Strangely, there is barely any information on this bottling on the internet. As in, none. I do get some Asian search results, but as you might expect I can’t really work with that.
Anyway, we had this sample as the last one from our Scotch Malt Whisky Society pickings. Rosebank has been a favorite of ours ever since we tried the first one (in our case, the 12 year old Flora & Fauna bottling, back when that was still available).
So, upon seeing this still available, the choice for that one was made. At the time we crossed fingers that it would be still available. As it turned out, the book with the options of the Society’s Share wasn’t 100% up to date.
Also, closed distilleries always have a been of mystery surrounding them. Especially since what you drink will never come back again. There’s just a very finite amount of hooch from brands like Rosebank.
The nose is very light with some hints of straw. Apart from the lightness it’s really strong and sharp with a touch of vanilla. Slightly mineral like with flint and a certain fieriness. Quite thin with lots of alcohol.
The palate is really sharp and dry. Hot even. Really coarse and dehydrating. Some oak and vanilla. Some straw and pepper. Lots of alcohol and bone dry.
Again, alcohol, dryness. Oak, with lots of active spirit. Really sharp.
As you might guess from the notes, I didn’t really enjoy this one. It is far too strong and far too alcoholic for an enthusiastic review. It needs water to be tamed, but even then doesn’t have much flavor. The only reason this could be recommended is if someone wants an alcohol kick and not much else.
There’s not much depth at all, and even with water it doesn’t do much. It seems that even the vast stocks of Rosebank of the SMWS are getting low. They used to have awesome bottlings of this brand, but it’s been quite a while since I tried any of those. The last couple seem less than impressive. Either too spirity or too overpowered by the vanilla from the oak.
Anyway, I didn’t like this one.
Rosebank 1990-2010, 59.3%, SMWS (25.57)