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Singlemalting #246 – 6th Edition Scotch Whisky Advent Calendar Day 23 – Glen Spey 21 Year Old

Welcome to day 23 and a trip to Speyside to discover an older expression of Glen Spey from A.D. Rattray. We have had one other Glen Spey as day 1 of our 3rd edition. It was in fact the first ever Secret Spirits bottling in full bottle format and at the legal age of 18 as well. Glen Spey was built in 1828 under the name “Mill of Rothes”. Located in the town of Rothes it is owned by Diageo who use the vast majority of its production for the J&B blends. Glen Spey Distillery has been released sporadically under the fauna and flora range but is most often seen through independent bottlings like this one. Nice that we can occassionally rescue a cask or two from being splashed into J&B rare.

Glen Spey Distillery

A.D. Rattray Glen Spey 21 Year Old Single Malt Scotch Whisky – Speyside – Sherry Butt # 5980 – 59.2%abv

Colour:          Pale gold – Looks like a 2nd or refill sherry butt given the colour after 21 years. Am expecting this to be quite a vibrant whisky for 21 years old.

Nose:             Soft and delicate nose even at just a pinch under 60%. Wildflower honey, creme caramel, Old cathedral pews complete with old hymnals. Book leather, marble and granite. Loads going on here but needs to be coaxed gently and with time. Turns a touch dusty but in an “im an older whisky” kind of way. Could spend a long time just smelling this.

Palate:          Much more of an explosion on the palate than I was expecting. The almost 60% after 21 years is amazing and bursts across the palate with notes of cavendish pipe tobacco, balsamic reduction and cave aged gruyere on fig crackers. Spicy notes take hold with a touch of chili infused dark chocolate.

Finish:           Some lingering citrus rind and boy is that ever warming me all the way down. The savory backbone of this dram is still the overiding flavor for me although some tangerine sweetness peeks up right at the end. The abv holds large all the way and calls out for a splash or two. I am looking forward to seeing what our youtubers do with water in this dram. Tempting to add a little myself but am sticking to what I have been doing so far for this edition and just focussing on it straight out of the bottle.

There is a lot to discover here and I hope you have the patience and time to spend with this lovely 21 year old Single Malt. A contemplative dram if ever there was one. Mystery, discover and delight all in your glass.

You there with your whisky in hand go, watch, like – Youtubers at Single Malt Review in New Zealand. Whisky Whistle in Canada and Scotch Test Dummies in the US. Plus the bonus Food Quig reviews. Cindy and I have been thoroughly entertained by all of these takes on our 6th edition.

On day 23 in the 5th edition we had the A.D. Rattray North British 30 Year Old Single Grain.

Tomorrow being Christmas eve we are going to have something quite special from Wemyss Malts that is one of my favorite whiskies in this edition.

See you on Christmas Eve.



Singlemalting #243 – 6th Edition Scotch Whisky Advent Calendar Day 19 – Dalmore 12 Year Old

Day 19 dawns with an independently bottled (by Secret Spirits) Dalmore 12 Year Old aged in a 1st fill Oloroso cask. So we get to cross off yet another distillery on the list. Still many more to go and some that are going to be neigh unattainable as an indie bottling. Would it be cheating if we just threw a mini of something? Don’t worry that will never happen. Although there are some bottles you can find on the shelf from time to time they are few and far between and always still represent well put together independent bottlings.

Dalmore Distillery

Dalmore has a very interesting history that started way back in 1263 when the chief of Clan Mackenzie saved the King of Scotland from a charging stag. The Dalmore distillery was founded in 1839 and sold 28 years later to Charles Mackenzie who brought with him the Stag crest earned all those generations before. The 12 pointed royal stag has been the emblem on every distillery bottling of Dalmore ever since. For years only the 12 year old was available until 3 different age statements were added to the market. The Secret Spirits single cask will be interesting to compare with the regular Dalmore 12 that is made up of 100’s of casks at a much lower abv.

I have been so looking forward to day 19 and hope this Dalmore delivers some surprises.

