Four years ago I tried the Highland Park 30 Year old for the first time. I must say, it is a ‘happy-to-see-you-again’ moment. Back then I called it the best Highland Park I had tried so far and that still holds true (although the 2012 Amazing Cask from Malts of Scotland came very close).
Yes! That nose! Strike that. That Nose! Creamy and sweet on all kinds of dark and candied fruit – peach, apricots, sultana – with a good dollop of heather honey and a truckload of toffee. Add some brown sugar and beeswax, liquorice and milk chocolate. The whole if finished with some leather. This is simply magnificent and easily entertains you for a full 15 minutes. Delicious.
On the palate it is quasi creamy and immediately pleasantly sweet, but with a trace of salt and a touch of smoke. Mildly drying as well. Quite spicy. The fruit from the nose reappears, but is somewhat overpowered by the spices, unfortunately. Nevertheless, it remains a grand malt, do not worry!
You can easily call this a long finish, with sweet peat and dark fruit at the death.
This truly is a grand Highland Park, but unfortunately the price has become unreachable (to me, at least). I cannot afford 750 to 900 EUR for this bottle (it is not an Auchentoshan after all!).