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Auchentoshan Three Wood

A Kiss on the Cheek

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@PizaroReview by @Pizaro

9th Jan 2013

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  • Nose
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  • Taste
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  • Finish
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  • Balance
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  • Overall
    80

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Though I have others in my cabinet, this is the first Lowland single malt I’ve opened and tasted - ever - if you don’t count Springbank, which is a riotous lion compared to this untroubling little lamb chop.

Two of the three woods referenced in the name of this unambiguous but piquant libation were sherry (Spanish Oloroso and Pedro Ximenez) and it shows in the deep red-amber color.

The legs are thin, slow and shy.

The nose is surprisingly forceful. Sharp sherry, peanut brittle without the peanuts, diet vanilla wafers, fig squares and maybe a waft of almond dust. And what is that vegetable smell? Fresh cut beets, but they’re far across the room.

The palate is not as airy and fresh as “fresh cut beets” might imply. Rather, it brings a stinging sparkle (should have added water?) and a very slight oily feel. The vanilla wafers have liquefied and the sweetness in not as thin – not as diet – as in the nose, unfolding in a small but determined wave of confectionary sugar that has a slight butterscotch or caramel shading to it. Are there flowers in the room? Perhaps, but, it so, they are far on the other side…

Beyond the slight vanilla-sugar sweetness and the alcohol burn, the finish has little to offer – it is, to my palate, the most disappointing aspect of this otherwise well-dressed and domesticated dram. Or is that lamb?

Or, to put it another way…

Auchentoshan Three Wood is a woman I am glad to have met, but whom I will be calling again only if I’m in need of some information I think she may have, or if I’m a bit lonely and looking for no more than a pleasant companion to walk with me through too-cultivated gardens.

Nothing wild or steamy or dreamy here, but sometimes a kiss on the cheek is very nice.

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2 comments

@markjedi1
markjedi1 commented

Nice review, @Pizaro! But never, ever count Springbank among Lowlands, please. It is a proud Campbeltowner and has nothing to do with Lowland, both nose- or tastewise. It is a completely different profile and hardly delicate like Auchentoshan.

6 years ago 0

@Pizaro
Pizaro commented

@markjedi1 - Thanks for your note. I am aware of the colossal differences between the Lowland and Campbeltown styles. I wouldn't compare Auchentoshan to Springbank anymore than I would compare butterflies to orangutans. But one does often see them clumped together in chapter headings and such. Makes no more sense than including the islands - Jura, Skye and such - in with the Highlands, but it's done all the time. That's what I meant by "if you don't count" in my review - which I now see is a bit confusing on this point. I hope this clears that up.

6 years ago 0

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