Secret Spirits Dalmore 12 Year Old – Highland – Oloroso 1st fill cask # 702099A – 57.2% abv

Colour:          Tarnished copper.

Nose:              Gingerbread house, complete with gum drops and that drizzled icing used to decorate the windows and doors. Every year that I venture to Ontario to spend time with my wifes family there is normally the tradition of making one of those Gingerbread kits. One year we all ante’d up and got a really high end kit with truly amazing gingerbread and top notch decorative accompaniments. This reminds me specifically of that particular gingerbread house. It was rich, slightly soft and super delicious. I might have gained a few pounds that year and eaten most of it over the course of a week. I let this one sit for a while in my Glencairn and am getting some beef Stroganoff with sour cream over al dente penne. Mmmmmm this whisky is just smelling delicious. Righteo lets dive in.

Palate:         The complex and layered meaty element is there along with a spicy sweetness. At 57.2% I feel I want to leave it completely alone and not add any water. A sticky dense balsamic character chimes in and then some chocolate, dark high cocoa chocolate. The Ginger is still there but taking more of a backseat and the spice is turning to sweet.

Finish:          Finishes with poached ripe pears and ginger butter sauce with a citrus twist.

Super delicious. If the regular Dalmore 12 was anything like this I would always have a bottle on my shelf. Alas at 40% the regular offering is a shadowy version of this single cask.

On day 19 in our 5th edition we had an Islay bomb from A.D. Rattray, Williamson (Laphroaig).

You owe it to yourself to always and everyday find yourselves watching our guest Youtubers at Single Malt Review in New Zealand. Whisky Whistle in Canada and Scotch Test Dummies in the US. Plus the bonus Food Quig reviews.

Tomorrow we are taking a ferry to Islay but this time as requested we are bringing the peat and the sherry together.

See you then whisky freaks.



Singlemalting #242 – 6th Edition Scotch Whisky Advent Calendar Day 18 – MacDuff 14 Year Old

Welcome to day 18, the eve of the final full week of dramming adventure. Today we are tasting the second offering from the crew at Claxton’s. Back in Speyside again, we have a Macduff 14 year old. The last time we got to savor MacDuff was in the 5th edition on day 1 from Single Cask Nation.

MacDuff Distillery

MacDuff distillery is more commonly known by the proprietary label Glen Deveron. Founded in 1960 production began in 1963. William Lawson purchased MacDuff in 1972 and eventually sold it to Bacardi in 1993 where it is made an integral part of the John Dewars & Sons operation. This now concludes a trio of Duff related distilleries in our 6th edition. Dufftown, Miltonduff and now MacDuff. Who knew that you really can’t get enough of that wonderful Duff (terrible pun there but Simpsons was a bit of a favorite back in the day).

Claxton’s MacDuff 14 Year Old – Speyside – Sherry Butt # 1835-900032 – 55.9% abv

Colour:          Palest tarnished gold. Even though the guys at Claxton’s gave me the details of the cask as Sherry Butt. They did not specify how many times that barrel had been used and this one looks very much like a 2nd or refill butt.

Nose:          Chocolate coated candy cane, freshly oiled leather, plum pudding sauce. Quite a light nose for a sherry cask again leading me to think that this cask has seen a few fills before this one. I really like a more gentle approach with cask management as I love to see distillery character shining through.

Palate:         Fig newtons, wine gums and prunes. Light sherry influence leading me back to that plum pudding sauce. Grand marnier truffles. Mmmmmm could spend a bit of time on this. Lots to explore here and all quite delicate.

Finish:         Lovely light finish for 55.9% and didnt even ask me for water at all. Citrus notes burst through and leave a bitter chocolate coated orange rind lingering.

Lovely whisky that has a lot of complexities if you are willing to spend plenty of time with it. A very gentle sherry butt that has left a ton of distillery character and allowed for some really nice balance here.

In our 5th edition on this day we had the monster Secret Spirits Glenallachie at a staggering 66.2% what a wow of a dram that was. Still some bottles available.

