1990 A.D. Rattray 19 yr old Scotch – cask strength! This Highland Single Malt excites with an intense nose that reminds me of a freshly cut cigar, standing on the cliffs overlooking the seaside and braced by a stiff breeze – it almost takes your breath away. (I wish I had found one when I was in Aberystwyth, Wales – that’s the seaside analogy! I did find Jameson18 in my hotel) I’m not certain if this Balblair was aged in Sherry cask, some say Bourbon. Yes, it’s alcohol content is high at cask srength, but the aromas are fine-tuned and decisive. Delicious, spectacular and light bodied, the floral notes hit immediately. It has a slightly sweet, sherry laced flavor w/ a touch of honey and oak, then the mid palette burn ignites w/ a zesty citrus turbo charged kick, shooting towards the back of the tongue where dried fruit, white tea and oak tannins and peppery spices converge and tingle, followed by a long finish that emerges late but invites contemplation and satisfies like no other scotch I’ve had in a long while. Moderately expensive but worth it, usually selling for $75. Magnificent! 98 pts! The only one I remember better than this was a bottle of 1964 Macallan.

Glenmorangie, Nectar d’Or (12 year old). Aged in Bourbon casks and finished w/ Sauternes cask – some say from Chateau D’Yquem itself ?
It has a distinctly golden color, like a young Sauternes. The nose is very pleasant, a bit peppery, spicey, and a touch of sweetness. It has a strong citrusy element up front with a definite vanilla undertone. The taste is noticeably smooth right away, yet unusual for Scotch. There’s a medium burn from the alcohol mixed with honey, lemon and apricot flavors plus a dash of ginger. The Sauternes edge offers a well-rounded compliment to the whisky, a combination of both sweet and dry. The finish is interesting, there is really something different about the use of Sauternes casks in Scotch, to where it’s almost another drink entirely. However, if enjoyed for what it is and not compared to “classic” whisky, it is a thoroughly enjoyable dram you’ll want to come back to. A very nice after dinner drink. Recommended.


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