Clynelish 2003, 10yo, Le Trou Normand, 61.4% (26.96) – SMWS

Another day, another Clynelish. Or at least, that’s usually how I wish things went. Unfortunately, it’s been ages since I bought a bottle of Clynelish and even longer since I actually opened one. And that for a dram that comes from “one of my favourite distilleries”. Of course, one of means there are more, and in this case quite a few; Karuizawa, Lagavulin, Springbank, Brora, Rosebank, Buffalo Trace, Wild Turkey, Bowmore, BenRiach, GlenDronach, and if I’d spend a minute more, I’d be able to think of another few. Glen Garioch comes to mind too.

Anyway, this sample came to me as a surprise in a recent package of bottle-share stuff from the SMWS. I, shamefully, have to admit that I don’t remember who sent it and since Gmail is finding too many results I can’t quickly find it there either. Way to go, Sjoerd! You ass…

This is a rather young Clynelish, which is represented in the abnormally high ABV. This bourbon barrel (1st fill) must have been one tight grained baby!

Sniff:
There’s definitely oak on the nose, with some typical Clynelish spices. Some dried fruit too and I thought I got prunes and dates. Some raisins even (it’s a bourbon barrel, but I didn’t know that). There’s vanilla sponge cake with dried apple. Quite some, actually, that vanilla.

Sip:
Sharp, but that’s also, in hindsight, no surprise. Some chili pepper, in a way that’s more flavoursome than hot. Crushed black pepper and vanilla pastry cream. It does build up a little bit to dried fruit again.

Swallow:
Dried herbs and spices and sweet oak. It’s very long and spicy and dry.

When I first sniffed this dram, I thought it would be from a sherry cask. Then I thought it was from an old bourbon barrel. It turns out it is neither and comes from a rather young bourbon barrel. This cask is divine. I wish I had a bottle of it, or better yet, two.

Especially, for a ten year old whisky, there is so much depth and flavour to be discovered. At 61.4% ABV it should also be able to handle water rather well, but my sample didn’t last that long since it was absolutely gorgeous as is. A stunning dram!

Thanks to whoever sent it to me (and again, sorry for not remembering properly)

Clynelish 2003, 10yo, Le Trou Normand, 61.4% (26.96), SMWS. No longer available but used to cost £ 47 (pretty cheap if you ask me, especially for this!).

About Sjoerd de Haan-Kramer

I'm a web developer at Emakina. I'm highly interested in booze, with a focus on whisk(e)y. I like to listen to loads of music and read quite some books. I'm married to Anneke, have a daughter Ot, a son Moos and a cat called Kikker (which means Frog, in Dutch). I live in Krommenie, The Netherlands.
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One Response to Clynelish 2003, 10yo, Le Trou Normand, 61.4% (26.96) – SMWS

  1. Pingback: My favorite whiskies of 2014 | Malt Fascination

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