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Old Pulteney 12 Year Old

Highland Benchmark

0 788

@SpicyMcHaggisReview by @SpicyMcHaggis

13th Sep 2011

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  • Nose
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  • Taste
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  • Finish
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  • Balance
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  • Overall
    88

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Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

This malt is often described as an ideal beginners whisky, and while true, I think that sells this fine drop somewhat short. For me, this is a true Highland benchmark. It is the perfect combination of land, air and sea (it will make sense when you taste it!)

Colour: Light Gold (does it matter??)

Nose: Definite sherry presence. Barley sugar sweetness and a whiff of salt/brine.

Taste: Sherry again, but muted. It has a sherbet like fizz to it that tingles the tongue. Candied sweetness and a definite salty hint. A wee hint of pepperiness that one would expect from a Highlander, but not too much.

Finish: There's that saltiness again! It doesn't dominate by any stretch, but it's unmissable. There's still that sherry richness, but it fades fairly quickly. Drunk neat, the sensation in the mouth is drying; like sucking on a dry stone. The mouth really waters after finishing this one, which makes you just want more.

Overall, this is a real beauty. Well balanced, with a good mix of richness and maritime character. I am a bit biased as this is one of my favourite malts, so the score is on the generous side, but what the heck, I can't get enough.

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7 comments

@smokeybarrels
smokeybarrels commented

Great review of a wonderful whisky.I think when people say it is a good whisky for beginners, what they are really saying is that it is just a damn good dram that will make you want to learn more about whisky and not put you off. How many of us would be whisky enthusiasts if the very first one we ever tried was an Ardbeg? The number of times I've spent double what this costs on a whisky not half as good I've lost count of!

9 years ago 0

@SpicyMcHaggis
SpicyMcHaggis commented

Thanks for the kind words. I certainly would recommend this whisky to anyone

9 years ago 0

@mattberg
mattberg commented

am looking forward to trying this... and smokeybarrels I'm with you... have spent good money on mediocre offerings... am always checking this site and malt maniacs for good advice now

9 years ago 0

@mattberg
mattberg commented

Have just bought this and had a few drams this weekend..... this is a great whisky in my opinion up there with a Mortlach and Highland Park, if not better than the 12 yo HP... beautifully balanced, sweet,spicey and engaging.... right now I'm rating this 12 yo above or equal to the award winning £80 bottle of 21yo that I bought.....

9 years ago 0

@smokeybarrels
smokeybarrels commented

@mattberg i agree entirely with you on the OP12 vs 21. I spent £70 on it just before Chrimbo and I really don't think it's as enjoyable a dram as the 12 year old expression. I keep trying it hoping to suddenly see the error of my ways but I just think its pretty ordinary. The 12 you can get for a third of the price and for me it's just a much more rounded, more appealing drink. The 17 is again in my opinion a far superior whisky than the 21.

9 years ago 0

@Victor
Victor commented

I too have been a consistent fan and promoter of Old Pulteney 12 since I first tasted it. When I do 25 whisk(e)y tastings, this is the one I always start with.

9 years ago 0

@PMessinger
PMessinger commented

Awesome review @SpicyMcHaggis this is one of the great undercover/stealth mode whiskys. You get so much for the price that it's mind blowing how underated this one is. Great for us OP fans there is more for us. :)

8 years ago 0

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