A long morn is often what I've ended up with after opening a bottle of whisky - either in the good sense of going to bed as the sun comes up, or in the less fair sense of wishing I could go back to bed right now instead of walking around thanks very much.
Fortunately Longmorn itself I associate more with the former, and this 25-year-old from Gordon & MacPhail is no exception. If you're after an amazingly tasty sup, but one that's not going to kick all your teeth in by the time you hear birdsong, pay attention.
As a digression, it must be said that my favourite whiskies are those which are far too easily drinkable - those which are flavoursome, interesting, and sociable, all in one. A lot of whiskies are either good for a quick dram, good for note-taking, or good for newcomers. Nothing wrong with that, but for me it's great to find something which holds the interest for everyone, and lasts the night. As it were.
So it's a celebratively depressing moment when you finally finish the last drop of something that fits this category, as it was with this bottle last night.
The way this Longmorn hangs together is impressive. A rich fruity spiciness threads its way throughout, coming out as christmas cake and brown sugar on the nose, accompanied by fresh wet grass on one hand, and dark wood polish on the other. There's a complex mix of fields, sweets (sherbert?) and the salty sea that tumbles around like choirsong.
On the body, the same notes subtly shift - dry grass, touches of caramel, autumnal apples, cinnamon and mixed spice instead of Christmas Cake... and all offset by a warm sherry and red wine flavour, which manages to hang around after swallowing.
25 years has done a world of good to this. It feels mature, comfortable, but not lazy. Not at all. Rather, this is a whisky that feels like it's seen the world, gained experience, has stories to tell. Rounded, but playful. Wise. I just wish I'd been this wise when I was 25...
Hi all, thanks for the comments and glad you enjoyed :) Wonder if you can still pick up a bottle of this - mine came from Royal Mile Whiskies in London, IIRC.
@AboutChoice: I think currently I'm really liking a lot of the island stuff, as always - Islay and Talisker in particular. I also really want to get more Japanese bottles, as I keep trying this and keep being blown away by them. Maybe they just take me back to the Japanese woods :) But like the Longmorn, there are some really amazing speysides too - something I know less about, but keep discovering. Any suggestions on where to go from this one?
@scribe, though not in the league with your Longmorn, I find Springbank 10 and Ardmore Trad Cask to be very interesting and good for all occasions. Both about 10-15 peats-per-malt, and the Ardmore is one of the rare smoky Speysides.