Please spend some relaxing time with dram in hand watching our guest Youtubers at Single Malt Review in New Zealand. Whisky Whistle in Canada and Scotch Test Dummies in the US. Plus the bonus Food Quig reviews.

Tomorrow we are going back to the Highlands to knock off another distillery making it’s first appearance in any of our editions. Very excited to see how this rarely seen independent bottling goes down.

Until tomorrow have a fabulous evening and quality time with your dram of MacDuff.




Singlemalting #242 – 6th Edition Scotch Whisky Advent Calendar Day 17 – Watermelon Wedge North British 10 Year Old

Today we have the first Single Grain offering in this 6th edition from none other than Wemyss Malts. This particular cask of North British Distillery in Edinburgh is called Watermelon Wedge. At 10 years of age it is comfortable the youngest Single Grain we have botted in any edition. Before today each and every Single Grain has been North of 20 Years old. Will the Watermelon Wedge stand up to the challenge? The last time we saw North British in any edition was a 30 Year Old by A.D. Rattray as part of our 5th Edition.

North British Distillery

North British is a Highland distillery sitting right in the city of Edinburgh. Founded in 1885 it is now jointly owned by Diageo and Edrington under the Lothian Distillers umbrella. Utilizing mostly corn in the mashbill, North British is invariably on the sweeter side of the whisky tasting scale. Watermelon anyone? The bulk of the North British spirit goes into Johnnie Walker and Cutty Sark.

Wemyss Malts Watermelon Wedge North British – Single Grain – Highlands – 46% abv – Bourbon barrel # WVM264.

Colour:        After 10 years there is little colour imparted by this cask, leaning me towards a possible refill.

Nose:        My wife Cindy who always has excellent tasting notes says cinnamon dusted BBQ grilled Pineapple. I know where she is coming from on the pineapple note. I can also see where Wemyss thought of watermelon. Light sweetness for me with buttered corn and fresh grains. Honey glazed corn flakes. After letting it sit for a bit and allowing some of the alcohol to tame I definitely get strawberry sherbet ice cream. Took a bit for the fruity notes to jump out at me.

Palate:       Fruit cup, strawberry sherbet coming out even more now. Perhaps a suggestive hint of slightly over ripe watermelon but for me this is not the dominant flavor at all.

Finish:       Lingering zesty melon rind and buttered corn.

This is quite layered for a younger Single Grain, especially aged in a second or third fill bourbon barrel. This for me would be perfect on the deck in the Summer time or as a Sunday morning breakfast whisky (yep its a thing).

Lovely pick from Wemyss and nice to showcase how cool a younger Single Grain can be. Aging profiles are obviously vastly different but young Bourbon is the norm for American whiskies and yet a 10 year old mostly corn based whisky in Scotland is scoffed at by many as being too young to bottle. The whisky world can be harsh 🙂

On this day in the 5th edition we had the Secret Spirits 10 Year Old Glentauchers.

Today and everyday you need to check out our guest Youtubers to see how they fared at Single Malt Review in New Zealand. Whisky Whistle in Canada and Scotch Test Dummies in the US. Plus the bonus Food Quig reviews.

Tomorrow we have another offering from the boys at Claxtons as we head to Speyside for some more sherried goodness.

Closing in on our last week of drams. It has all flown by so quickly. Making these adventures is like spending hours and hours pouring over the stove and oven to prepare an epic Christmas dinner only to have everyone scarff it down in under an hour. Cindy and I literally spend our entire year preparing, creating and distributing these calendars and poof it’s over in a flash.

See you all tomorrow




Singlemalting #242 – 6th Edition Scotch Whisky Advent Calendar Day 16 – Ardmore 9 Year Old

Hello whisky adventurers. Welcome to day 16 of this 6th edition calendar. Today we have done something very naughty. For those of you doing blind tasting, good luck. This is the first time we have ever had a Highland whisky disguised by aging it in a deep dark and dirty Islay barrel (Laphroaig). Ho ho ho…….. this edition has been so fun to put together I can barely stand it. I sure am looking forward to watching both Food Quig and the boys in New Zealand at Single Malt Review to see just how messed up their blind tastings are. BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA (insert maniacal laughter and evil pose here). Whoops Tim got it 100% right, darn my evil plan was thwarted by the good guys.

