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Highland Park 18 Year Old

thanks, I'll have another. . . .

0 790

RReview by @Rigmorole

18th Apr 2013


  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

Well, I recently got a bottle of HP18, and I must say that it is as superb as I remember it being over the years.

Here are my tasting notes:

On the nose, I am welcomed by orange blossom, lychee, cedar, and vanilla. The palette does not disappoint, with a full rich mouth feel complimented by sea salt caramel, white chocolate, nutmeg, cinnamon, peppercorn, and baked red apples.

There is also some clover honey that helps to form a bridge into the finish, which is long, and generously sweet, yet also a bit smoky, with echoes of the white chocolate, spices, and macadamia nut.

The final impression is one of anise and chimney smoke co-mingling on an autumn evening after the leaves have just fallen and the ground is fragrant and fertile before the cold weather sets in. Breathe deep. The after effects of the whisky are invigorating through the nostrils, reminding one of the exhilaration of breathing richly oxygenated atmosphere of late autumn on the 45th parallel of the globe (where I happen to live).

Highland Park 18 is a mainstay in my cabinet. I have always taken pride in offering it to my guests (male and female) that have an appreciation for fine whisky. It has a little bit of everything for everyone. Even hardcore peat-heads will not turn up their noses at a glass of this magic!

For me, it is delightful any time of year. Indeed, the Eighteen holds its own with delicately balanced Japanese summery scotches and also the hearty full-bodied Islay scotches. One tip that I can offer in the selection of a bottle is this: look for the lightest color possible inside. Thankfully, the bottle is clear and provides an accurate window into the whisky inside, especially with its flat shape. Hold its broad side up to the light. Sometimes you can come across darker colored batches, which, in my estimation, are not quite as satisfying. When it comes to HP18, lighter is indeed better.

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BlueNote commented

Couldn't agree more @rigmarole. This one should be a mainstay in every serious malt lover's cabinet. Nice review.

10 years ago 0

broddi commented

Interesting. I've only ever bought two bottles of the HP18 and I've loved them. So, what's the difference between the different colors? Is the darker more sherried? sweeter?

10 years ago 0

CaptinTom commented

I have to admit I'm a a slightly confused. Your review of the same whisky dated Feb 7th slated the HP18 and have it 41 points.

This is what you said in your conclusion "I've been ripped off and I'm not afraid to say it. I will NEVER buy another bottle of HP 18 again, ever. This said, I think the 12 year HP is quite reliable. However, I will not buy a bottle of that for many years to come. Highland Park is now on my "do not buy" list for swindling me out of $104 of my hard earned money."

Now you say it's a mainstay.

10 years ago 0

Rigmorole commented

Got a refund from the liquor store on that bad bottle. Had a glass of the HP 18 at a friend's house some time later and it was awesome. Went for it and got another bottle. It's terrific. Not sure if the last one was suffering from cork spoilage or something else. At any rate, I'm back to my happy old self when it comes to HP18. The bad bottle was noticeably darker in color than usual. That's why I mentioned the bit about darkness. Not sure if it was just that one bottle, or if it's more common. At any rate, it could have just been some kind of spoilage.

10 years ago 0

talexander commented

Fantastic review! And I heartily agree!

10 years ago 0

Rigmorole commented

Recently traded my bottle of Pappy Van Winkle's 20 year with a friend for two bottles of HP 18.

If the PVW had been the 15 year, I would not have traded it. I like the 15 much better than the 20 and I don't much care for the 23. It's over-oaked to me. Too woody for my taste.

I hope the two bottles of the 18 are as good as the last bottle I drank. It was lighter in color than the two I recently acquired in my trade.

10 years ago 0

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