It doesn’t happen often that a single cask Longmorn at cask strength comes along, from a fresh sherry cask, at € 60. In other words, that’s ridiculously cheap to be honest.
It was available from Dutch bottler The Ultimate, ran by the Van Wees in Amersfoort. They’re quite known for the good value their bottlings offer. I fondly remember a 14 year old Glenlivet, a 6 year old Tamdhu and a 43 year old Glenfarclas (crap, I think I gave that secret away. It’s called Mystery Speyside).
This one caused quite a fuss since it’s so good value and the colour is exceptionally nice. The country’s whisky afficionados were thrilled and it sold really quickly. It actually sold so well that in the month or two since, The Ultimate has bottled two sister casks.
I was going to say that I’m not a big fan of sherry casks, but I think that’s wrong. I just thinkg I’m stricter in reviewing sherry casks because I can find more flavours that I don’t like in there. While, with bourbon casks, what you don’t like is usually just a boring cask.
Really heavy on the sherry and oak. Pretty sharp with plums and forest fruit compote. Black berries, raspberries, strawberries. Some toast with cinnamon. They sherry goes in a wine direction and I get hints of red wine and armagnac.
It’s quite strong, but not really sharp. Chocolate and dried strawberries. There’s of course sherry. Some chili pepper and a bit of a syrupy texture.
The finish has a lot of the same characteristics with quite some fruity sherry. It’s long, but not overly thrilling.
This is an exception whisky for € 60. At € 80 or so I wouldn’t have been so thrilled. So what do I find? A very nice and drinkable dram. Exception value for money, but not as much depth as one hopes from a 17 year old sherry cask. Still, I’d be tempted to buy one if I find any of the sister casks. But, since my budget has run out months ago I’m not going looking.
Longmorn 17yo, 1996-2013, cask #72315, 57.5%, Van Wees – The Ultimate. About € 60.
Thanks to Fulco for the sample.