Whisky Connosr

Arran 21 Year Old Explorer Series 3 Kildonan & Pladda Island


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@markjedi1Review by @markjedi1

30th Sep 2022


Arran 21 Year Old Explorer Series 3 Kildonan & Pladda Island
  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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In 2018, Arran launched the so-called Explorer Series, bottling malts aged 20 to 23 years old and offering them in a fun metal box depicting an interesting spot on Arran. It started with the Brodick Bay in 2018, followed by the Lochranza Castle in 2018, the Kildonan & Pladda Island in 2020 and the Drumadoon Point in 2021. I expect that another one will be released after the summer, but I don't have certainty. Anyway, the third release is now in my glass. It concerns a 21-year-old Arran, a vatting of sherry butts, puncheons and ruby port pipes, which explains the beautiful color. No less than 9,000 bottles were launched at 50.4%. Let's get started!

Very aromatic on honey and caramel, port (doh!) and red berries. Feel free to add some raspberries and blueberries, as well as some sultanas and hazelnuts. The spiciness is not timid at all: cloves, cinnamon, anise and pepper. In the background something of verbena and chamomile and finally a hint of candied orange peels and walnuts. There's a lot going on here. Exciting!

Although I get a lot of herbs and dark sweet fruit that you always associate with maturation in sherry casks, the distillery character here remains intact. I taste Arran, which I think is great. It is even fruitier on the tongue than the nose already promised. I now also get kiwi, litchi, strawberries and orangettes. Delicious. Midpalate it shows a slight touch of perfume and becomes a bit dry, but that absolutely cannot spoil the fun.

The finish is long, sweet and spicy and now suddenly shows the influence of the port. Just think of red fruit, honey and soft tannin. On the deathbed, a bitterness appears as if from a chestnut.

This whisky is a liquid dessert!

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