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Let me start up front with the fact that my experience with Blair Athol is limited. I tried the regular 12 Year Old Fauna & Flora at the Laichmoray Hotel in Elgin which I found to be lacking. I tried the 20 Year Old from A.D. Rattray for Belgium, which I found very nice. This one too has a high age and great ABV, so I am hoping my third encounter with this Highlander will be enjoyable.
The nose is rather closed and nondescript at first. Some floral and grassy notes that cannot convince me. But give it some time and sweet fruit will pop up. Peach, pineapple and lemon. A few minutes more will reveal honey and something waxy like candlewax. Finally some toffee and muesli. Cinnamon and ginger from the spice rack. Nice development.
The attack if feisty, oily and mouthcoating. Very pepper, now, with a touch of liquorice. Blood oranges and grapefruit from the citrus department, but also some red berries. Pineapple retreats. It does not need water.
The finish is fairly long and warming, with a hint of salt towards the death.
This is a whisky that needs time to breath, but then it opens up nicely. Fairly priced at 72 EUR. Anam na h-Alba incidentally also will be bottling two more Blair Athol that were finished on cognac casks. And early next year, we may expect to see a Linkwood.