|Spirit of Islay
Joined: 28 Aug 2005
Location: Definitely not 55.640489,-6.107687
|Posted: Sun Jun 18, 2006 3:29 pm Post subject: Another Vaults visit
|We had an excellent day and night at the Vaults yesterday , having lunch and trying out a few malts , especially as it was a spur of the moment thing to go and we managed to book a hotel in Leith on the Friday for the Saturday night ( never an easy thing for Edinburgh ) . Most of these are off the early summer list , with a touch of bad timing we found out the next list comes out next Week !
First off with lunch was the first grain bottling by the society G1 ( North British , 16yo , 61.3% ) , I can see why this one flew off the shelves , it’s a stunner , Pale straw in colour , it had a beautiful nose of Vanilla , Cereal and summer meadows . On the palate it was very fresh and clean , again very grassy . It’s finish was long and fruity , pity there was none left as I would have bought a bottle , it was beautifully smooth and went down very well .
The lunch was a good as ever and we went off to book into our hotel knowing we would return at tea time .
First of the evening session went to the Teaninich on the E.S. list (59.35 , 22yo , 55.7% ) , tarnished gold in colour it had a wonderful combination on the nose . Vanilla , (seaside air) saltiness , smoke and loose leaf tobacco . In the palate it was hot and peppery , smoky and slightly peaty . The finish was long and hot . It was a lovely dram , could almost have been an Islay !
I did want to try the 40yo Farclas at this point but it had been drunk into oblivion , so on the recommendation of the bar staff I tried the 18.24 ( Inchgower , 24yo , 54.7% ) , another highly sherried whisky . A lovely polished amber in colour , it was christmas cake with pipe smoke on the nose . It’s taste was the usual dried fruit , peel etc associated with the xmas cake together with tobacco smoke . The finish spoilt it for me , it was long but with a lot of burnt rubber from the sherry cask , altogether a bit too sherried for me .
Next up I wanted to see if they had another Glencraig after the cracking one we’d had on the tasting earlier in the year and they did ! Another 30yo , 104.4 (49.6%) , another stunner , light straw in colour , bags of green fruits (apples, pears ) , vanilla and slight smoke on the nose .
The taste was fairly similar green fruit slight smoke and a touch spiciness , a medium finish but what a fantastic dram .
It was back to the E.S. list for the next dram , a 13yo Bladnoch (50.21 , 59.2% ) , the colour of burnished gold , it had a typical lowland nose mainly of green apples and grass .On the palate it was dry and peppery with a disappointing touch of bitterness and a drop of caramel . The finish was long and fruity , it had a big mouthfeel but did not match up to the recent distillery bottlings .
So it was time to hit the Islays , first stop was Bruichladdich , a 16yo (23.4 , a one from the tastings list which they are currently selling off , Gold in colour with bags of green fruit and vanilla on the nose , with water it went very lemony ( the artifical drizzle cake type) . a typical Laddie on the palate vanilla and creamy fudge , green apples and a touch citric .The finish was very short for a bourbon CS Laddie , a very weak dram compared to other Bruichladdichs , very disappointing , too disappointing to bag a bottle…..
The Penultimate dram was another one from the E.S. list , a 12yo Caol ila (53.99 , 61.2% ) , pale straw and a very medicinal (Germolene) nose . Intensely medicinal on the palate with a load of peat , everything you expect from Caol ila ! A very long and peaty finish with lots of iodine . Very reminiscent of one of my old (Young!) favourites the 53.50 , a little bugger that was half it’s age .
Only one way to end the evening , an Ardbeg , 33.50 (10yo) , another old bottling this was the last dram out of it ! No Disappointments from this one , bright straw in colour , bags of iodine and peat on the nose , a sharp blast of peat and smoke on the palate followed by iodine and a hot and peppery taste . The finish was intense peat , hot and fiery . Lovely ……just where can I get a bottle ?
A pretty good trip away all told , specially as I managed to bag a 1977/21yo RM Brora in Baxters shop in the Ocean Terminal ! I did also toy with the 1977 Glenmorangie they had but it was a bit more than I thought it was worth but never mind ….
Homer's Hypothesis - One can never own too many Ardbegs.......
And a dedicated Islay Forum !!!!