Royal Brackla 13, 2006-2020, Sherry Hogshead 20-1301, 51.7% – Valinch & Mallet

I don’t try many Royal Bracklas, for some reason. Even though they seem to be getting a bit more regular from independent bottlers. And then this one recently showed up in the bag of a whisky buddy. Of course, a sample was drawn and I tried it.

Image from Whiskybase

It’s from the ‘Young Masters Editions’ by Valinch & Mallet, but I’m not sure what that means. It does sound luxurious/pretentious, but the proof is in the pudding, in the case of booze like this. Is it worthy of being called a ‘young master’?

Sniff:
Ridiculous amounts of sweet sherry, lots of tropical fruits. Peach, apricot, wood pulp, a bit of wood rot and mulch. Some caramel too.

Sip:
Fierce on the arrival, lots of chili heat with a lot of alcohol. Drying because of it. Sweet oakiness, peaches, plums, dates. Pound cake, some pastry cream.

Swallow:
Lots of fruit on the finish too. Dried fruit, cooked into some kind of fruit mix with sugary caramel.

While this is by no means a bad thing, this whisky is one of these modern sherry casks that have become more prominent over the last couple of years. These casks impart more flavors of sweet fruit syrup instead of the more old fashioned spices and a more gentle fruitiness.

I guess that is also in part by these modern casks often being made from American oak instead of the far more rare European trees.

Having said that, this is a very tasty dram. It’s a bit on the sweet side with all the syrupy fruits, but quite drinkable. Secondary market prices put this at € 129 and I think that’s a bit on the high side.

87/100

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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