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To celebrate their 100th anniversary in 1995, the Elgin based bottler Gordon & Macphail released a couple of whiskies under the Centenary Reserve label. I have tried the Mortlach 1984, the Caol Ila 1966 and the St Magdalene 1980. As far as I know there is also the Benrinnes 1978, the Glenburgie 1948 (!), the Glenrothes 1978, the Highland Park 1970 and the Mortlach 1985. I have not tried those, though. So how will this Balblair 1973 fare? Judging by the color, it was quite an active sherry cask.
That is confirmed immediately on the nose. Pretty waxy and fruity with sultanas, candied oranges, apricots and grilled pineapple. Cedar wood. Brown banana. Milk chocolate candies filled wiht liqueur. Hints of coffee. Crème au beurre. Pistachio nuts. Wonderful.
The attack is rather weak qua mouth feel, but not qua taste. Honey, oranges, toffee, coffee, some caramel and a pinch of salt. Quite complex. Midpalate, the oak starts to speak, but it all remains quite fruity.
In the medium long and spicy finish, it becomes fairly dry.
I think this would be a stunning whisky at cask strength. What a nose! This will set you back 250 EUR if you still want to get hold of a bottle, though.