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Macallan 15 Year Old Alc-Hem-Ist

The Odd One Out

0 082

@markjedi1Review by @markjedi1

22nd May 2011


  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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Alc-Hem-Ist, or simply Alchemist, is the name of an independent bottler, run by Gordon Wright. He learned the trade during a 15 year long career with Springbank, the Campbeltown distillery owned by his family, and a stint at Bruichladdich on Islay after that. He named his label Alchemist in honour to the... err... alchemists from way back when, who stood at the cradle of the art of distilling.

The nose is honey-sweet with lemon grass, lime, orange - in sum: citrussy - followed by a field full of flowers and something chemical, but not unpleasant. A touch of tea as well, which I've never encountered in a Macallan before. And finally a nice touch of smoke.

On the palate, apricots join in with the citrus. Still very sweet, maybe even a bit too much. Honey, sweet malt, marmelade, current and rhubarb. Cloves. A bit smoky. Very complex and completely requireless of water.

The finish lingers and lingers, on oak and malt, and dies in a surprisingly salty note.

Tasting this blind, I would never have recognized it as a Macallan. The smoke and salt, as well as the tea, are aromas and tastes I wouldn't normally associate with this Speyside malt. The Alchemist website is hopelessly outdated, but the whiskies are fine enough. Apart from single malt, Gordon Wright also bottles rum and armagnac.

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