Royal Brackla 18, Palo Cortado Finish, 46%

This whisky was part of De Whiskykoning’s Autumn tasting from last year. In the middle of all the lockdowns there were sample packs instead of physical tastings with a bit of Youtube guidance. Good fun, although a bit less interactive than it would have been in person.

Still, you get to go to a shop and support them a wee bit, and you get some nice whiskies in returns. I like the concept!

Image from Whiskybase

This version of Royal Brackla was finished in Palo Cortado sherry casks and has been on the market since 2020. At 18 years old, and clocking in at about € 115 it’s not too expensive, and it uses a slightly more interesting cask than the regular Oloroso ones. Just to change things up a little bit.

Sniff:
It’s quite old fashioned with lots of barley on the nose, and some oak too. Sand biscuits, vanilla and a bit of black pepper after a minute or two. Pear, mango and apple sauce follow.

Sip:
The palate brings a bit more pepper than the nose did. It’s also slightly more dry. Still quite some vanilla with pear and apple sauce. Oak, slightly acidic not unlike candied lemon slices. A touch of dry sherry with some tropical fruit too.

Swallow:
The finish brings more oak and is slightly more dry than the palate was. Less peppery, though, and more focused on the (still light) notes of sherry. A whiff of orange like bitterness, but also barley and apple cores.

I guess the Palo Cortado finish was a very short one, or they didn’t use first fill casks for it. There is almost no sherry to be found, and the more dominant flavors are still that of good old fashioned bourbon casks.

Having said that, the whisky is nice enough, although it’s not one to rock your world either.

85/100

Available at De Whiskykoning for € 115

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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