During Maltstock Jon Beach was pulling all kinds of rarities from his bag. This varied from a 1978 Signatory Vintage Port Ellen, to a blend of the first 9 releases popped in a bottle from That Boutique-y Whisky Company. The other things were also surprises. These were a 1975 Balblair in a ‘The Monaco Blend’ bottle, and a full bottle of Dalmore that, apparently, is a cask sample of a really sherried dram.
I guess he didn’t want to take everything home again since I think I saw the Monaco Blend on the table on Sunday morning, and the Dalmore (of which I asked for a sample) was given to me, as a sample.
Since you don’t come across many Dalmores, from the distillery, at cask strength, he didn’t have to ask twice! I love trying this kind of off-the-beaten path stuff!
There is a lot more sherry in here than the colour made me expect. Apart from the high abv I wouldn’t have been surprised if this was sherry and whisky mixed, instead of just cask maturation. It is lovely though! Lots of raisins but also custard sweetness, vanilla. Quite some oak and the ABV is very present on the nose.
It’s fresh and crisp, but very sweet and very light even. Pepper and other spices, dates, raisins and a soft, gentle oakiness.
Very sweet still, and lingering. The raisins are the main theme of this dram. The custard and vanilla are back too. Now I also get apple crumble and honey.
Now this is a Dalmore I would gladly spend some money on! If the distillery would do releases like this, at a decent price (which in this case would be, I guess, € 90 or so), I’d be a very happy camper and have a lot more respect. Unfortunately, single cask stuff apparently has to go into some collection and fetch at least € 2500 per bottle so chances are slim.
I was very surprised by the sweetness of it all and the amount of sherry in this dram. I generally don’t veer towards whisky that is this heavilly sherried but in this case I kind of loved it. It’s not too complex but just very, very delicious!
Dalmore Cask Sample, 17 years old, 55.74%
Thanks to Jon Beach for the leftover!