halfway between Aberlour and Grantown-on-Spey. While very popular with the blenders (it is an important ingredient of the Johnnie Walker Green Label for example), it only become well-known with a larger audience with the release of the Classic Malts, albeit only as a 12 years old. In 2014 it made its entrance into the Special Release as a 25 years old. This year we are treated to something special, for this Cragganmore is… peated!
It’s a bit of a scare on the nose at first. Obviously one does not expect peat when nosing Cragganmore. But it carries it well. Initially very sweet – almost candy-like – on apples and pears. Then suddenly heather and peat kick in, giving me the idea that I am sniffing a glass of Ardmore or Ledaig. No, wait! This is more like Talisker. What is all this? But it is both fun and good, so no complaints here.
On the palate, the surprise is even bigger. It is sweet and salty at the same time. Taste this blind and you’ll swear you are sipping Talisker – I kid you not! Again apples, pears, gooseberries and kiwi berries! But no matter how atypical this Cragganmore may be, it is very tasty!
In the long finish I again get some sweetness in the guise of caramel or butterscotch.
Definitely the surprise of the series. Recommended!