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Coleburn has been closed since 1985, so this drop is liquid history. The distillery was located very near BenRiach and Longmorn, so this is the heart of Speyside. The name supposedly comes from charcoal burn. I am trying a bottling by Signatory in their Un-Chillfiltered series. It was distilled on 22 October 1981 (I had yet to turn 12!) and bottled on 27 July 2001, just months before 9/11 – to put it a bit in historical context. I am curious as this is my very first Coleburn!
The nose starts rather sweet and in all honesty reminds me of – do not laugh – warm milk with honey, the drink you offer the little one before tucking him in. It also offers some fruit, mostly oranges. Tends towards quinine. Tonic. And a hint of peat. Really? Touch of rubber as well. Anyway, this nose is more than interesting.
It is quite oily on the palate with again the honey, making things very succulent. Immediately the oranges reappear, followed by hints of sultanas. Oh, yes, the peat is clear on the palate as well. It even has a salty lining. Who would have thought. The quinine returns in full battle armor. Not too fruity, but pleasant and spicy nonetheless.
The finish is fairly long, spicy, sour and sweet.
A nice surprise, that is the least you can say about this one.