Blind Tasting Competition 6: Lochside 1991-2008, 46% – Gordon & MacPhail for the Whiskytalker

After this day we’re over a third of the competition in. So far I don’t consider I’m doing badly, although I am quite jealous of other people’s scores. Still, I can wrap my head around this being for fun better than I could last year. Possibly because the fun that’s had on Twitter with these drams.

Lochside 1991

Lochside 1991

Lemon and leather. Lime even, with alcohol, which makes it smell a bit like a cleaning product.

It’d be fun if they put Ballantines Brasil in the competition and just gave everyone a 100 points. Just to screw with us…

I can barely put my nose around the massive lemon and lime notes. Not sure how everybody else is getting honey. I’d say the ABV isn’t too high, some 46% maybe? A touch of wood in the background. After about 20 minutes, I’m getting more and more honey notes. Almost like there’s actual honey in my glass.

After yesterday I don’t really trust my palate on ABV anymore. This has some peppery bite to it at first, but it goes quickly into a more gentle feel. Also, pepper isn’t alcohol but it might mask some of the ETOH in it. The lemon is still present but a tad toned down. Some honey here, and a dusting of cracked black pepper. I might even get some sweet banana in the background after having it swim for a couple of seconds.

The finish is warming with lemon tart, oak and pepper. The lime comes back a bit too.

Not entirely sure of what to think of this and apart from a Creative Whisky Company Aberfeldy I don’t think I’ve had many whiskies this lemony. Although I seem to remember there being more vanilla in that one. The pepper doesn’t indicate much since that is quite the common denominator.

It’s not earthy, peaty or smoky so I’m not going for an Islay dram. Lowlands might be the case with some Auchentoshan in here. The Springwood maybe. That can’t be it because that’s at 40% and the lowest in this year’s BTC is 43%. By sheer numbers I’d have to go for Speyside, but I don’t really have a clue for the distillery.

Going back to the Lowlands as Wemyss’ Tarte au Citron release just popped back into my mind. That might just be it. It fits the 46% note, the lemon one and apart from that it’s completely random. Interesting. I’m going for it.

I kept sipping this whisky while working on our club’s magazine and therefore I let it sit for a while. After about half an hour the honey notes get completely overpowering and it seems to lose all balance. Kind of a bummer since I’m not a fan of honey at all…

It turned out to be a single cask Lochside for The Whisky Talker. If this is the quality of Lochside just before its closure, I don’t find it too odd the owners decided to shut the plant down. After 17 years of maturation this dram is completely out of balance I think. First the lemon and lime overpower everything and half an hour later it’s honey that does the same thing. Barely any flavors are there to balance them out. I’m not a fan. I rated it 80 but consider that too high in hindsight.

Still I got 20 points for the age (40 – 2×10) and 20 for the ABV. I even rose from 5th to 4th spot. Let’s hope I can keep this up and stay in the top 10 for a while. Oh, fun fact, nobody got the distillery right.

Lochside 1991-2008, 46% – Gordon & MacPhail for the Whiskytalker


About Sjoerd de Haan-Kramer

I'm very interested in booze, with a focus on whisky. I like to listen to loads of music and play lots of Magic: the Gathering, and board games too. I'm married to Anneke, have two daughters Ot and Cato, a son Moos and a cat called Kikker (which means Frog, in Dutch). I live in Krommenie, The Netherlands.
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