I like heavier, full bodied whisky, and Clynelish (especially if not chill filtered) is right out there in front of the pack, known for its waxiness and heft. The modern day Clynelish distillery was built in 1968, with stills that are the exact replicas of the old Clynelish distillery which was built in 1819 (later revived and renamed Brora). Without reopening a subject I discussed last week in the second Brora post, I will say that running a medium-peated batch through the stills would actually create the exact new make Brora did (well, almost, as it would be a different strain of barley, but that could probably be remedied too).
The distillery style is a blender’s dream, as it gives body to any blend. Indeed, until 2004, there was no official bottling Clynelish, other than a 14 year old Flora and Fauna bottling, when the official Clynelish 14 was released. Besides the Flora and Fauna bottlings, seven expressions were bottled under the Rare Malts Selection label between 1995 and 1998, all between 22 and 24 years of age.
Like many of Diageo’s blending malts, many casks of Clynelish made their way to independent bottlers, and in this mini series looking at Clynelish expressions, We’ll look at some of them. The first is an Adelphi 17 year old.
Adelphi Selection Clynelish 17 Year Old, Distilled 1997, Cask 6417 Yielding 264 Bottles (57.1% ABV, NCF, NC)
Appearance: Bronze with thin and slow legs and an abundance of droplets sticking on the glass for a long while.
Nose: Waxy dough, dried fruit, fruit soup, clove, balsamic vinegar, cinnamon and sultanas. 10 drops of water tease out more of the sherry with more dried fruit and some honey with the beeswax of the honeycomb.
Palate: Orange peel, light pepper and cinnamon. The whisky is full bodied and rather dry with some dusty/spicy quality. It has an almost fizzy quality on the tongue. The water livens it up even more.
Linger: Long spice in the back of the throat, a tannic tingle on the inside of the cheeks with a dry/waxy feel in the mouth and on the teeth.
WOW, this whisky is alive, like a hot wire!
A lot of depth and a fabulous interplay between the heavy spirit and the sherry. A serious sherry bomb, and a real beauty.
Thank you Rasmus (and Alma Melissa 🙂 ) for sharing this beauty!