Jack Wieber used to be the European agent of many popstars, including Michael Jackson, the King of Pop. Only much later did he turn to whisky. One of his exploits is the series Jack’s Pirate Das Gestohlene Schiff (which translates into ‘The Stolen Ship’), which often contains – but not always! – Islay blended malts. The first one appeared in 2011. In 2018, the 14th through 16th was launched. I will try number 14, which is a bit of the odd one out, as it contains Orkney single malt. Nuff said? No? This is a single cask of Highland Park.
Surprisingly fruity on the nose, with apricots and apple sauce, mandarin and gooseberries. Becomes extra sweet through honey and vanilla. Some menthol. Then some breakfast cereals and wet earth. Just a very little, soft development of smoke. Very nice, actually.
The arrival is very sturdy, mouth coating and piquant. The apple and vanilla return, upholstered with lots of white pepper and bakery spices. The peat is now unmistakable and lets the malt dance on your tongue.
The finish is pretty long, in which the pepper and smoke slowly make room for the soft sweetness, that even turns a bit into wine gums. But it does leave the mouth completely dry.
Great Highland Park indeed. And still to be found for around 80 EUR. Well worth it.