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Oban has always been a special whisky for me. I first tasted Oban the night before my wife and I picked up our new chocolate lab puppy (Porter). Now almost three years to the date of the anniversary of Porter’s homecoming I’m now celebrating the homecoming of my first son James (born 6.6.13) on this very special Father’s Day. So in honor of my son and the best dog a man could have, I raise my glass!
This was tasted neat in a Glencairn glass. This bottle appears to have been bottled in 2011 based on the code on the bottle (112842241). The bottle was opened last year on my 35th birthday, so it’s been open for a year and 4 days to be exact. About 3 inches remain in the bottle. Once the bottle got about half way finished I used Private Preserve to maintain its flavor.
Nose: A little peaty, salty (like a warm ocean breeze), light smoke, a little floral.
Taste: Salty, like the residue that’s left on our lips after a surf or a long walk on the beach. Not only is it pleasantly salty, it’s sweet without being cloying. Maybe malty would be a better way of describing it, there is also a hint of vanilla. I do remember the saltiness and the peatiness being more up front when the bottle was first opened. The bottle really aged well after a month or so of being opened; the saltiness and sweetness really balanced out after a little time.
Finish: Rather short, but that’s not a bad thing for this scotch. Again the salt comes into play and it’s rather dry, as you would expect. I think if the finish were much longer the salt would dominate the flavor profile. Overall, I really love the balance between the salty and sweet.
Oban will always be on of my favorite whiskies. The memories, the flavor profile, and what it does to my senses. While I’m truly in love with this whisky, it maybe a while before I restock it. I will always order a dram for those special occasions in life or anytime I’m pining to be near the coast, but for the money there are a lot better whiskies to be had at a reasonable cost. In fact, I’m pretty impressed with the most recent bottle of Bunnahabhain 12 I got. All in all this is a great whisky, while it may be a bit one-dimensional for some of the peat freaks and sherry-heads, you can’t deny its quality. If the price tag were a little lower, I would imagine the ratings would be higher. Also fair warning should be given for those who taste it for the first time from a freshly opened bottle, this is one of those whiskies that gets better with time. Anyway a must try whisky. Here’s to family!