Ardmore Distillery

Ardmore Distillery was built in 1898 by William Teacher’s son Adam. The bulk of the spirit went to into the Teacher’s Highland Cream brand and still does today. Now owned by Beam Suntory, Ardmore has been uniquely using barrier filtration rather than chill filtration which I’m sure leaves a little more delicious goodness in every bottle. Located in Kennethmont Aberdeenshire it is seen as a classical Highland distillery that does use a touch of peat.

Not sure who had the plan to pop this lovely Highland Single Malt into a Laphroaig barrel but I sure was happy to have a chance to buy it after 9 years.

Secret Spirits Ardmore 9 Year Old – Highland – Ex Laphroaig Cask # 709328 – 61.3% abv

Colour:         Pale gold. I’m thinking that this ex Laphroaig cask is a refill Bourbon barrel.

Nose:            OK so this initially on the nose talks a lot about the spoon full of sugar that makes the medecine go down. Manuka honey, the good stuff you buy at Planet Organic and pay $ 30 for a small jar. Manuka honey is made from bees using the pollen from Tee Trees and has huge earthy notes (btw Manuka honey makes the best hot toddies ever).

Palate:         Wow yeah that 61.3% abv is awesome and imparts all that lovely peat, earth, honey and what now……. ok I am getting caramelized rose petals…. have I gone crazy….nope wow there is definitely a rose petal floral note in here with caramelized sugars and all the while the manuka honey and earthy notes continue to unfold.

Finish:       long, delicious and calling to me to just keep drinking more and more of this friggin delicious dram. Seriously this is a pretty amazing dram and marries together some very iconic Scottish whisky styles. Love, Love, Love it.

So much scope to play with this whisky at 61.3% and the marriage of Highland honey and medicinal Laphroaig peat is awesome. Wish that more fun experimentations like this happened in Scotland. Certainly companies like Kavalan and Amrut have released many different types of cross barrel aged whiskies. Of course their maturation is so fast they can figure out what works really quickly. Scotland on the other hand is the land of slow. Every year that passes softly nudges the whisky in the direction that the cask wants to take it.

On this day in our 5th edition we had the extremely popular Wemyss Malts Nectar Grove blended malt.

Especially today you need to check out our guest Youtubers at Single Malt Review in New Zealand. Whisky Whistle in Canada and Scotch Test Dummies in the US. Plus the bonus Food Quig reviews.

Tomorrow we have something very special from our friends at Wemyss Malts. Can’t tell you much more or I will give it all away. Suffice to say that tomorrow will be a surprise for everyone.

Closing in on our last full week of whiskies for the 6th edition. I hope you have enjoyed the eclectic selection so far. Even though this has been the most challenging edition Cindy and I have ever made and distributed it has also in many ways been the most fun.

Looking forward to having your company tomorrow.



Singlemalting #241 – 6th Edition Scotch Whisky Advent Calendar Day 15 – Lossit Archivist

G’day whisky pilgrims and welcome to another glorious day to discover new and delicious whisky flavors.

Today we ante up a little on the Lost Distillery company with one from their Archivist range that typically include whiskies that are pushing into and beyond the 20 year old range.

Artists rendition of Lossit Distillery

The Lossit distillery was operating on Islay between 1817 and 1867. You can get a thorough grounding in the history and story of Lossit at the Lost Distillery Website (note that their website is being rehashed right now so you may need to come back and read all the detail of this distillery). We had the Lossit Classic as part of our 4th edition calendar so lets see how much more complex this much older version is.

Lost Distillery Company Lossit Archivist – Islay – 46%abv – no colour and no chill filtration.

Colour:    Very pale gold and makes me lean towards only American oak influence on this one.

Nose:         True to it’s Islay roots there is certainly some brine, earth and damp wood with a touch of fireplace soot. Some fruit here as well, poached Fuji apples.

