smooth - I do like indeed, an not what I was expecting following the nsoe. All of a sudden something ignites in my mouth like these guys from Wick have managed to cleverly conceal a tiny stick of dynamite inside this scotch, it's not alcohol burn but layers of spice kicked out of nowhere - yee gods! ....and then it's gone, back down to a long aftertaste of honey and trails off to a nice drying finish which has got me reaching the glass for more. This is a whisky Ninja! It's all stealth and sneek and then when you least expect it, bam, it attacks and then slinks off and quiet toes. Stunning.

25th October 2012

Whisky Taster

Excellent lasting flavour and great for collection.

31st July 2012

like getting up on christmas eve to see santa.. only to find you parents.

Sadly for me this wasn't the one. I built myself up for months wanting the right moment to open this bottle. And sip this wonder malt i have grown fond of with the 12yr old always having a bottle in cupboard. And the occasional 17yr old. It's a lovley malt but just lacks that salty browned butter I like in other samples. I can't get to grips with the after taste of lime or the lack of punch I expect. I have put back in cupboard now to have
a rethink once I'm over the let down. For me I'm still a fan but just not of this one.

11th July 2012


It was good. I was pleased.

12th May 2012

Very nice

Its very nice.

29th December 2011


I have been drinking whisky for 2 years now and have a collection of 20 or so 10 – 12 year what I call “high street” whisky’s. I feel that my palate has now evolved somewhat and I feel brave enough to try some of the better vintage malts. When I found out about Old Pulteney winning the whisky bible gold medal I felt compelled to buy it as surely £75 was a fair price to pay for the best “whisky in the world”, and the bottle would mark a new stage of my love affair with the water of life.

So on with the review.

The body
I poured a good neat dram into a glencairn glass and gave it a good swivel. The colour was intense amber and golden hue and when I swivelled it around in the glass the legs on that beauty were better then a leggy stockings model.

The nose.
I stuck my nose quite deep into the glass and took an almighty sniff. The overwhelming scent was that of spices with quite a floral undertone to it. I could also just about make out some coco also. I was expecting a stronger scent for such a matured whisky but that is just an observation rather then a criticism.

The taste
It was a weird experience tasting this as I guess I had built up this whisky so much in my mind that the actual event almost passed me by. I swallowed the first mouthful and my first words after that were “hmmm”. Hmmm is not good, and to me it tasted no better then my standard 12 year Balvenie double wood.

I thought to myself I’m not ready for premium whiskies and that I was some sort of whisky philistine who couldn’t appreciate the good stuff. No matter ill give it another go. Then it hit me; that 2nd mouthful was a joyous mixture of caramel, honey and floral flavours that assaulted my pallet in a well co-ordinated pincer movement. Wave upon wave of deep and layered flavours that danced around in my tongue and the roof of my mouth like a celtic jig. That was more like it.

The finish
The finish was the best part, as it was a quite long but smooth, oh so very smooth finish. For no apparent reason the finish also produced a massive grin on my face that induced a euphoric like state in my mind. I was beaming and I didn’t know why.

Don’t make the same mistake as me and become so hung up on drinking the “best” whisky in the world that you miss the main event. Concentrate on what you’re drinking and you will be richly rewarded by what is a very accessible tipple to the newly initiated like me. This is definitely a flagship bottle of whisky in my collection which the cork will see the light of day on birthdays weddings and births.

A must for any whisky drinker who like me are looking to take a step up to a premium tipple.

10th November 2011

Very Possibly the best in the World's just been awarded ?"WORLD WHISKY OF THE YEAR 2012." by the prestigious "Jim Murray's Whisky Bible.” Scoring a record-equalling 97.5 points out of 100, it is only the third time that a single malt has ever won the prestigious award, and the distillery is just the second Scottish distillery to do so.

Up to now I haven't been a big fan of OP's as they never seemed to quite delivery the complexity I yearned for. But this one should be different...

Initial impressions are good, its a great looking bottle of course and the dram has a beautiful golden glow about it, promising plenty of depth. After a satisfying glugging sound when poured, the nose is quite unique! Fruity, full, slightly spicy and complex. I spent ages and ages just nosing this one trying to pin down the smells. It's just so complex, but begs you to drink it. Its a sexy beast of a whisky to smell I can assure you of that.

And so to the tasting. A sizeable gulp, held in the mouth for 10 seconds and swallowed. To use my daughters expression...omg! First off, its mouth-filling, full bodied and beautifully balanced. Delivering sweetness and balanced fruit flavour only equalled by its smoothness. Theres a hint of sherry and light spice. This is a VERY sophisticated whisky.

My initial thoughts were that Jim Murray has turned a corner with his ratings as previously he often went for malts that delivered a smoke back note (or more). Not so here, this is a complex and exceptionally well balanced dram.

The finish is loooooong and actually made me laugh out loud. I truly thought it wouldn't live up to the accolade, but I was wrong. For me, this well deserves the title of Best Whisky in the World 2012. Its absolutely awesome and now stands pride of place in my 70+ collection. Well done to the guys at OP, you have created an almost perfect whisky.

27th October 2011

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