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Scotch Whisky Advent Calendar 3rd Edition Day 15 Blog #150 – Malt Whisky Company MacDuff 16 Year Old

Back in the drivers seat today is Stuart Nickerson from Malt Whisky Company with a bit of a favorite distillery for me. I have had some really good MacDuff whisky over the years and one single cask in particular from A.D. Rattray always stands out for me. Knowing how good Stuart is at picking great casks I have been anticipating this for quite a while.

MacDuff is a Highland Distillery that was originally known as Glen Deveron. You can still find whisky bottled under this name but mostly older casks as even independent bottlers have embraced MacDuff. It was founded in 1962 and is now owned by Bacardi who used the bulk of its Single Malt Whisky for their blends like Dewar’s.

MacDuff Distillery

It seems to me that a lot of the independent bottler’s that I work with are finding the merits of using good quality refill casks to allow all of the delicious distillery character to shine through. Today’s whisky is no exception with Stuart choosing a refill cask for this 16 year old MacDuff.

Malt Whisky Company MacDuff 16 Year Old aged in a Refill American Oak Hogshead # 500720 and bottled at the cask strength of 54.9%. No shenanigans involved like caramel coloring or chill filtration here.


MacDuff 16

Color:   Another extremely light whisky which is the norm for refill casks especially American oak. After 16 years however it is a touch darker than the other refill casks we have seen so far. A nice light wedding ring gold.

Nose:    Hot buttered rum tropical notes. Pineapple and papaya over vanilla bean sorbet.

Palate:   Crunchy fresh breakfast waffle with hints of chunky pineapple and strong Seville orange marmalade sauce dusted with white chocolate flakes. This should be a thing…

Finish:  The orange marmalade comes through more strongly than the hint of tropical once we get to the finish. Very fresh and mouth watering. 54.7% is warming and long with just the right amount of bitter orange rind to bring the marmalade note to a delicious conclusion.

Yummo Stuart I know that you guys in the UK love your marmalade but sprinkling in some tropics as well is just crazy. Enough of this frilly Highland nonsense I hear some of you peat inclined saying. Well just because I love you too we will be heading to Islay tomorrow for a dram from those beloved Italians Samaroli.

We can see just how much Johanne loves this MacDuff at whiskylassie.

For those of you that enjoyed this MacDuff, I have good news. We will be getting a very small amount and it will be available for those that act quickly. Please email me at jonathan@secretspirits.com for details. (Late breaking news as I was just informed that inexplicably the cask in question was empty when they went to fill the remnant – authorities are looking into this heinous crime).

On this day in the second edition we had the A.D. Rattray Invergordon Single Grain that you can read about here.

I hope you have enjoyed the variety so far as we head into the last 10 days of the calendar which as some of you know is perhaps the best part of the whole experience counting down to Christmas day and hopefully getting more and more family time and fun in along the way.

I look forward to our Islay encounter tomorrow


Jonathan – taster of secrets

Advent Day 15 – Samaroli 2009 MacDuff (Glen Deveron) 5 Year Old Single Malt | Blog #47

Welcome to a new working week.

I hope that your Monday was full of adventure and proved to be an invigorated return to doing something that you are passionate about.

Today we discover MacDuff. Built in 1959 it was sold as Glen Deveron named after the Deveron river that it sits beside. After it’s sale to Bacardi in 1998 the Glen Deveron branding was dropped and the Single Malt given the name of the Distillery, Macduff.  Interesting to note that Glen Deveron was bottled as a 10 year old and a 5 year old for export.

It is used mostly for the Dewar’s blends although tends to pop up regularly as independent bottling’s.

Whisky: Samaroli Macduff 2009 5 Year Old Single Malt
*Cask # 900258 American Oak – 45% alcohol non-chill filtered*

MacDuff 5yo MacDuff 5yo

Colour: This is by far the lightest of all the whiskies in the calendar this year and looks like a nice glass of fresh water with just the fainest splash of lemon juice
Nose: Grassy meadow with a freshness like walking through a paddock after heavy rain. Sweet barley and biscuits.
Palate: Surprisingly full and round, some medicinal character and faint whiffs of peat show through. A touch of salty seaweed underlines it all. Reminds me of a nice slice of fresh sushi with its creamy rice and crispy seaweed wrap.
Finish: Lingering briny peat and just a touch of smoke.

Water: Brings out some soft fruit to intermingle with the flavors of the seaside.

**Curt from All Things Whisky has also been “Tasting” along with the calendar. Check out his notes HERE.

This is a really unique whisky and shows how much character can be developed at such a young age even in Scotland. Those that love salty lightly peated drams will be all over this one.

Only 30 bottles available from the following great retailers:


Sherbrooke Liquor Store

Spruce Grove

Liquor on McLeod




Ingredients Artisan Market

It is great to see bottler’s like Samaroli that will completely be upfront with younger casks that are delicious.

See you tomorrow …


Samaroli Bottlers Website