Palate:        Salt and Vinegar Mrs Vickies chips but with a whole lot more going on. The sooty element is there and is a bit like sitting in an old car and flipping open one of those metal ash trays for passengers in the back seat. A combination of old panelling, ash and carpet but in a good way. Reminds me a bit of driving in my grandfathers car. The Fuji apple peeks through but for me the palate seems more about the darker side of Islay than the fruity side.

Finish:       The 46% holds its own and helps deliver a nice long finish. Touch of zesty acid quality that takes me back to the apple and malt vinegar. Still salty but not overpowering. Would love to sit down and watch a movie while sipping this dram. If I was around when Lossit was distilling I think a nice quiet corner in an Islay pub with a tipple of their Single Malt would have been heavenly.

On this day in our 5th edition we had the Secret Spirits Caol Ila 8 Year Old that came to be known as Smoldering Secrets on our 700ml bottles. There are still just a few of them available.

Don’t forget about our guest Youtubers at Single Malt Review in New Zealand. Whisky Whistle in Canada and Scotch Test Dummies in the US. Plus the bonus Food Quig reviews.

Tomorrow we are heading to the Highlands for another Secret Spirits cask. This one is a real humdinger. Good luck Single Malt Review.

Only 10 days to go now until the Christmas day dram. As always it will be 30 years or older and from a region that we have never had in this coveted spot.

Can hardly wait…




Singlemalting #240 – 6th Edition Scotch Whisky Advent Calendar Day 14 – Miltonduff 10

Welcome to the end of the 2nd week of this 6th edition adventure. Miltonduff has been showcased a number of times in past editions. Once alone as an older Samaroli bottling and a once as part of a particularly amazing Samaroli blended malt.

Built on the site of the meal mill (this building on meal mill sites apparently happened quite a bit) of the Pluscarden Abbey that was build in 1236. It is owned by Pernod Ricard making up much of their Chivas and Ballentines blends. One of those seldom seen Single Malts that requires some independent bottling to do the rescuing. The distillery is built on some of those original foundation stones from 1236.

Miltonduff Distillery

A.D. Rattray Miltonduff 10 Year Old – Speyside – Bourbon Barrel # 701221 – 60.9% abv

Colour:       Very typical of american oak and probably lends itself to a potential 2nd fill Bourbon rather than 1st fill. Pale gold.

Nose:           Miltonduff is such a gentle flavor profile. At least the Samaroli offerings were. This is quite delicate even at over 60%. If you get right in to the Glencairn with the nosing the alcohol can finally jump up and make itself known. Those crisp vanilla wafers with layers of vanilla cream filling. Grab two of those and shove them into a bowl of vanilla bean ice cream that nestles a fresh banana. Put all that together and you have a banana split. Hold the hot fudge because so far its not here…… maybe a slight drizzle of caramel instead.

Palate:         Top your banana split with a marachino cherry. Super creamy mouth filling action with the 60.9%. This is delicious.

Finish:          Warming all the way down. The wafer and vanilla is still there. Touches of citrus rolling in at the death. Didn’t need water for me but would be interesting to see what extra might show itself. Go for it, thats what cask strength is for.

Another delicious example from the Miltonduff distillery.

On this day in the 5th edition we had coincidently another whisky by the A.D. Rattray Independent bottlers – Knockdu 9 Year Old.

Don’t forget about our guest Youtubers at Single Malt Review in New Zealand. Whisky Whistle in Canada and Scotch Test Dummies in the US. Plus the bonus Food Quig reviews.

Tomorrow we are channeling history again with a tier up from the boys at Lost Distillery Company.

Stay tuned for what I believe so far is the most delicious recreation I have tried from them.

Looking forward to many more whiskies yet before we shut the lights off the Christmas tree for another year.

Hope you are enjoying the variety of whiskies so far. How many of you are doing bling tastings? After watching Malt Whisky Review and Food Quig you can see how challenging it is when there is nothing but your nose and taste to guide you.

Have a fabulous evening and until tomorrow keep on dramming.



