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Auchentoshan American Oak

Average score from 5 reviews and 10 ratings 77

Auchentoshan American Oak

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Auchentoshan American Oak

Had this for the second time last night. From a bottle that thankfully isn't mine. It's my brother-in-laws bottle. When I once left a bottle of Springbank 10 at his house when we visited again a few months later, the bottle was all but empty.

This Auchentoshan by contrast has been open since March and is still 3/4 full which speaks volumes!

Anyway not a lot of tasting notes because frankly there wasnt a lot to taste.


A fairly clean nose. A bit of ginger, some oranges and a solventy note.


It tastes thin and young. Vanilla, oranges, a bit of heather and caramel. They need to lay off the e150 with this one as you can actually taste it.


Unpleasant bitter tanins and a fair bit of heat despite it being bottled at 40% abv.

Too young and put together without mych care imo.

This is still a generous score. Aside from the "off" bottle of Glenfarclas 12 I returned, this is without a doubt the worst single malt whisky I've ever tasted. Luckily the bottle wasn't mine. The only tasting notes I had were nailpolish remover on the nose, and wet, mouldy cardboard on the palate and finish. I couldn't finish a glass of this stuff. Horrid. I always say there are no bad whiskies, only some that are better than others. But this whisky is the exception to that rule.

@OdysseusUnbound I did originally give it 65. But thought that was too harsh. But you are probably right. Although judging by your tasting notes your bottle was worse than the one I had a measure from!


This very easy-going single malt from Auchentoshan is aged solely in American Bourbon casks.

I've been drinking this one for a little over two years now and though I enjoy it as a knock off, it certainly won't knock ones socks off. It is a little too inconspicuous in the single malt landscape, lacking the complexity that raises and even the affordable scotches into the memory.

Nose- Light caramel notes, mild toasty quality. Palate- Delicate vanilla and caramel. These tones are a particular highlight for me. They also constitute the main character of the scotch. Finish- Light sweetness, biscuit, caramel.

My only disappointment with this is the lack of complexity. But this is also what makes it my go-to at the end of the night.

@MadSingleMalt I've only ever had the standard 12 and was incredibly unimpressed. All the reviews for the American Oak and the Three Wood seem to be just as lukewarm. I find Auchentoshan to be the Brendan Fraser of scotches. Bland and unremarkable. Not bad, just easily forgettable. Perhaps their eleventy billion dollar bottles are worthwhile, but I'll never know.

@nicko, don't forget that if you order your drink "straight up" you will get it poured over ice and strained.


I had tasted this somewhere a few years ago (likely at a whisky show) and wasn't that crazy about it - but a few weeks ago I purchased it on a whim. Let's see if my opinion about it has changed...

The colour is a light gold. Classic bourbon cask notes on the nose, with coconut, vanilla, toffee, honey and toasted oak. Underripe peach. Light creme brûlée underneath. Water brings out more of the cask - but also a bitterness. Pleasant enough but a bit too young and spirity.

Silky smooth on the palate with toasted pecans, more coconut, a hint of citrus and the standard caramel/vanilla combo. Slight hint of spice - and a bit of Big League Chew! Still, too bland to really work for me, and water doesn't help much.

The finish is very short and nondescript: a bit of oak, light toffee and meringue. I'm extremely hit-and-miss on Auchentoshan, and this bottling is a good example of why. For me, the bourbon cask notes combined with the young, triple-distilled spirit just strike me as bland - if I swished out a cask would it taste much different?? Anyway, on the website it has a few cocktails, one of which is the "Glasgow Mule" (Auchentoshan American Oak, lime and ginger beer). I made one, and all I can taste is the ginger beer. Which is not a bad thing.

I just noticed that I reviewed this already, in November 2015, at which time I gave it a slightly higher score of 79. Funny, I always do a Google search for my reviews on Connosr, but that one did not come up. Oh well! Guess I'm getting more and more particular as I get older!

Granted I only have 20% of the reviews you do, but can't always remember which I reviewed (though I try to keep a record now). I find the Connosr search engine very helpful.


This newer expression is fully matured in first-fill bourbon barrels. Of course, like all Auchenstoshan, this is triple distilled. The bottle has been open for some months now.

The colour is a medium gold. A little spirity on the nose, but pleasant, with grainy malt, honey, toffee, vanilla, mint and green apple. Extremely fruity, actually - throw in some tropical fruits and citrus as well and you have a pretty big basket! Rather floral. Mintier with water. Nice but a little bland in that Auchentoshan way.

On the palate the toffee and vanilla are fighting with the fruit - quite a bit of honey as well. More citrus comes out, with some spices as well. Creamier mouthfeel with water. Tastes fine but doesn't quite gel together somehow.

The finish is a very herbal and a little bitter - not great. This seems to me to be a little too young, and hence rather unbalanced - fruit fights with toffee/vanilla fights with a young spirit. I'm always hit and miss with Auchentoshan (I tend to like the cask-strength ones) and this one is a near miss for me. I poured it for my office a few months ago though, and they all quite liked it, so if you are a fan of the 12 or Three Wood, this might be for you.

"Nice but a little bland in that Auchentoshan way." kind of sums up a lot of people's attitudes toward Auchentoshan, I would say.

Where does that bitterness on the finish come from, I wonder? Would more time in the barrels generate as many problems in this case as it would solve? If the bitterness is coming from the oak then further aging would mellow the spirit, but probably also increase the bitterness. That bitter finish sounds like it derives from a not so good selection of barrels.

Probably - or it could be a combination of poor barrel and very young spirit.


The American Oak is the successor of the Classic, which is the entry level malt that even I am not very fond of. The big difference with the Classic is not so much the age (for there is no age statement on this bottle either), but the fact that only first fill bourbon casks were used for this American Oak. It is a creation from Rachel Barrie, the Master Blender whom I will meet in a couple of weeks.

The nose is fresh and sweet. Freshly cut grass, apple juice from Golden Delicious, lemon peel, pecan nuts and soft oak. A lot more creamy than the Classic and hence more interesting. Frangipane cake, coconut and vanilla. A very pleasant surprise.

The arrival is rather soft, but very flavorsome. Light and fruity with apples and citrus (somewhat zesty now). Mildly drying. Becomes warmer with the second sip.

It is not a very long finish, but it remains nicely fruity.

Clearly a young animal (I suspect around 6 years), but quite an improvement over the Classic and a great introduction to the new, modern Auchentoshan. Around 35 EUR, which is a steal. With a big thanks to Jen at Auchentoshan for the sample.

This is something that might just change my views about the Auchentoshan distillery.

Will pick up a bottle later today.

@FMichael, did you pick up a bottle and if so, have you tried it? What are your impressions?

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