Scotch Whisky Advent Calendar 3rd Edition Day 6 Blog #139 – Ainneamh Highland 18 Year Old

Ainneamh (pronounced any-oov) means a rare thing in Gaelic and is an apt name for the independent bottling company owned by Brian Woods and Scott Watson. Releasing only a small number of bottling’s each year means that this whisky geek pair seek out only the most delicious drams. Today we visit the Highlands of Scotland and taste an undisclosed 18 Year Old Single Malt aged in a refill American Oak Hogshead.

I’ve been sworn to secrecy on the distillery but can give you a bit of a clue. The distillery has Two seperate words in the title.

I am a big fan of what most people think of as the “Highland” style of Single Malt. There is of course a lot of blurring of the lines these days but Honey and Heather have been two hallmarks of quintessential Highland Malt.

Ainneamh Highland 18 Year Old

Ainneamh Highland 18 Year Old Single Malt – Aged in a refill American Hogshead barrel bottled at a natural cask strength of 57%

Color:   Another light in color whisky after 18 years in a refill barrel.

Nose:    Lemon drop candies and ripe pear halves. A hint of salty sea air adds a layer to the otherwise fresh and crips nose.

Palate:   A teaspoon of malt powder stirred with some creamed honey. Oak influence is nicely subtle on this allowing even more fruit like ripe honeydew and Starfruit to appear.

Finish:   Long and zesty at 57% and the melon just keeps on coming. Like the ubiquitous side of honeydew and cantaloupe with your Eggs Benedict.

Lovely breakfast dram if ever there was one. I think I might have to put that to the test sometime soon.

Ainneamh does bottle whiskies with declared distilleries as well as undisclosed. Unfortunately this delicious dram was all snapped up to fill the calendar bottles and a few 700ml’s that were sold locally in Scotland. If you are looking for more of this then grabbing another 3rd edition will be your only chance.

Let’s check out what Whiskylassie has to say about today’s dram here.

In the 2nd edition on this day we visited the excellent Highland Distillery, Tullibardine (another coincidence that we had Highland today) from the eyes of The Malt Whisky Company. You can read or re-read it here.

It’s been really fun to be able to bring you some new small independent bottlers to add to the mix and offer up even more variety as we work to keep the 25 new whiskies in each edition interesting and unique.

Tomorrow we head back to Speyside for the first Samaroli in the 3rd edition. Any of you that have read some of my blogs know that I love the Samaroli style of bottling whisky so I can’t wait.

See you tomorrow


Jonathan – Taster of Secrets

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