Singlemalting #237 – 6th Edition Scotch Whisky Advent Calendar Day 11 Dufftown 11 Year Old

Welcome back everyone to day 11 and an accidental revealing of an 11 year old whisky. Sometimes these things just happen. Today we visit yet another distillery that is a first timer for any of our whisky adventures. We had never been able to find a Dufftown bottled by one of the many independent bottlers we have worked with so we just had to do it ourselves.

Dufftown is home to 9 distilleries and raises more revenue per capita than any other town in the UK. The Dufftown distillery itself has been around since 1895 and was founded by two gentlemen from Liverpool. A former meal mill Dufftown started out with only 2 stills. Owned today by powerhouse Diageo Dufftown is most recognizable by it’s proprietary whisky “Singleton”.

Dufftown Distillery

When I initially saw this Dufftown on the list of casks that I could taste from I was pretty excited. You all know I love to cross a distillery off the list but I also love trying rare to find casks from distilleries owned by the big companies.

Secret Spirits – Dufftown 11 Year Old – Speyside – Oloroso Sherry Cask # 700435A – 55.4% abv

Colour:       Burnished Bronze.

Nose:           After yesterday’s Big Peat this is a polar opposite trip North to Speyside. Lovely deep dark forest fruits. The dominant berry for me is blueberry. Like a lovely rich blueberry compote warming on the stove. I could easily have this on pancakes. Does that make this a breakfast whisky? I sure hope so.

Palate:        Big sherry influence here, figs and dates, winter spices, Oloroso sweetness in spades. Funnily enough the Oloroso comes across much dryer than I remember from my tasting in Scotland.

Finish:       Lovely dry finish that continues to put out layers of rich fruit and spice notes. Very mouth coating and at 55.4% pretty balanced. Was tempted to try a touch of water but am enjoying it as is. All of our intrepid Youtubers have been doing a thorough job of adding water and delving deep into the nuance of every whisky so be sure to check them out.

There may be even at 11 years old just a touch more sherry influence on this whisky than some would want to see but is it ever delicious. There is often several schools of thought about how much sherry cask maturation is the right amount. Some want dark inky whisky that is so sherried that there is little else remaining. Others like just a hint to offset the distillery style. As always I tend to be all over the place and can just enjoy the difference inherant in each different whisky I try.

On this day in the 5th edition we had a blended malt both vibrant and aptly named Wemyss Malts Vanilla Burst.

Yep time to check out our guest Youtubers at Single Malt Review in New Zealand. Whisky Whistle in Canada and Scotch Test Dummies in the US. Plus the bonus Food Quig reviews.

Tomorrow we have the sole representative of a particularly popular style of Scotch Whisky that sometimes does not appear in a Scotch Whisky Advent Calendar edition. Looking forward to seeing how it stacks up against what has come before.

So until tomorrow have a fabulous day. As Bart from Scotch Test Dummies is doing pause and contemplate something meaningful that has happened this year each day as we roll through this Advent season.



Singlemalting #234 – 6th Edition Scotch Whisky Advent Calendar Day 8 Benrinnes 10 Year Old

Another day and another single cask from Secret Spirits.

Today for the first time we enjoy a unique cask from the Benrinnes Distillery in Speyside. The first Scotch Whisky I ever sold was the Stronachie 12. The long lost distillery was recreated after an original bottle was procured by A.D. Rattray from 1904. The distillery that they sourced the whisky as the base for the Stronachie brand was Benrinnes. Always a super enjoyable every day dram Stronachie inspired me to seek out more single casks of Benrinnes and see what flavors could be found.

This particular cask of Benrinnes is a 1st fill Oloroso. You may be picking up on a theme here as we managed to get access to a decent range of Oloroso aged whiskies for this edition and after having the vast majority of you screaming for more sherry how could we resist.

Benrinnes Distillery

Benrinnes was founded in 1826 and unfortunately was destroyed by a flood a mere 3 years later. Rebuilt in 1835 under the name Lyne of Ruthrie. Unfortunately it went bankrupt, was sold again, went through a fire in 1896 and was finally refurbished and converted to electricity and sold to John Dewar & Son in 1922.

