Littlemill 25, Oloroso Sherry cask finish, 50.4% – Private Cellar Edition

A while ago a call was launched on Facebook and Twitter to find people willing to taste and blog about the new Littlemill 25 year old that’s just been released. Obviously, a lot of bloggers reacted and so did I.

It was meant to be a flash blog (like a flash mob) event on Wednesday the 14th of October, and as you can see, this review is two days late. Apparently the mailman did deliver the whisky on Tuesday, but at the neighbors. He didn’t bother to drop a notice so I didn’t know. Anyway, better late than never.

It’s not too remarkable that there were so many people were thrilled to try this dram. Littlemill is been doing very well in the whisky geek community the last five years and the new 25 year old will cost you an arm and a leg. People like trying expensive whisky without paying for it, somehow!

Fun fact. I’ve never bought a Littlemill in my life. I know there are a lot of great casks out there and I’ve been able to try a few of them over the last couple of years. The first I was really thrilled about was the first Archives release from Whiskybase. As far as I see, that was more or less the first indie bottling that scored well and got the ball rolling.

The nose is quite heavy for a Lowlands whisky, but I guess that’s the age and the casks speaking. The rather typical cerael notes, almost porridge like (Bambix) in this case. These notes are surpassed by great smelling oak and lots of light spices. Cheese like at a point, and it builds towards more spicy notes. Strangely, I get notes of haggis!

The palate is pretty strong. Not fierce but strong. More so than expected for a 25 year old whisky. Bread, oatmeal porridge and spices. Again that haggis note. Also pear and almond, Brazil nut and maybe some walnut. Slightly bitter. It’s a very complex dram, this. I suddenly get notes of sweet orange too, with caramel and milk chocolate.

The finish is rich and full. Some oak, but less than on the palate and nose. Strawberry, porridge, dark whole grain bread. Quite old and heavy.

Not to sound disrespectful, but this is a weird whisky. There’s an incredible lot of flavors fighting for attention and that makes it a complex sipper that forces you to pay attention.

It’s quite interesting that all the things people find great about Littlemill nowadays are present in fruit, cereal notes and spices too. But, on the other hand the porridge notes that made people dislike the official Littlemills from years ago are here too. Surprisingly, this works.

It’s a very interesting dram and one with so much complexities that it’s hard to pin down. Every couple of seconds new scents and flavors pop up, which is not something I’ve come across often.

Strangely though, I consider this a whisky that’s ridiculously good and very, very interesting. I also consider this a rather too expensive whisky. Littlemill is popular at the moment, and it’s a closed distillery, but compared to the independent bottlers who are selling 25 year old for some € 200 (or less, if I’m not mistaken), this one comes as rather off balance at € 2700 (that is not a typo).

Still, great, great stuff.

Littlemill 25, Oloroso Sherry cask finish, 50.4%, Private Cellar Edition.

Thanks to Loch Lomond Group and The Whisky Wire for supplying the sample!

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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