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A refill bourbon matured 1991 vintage from the Speyside distillery, Strathmill, bottled by Gordon and MacPhail.
The nose is fresh and quite light. Notes of Bramley apple and winter spice, a touch of pear and Cox’s apple peel with fragrant woods, honey and potpourri. Notes of rum with a perfumed note. The palate is of medium-body with a good sweetness. There are notes of winter fruitcake with spice and cloves with notes of liquorice. There are hints of vanilla sugar and melted butter. The finish is dry and spirity.
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I don't remember my first taste of whisky. I only know my mother told me she rubbed neat whisky on my gums when I was teething as a baby. It was the tradition then though you'd probably have Social Services round if you did that now. Then My Grandmother used to put scotch in my tea (from the age of about 5) to warm me in winter. I loved my Gran. Why all this nostalgia? Because sipping this dram gave me a Proustian flashback. My mother used to give me cod liver oil with malt as a "tonic". Add to this that a special treat on a weekend might be a bottle of cream soda and you might get where I'm coming from.This rare bottling of Strathmill popped up in my local (high class) liquor store a few weeks ago and I snapped it up because I had enjoyed the F&F 12 yr bottling so much. This afternoon I sat down in my best chair to taste them head-to-head.The nose is all vanilla, malt and plum duff. At first taste it is quite sweet though not sickly, reminds me a little of The Glenlivet 12. It is way more spicy than Glenlivet though and I would serve this as an accompaniment to Christmas Pudding. Just before the finish the vanilla is really strong and then it dries out to leave a long, woody, liquorice aftertaste. Just what you need on Xmas day when the relatives are very dull.
15th January 2016