Where there always have been a lot of ‘secret Speyside’ releases over the last decades, there weren’t that many secret Highland version around. This has changed over the last couple of years with more and more distilleries not wanting their brandname on bottles over which they have zero control.
Supposedly, this is a Clynelish, based on my sources. Generally, ‘a Highland Distillery’ is either Clynelish or Glenmorangie, although none of the others can be ruled out. It just generally turns out to be either of these two in almost all cases.
Anyway, a ten year old whisky from a sherry cask. Should be interesting!
A very rich and tropical nose with lots of mango, papaya and dates. There’s honey and a whiff of red chili peppers, and later on a bit of a greasy soot scent.
The palate is consistent with the nose, with a bit more chili heat, though. Syrupy because of the fruit and the honey. Maybe a touch of beeswax?
The finish turns a bit dry, compared to the palate, with a minor note of heather showing up. Dates, and some almonds too.
A drawback to these very sherried whiskies is that it gets very hard to determine whether or not the flavors and aromas match a distillery’s character. So, after having tasted this it could very well be Clynelish, or something else entirely.
Having said that, if you enjoy very sherried whiskies, this is right up your alley. If you prefer to have a bit more distillery character, and originality, this might not be it.