Thats a lot for a distillery to go through over it’s lifetime. So happy that it made it through all those challenges and we can taste this cask today.

Secret Spirits Benrinnes 10 Year Old – 1st fill Oloroso # 303872 – Speyside – 56.1% abv

Colour:        Another reddish cue to this one but again not as much as you can see from a 1st fill Oloroso cask.

Nose:           Cadbury Fruit and Nut chocolate block complete with the imbedded raisins. Big time memories of being a kid in Australia and having a stick broken off the block to chow down on while watching a movie with the family. This was pretty much one of our staple treats. Along with this sweetness is some of that old leather and dusty library book nose as well. Ladies and gentlemen shall we take a dram and chocolate in the drawing room?

Palate:          Wow really palate spreading flavor. The alcohol seems absolutely spot on at 56.1%. There is a burst of Grand Marnier Liqueur and all the while that lovely nutty, fruity chocolate just keeps coming.

Finish:         Lovely and warming with cocoa nibs, Terry’s chocolate orange and a zippy dry almost tannic finish that leaves everything watering for another sip.

This is the first time I have ever seen Benrinnes in a 1st fill Oloroso and I’m digging it.

On day 8 in the 5th edition we had the 13 year old Balmenach from Old Malt Cask.

Come on now get on over to our guest Youtubers at Single Malt Review in New Zealand. Whisky Whistle in Canada and Scotch Test Dummies in the US.  As a bonus we also have Food Quig following along as well so check them all out.

Tomorrow we are having a break from all this delicious Christmasy sherry and heading to an Island distillery from yet another first time independent bottler joining the ranks of our calendar crew.

So until the morrow drink hearty.



Singlemalting #233 – 6th Edition Scotch Whisky Advent Calendar Day 7 Scallywag

Welcome to the end of the first full week. Cindy and I hope that your whisky adventuring has been fun so far. Today we try something from a very good independent bottler with a long history of exceptional casks and brands. Douglas Laing is a welcome addition to the list of indies that we have featured over the years.

Today much like with Wemyss Malts in the past we are going to explore one of Douglas Laings iconic blended malts, Scallywag.

Including malts from Mortlach, Macallan and Glenrothes, Scallywag is made up entirely of Speyside distilleries. As most of you know I love a good blended malt and we always highlight at least a handful in each edition.

Scallywag Blended Malt from Douglas Laing

Douglas Laing Scallywag Blended Malt Scotch Whisky – 46% abv – Sherry and Bourbon casks – Speyside

Colour:        Rose gold that hints at the sherry casks used in this small batch blended malt.

Nose:            The local tuck shop from my childhood where I would take my hard earned pocket money and buy a mixed bag of lollies (sweets). Musk sticks, fruit jubes, wine gums, and sherbet. Strawberry Chupa Chup.

Palate:        Lovely soft array of sweet fruit and candy begins the journey but allows some earthier elements to climb aboard. A touch of Christmas spice and a bowl of macadamia nuts.

Finish:       A hint of ginger snap spices up the finish. This is just a lovely dram and could happily stay in my glass (with additional pours) for hours.

Yep I love a good blended malt and this is just plain fabulous drinking. Great as an every night dram that won’t break the budget but is a cut above a lot of your usual suspect shelf warmers.

Last edition on day 7 we had another (cough) blended malt (teaspooned cask) from yet another outstanding independent bottler Adelphi. The Breath of Speyside was truly amazing.

I hope you have been heading over to our guest Youtubers at Single Malt Review in New Zealand. Whisky Whistle in Canada and Scotch Test Dummies in the US. I have seen that we also have a few more that are running through our calendar this year including Food Quig who always has a very thoughtful and detailed taste of each and every dram.

Tomorrow we are back to another single cask dram from Secret Spirits from a distillery that I have had a long and delicious relationship with.

Really looking forward to your company as we start off the second week of this our 6th Scottish whisky tour.

Until then sleep tight and dream of whisky.