Glen Albyn 1975
Loch Ness' mysteries in a bottle
16th Nov 2014
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Tasting Notes by Pandemonium
This is a review of the 35yo Gordon&MacPhail Glen Albyn (1975/2010)
As I stayed in Inverness for a couple of nights this summer, I did a bit of whisky relic hunting. Up to the 80's Inverness could proudly say it had no less than three small distilleries within the city limits. All was fine with the world until the overzealous industry created the infamous whisky lake that swept away two centuries of whisky production in Inverness.
In 1983 both Glen Albyn and Glen Mohr had to close their doors, soon afterwards in 1985 Millburn fell into demise. The Millburn buildings still stands to this day, all my efforts to find a trace of the former distilleries were in vain. Demolished to make place for a mall and superstores. As for their whiskies, I didn't find a single bottle of Inverness whisky in the local pubs. At last I found an affordable sample here in Belgium. (disclaimer: I had a little peek at the whiskyfun notes, there are notes that I agree with, but this no copy-paste review fro Mr. Serge Valentin)
Nose: a soft and amazingly fresh nose for a 35yo. Notes of mandarins and Turkish delights with a touch of mint in the first layer. Some faint floral tones of orange blossom and mineral notes of chalk lay underneath.
Mouth: entirely deviant from the nose. With a waxy body and palate that is just a tad bitter. It mainly comprises elements of spicy oak, pear juice, wood polish and grist.
Finish: long and lingering vanilla with a touch of honey and a whiff of oak.
The Verdict: Well what to make of all this? Whiskyfun describes it as a typical "Inverness" style whisky. Could be, but as this is the first Inverness whisky that I try, I can not comment on that. That being said, it is a fragile whisky with a most unusual profile. I liked the nose, though it was a bit faint. The mouth was interesting but not that appealing. The rich finish put that right again.
I will not go as far as saying that this was one of the best whiskies I've ever had. But it certainly one of the more interesting ones.
Burned out and deep down afraid that you have tasted it all, or just adventurous and looking for something that's above average and out of the ordinary? This mysterious whisky is the one to go to.