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The sales figures and popularity of Old Pulteney have gained a lot in recent years. Their products are marketed as the “genuine maritime malt” and in January 2010, they launched this WK499 (the registration number of the boat) as a tribute to the Isabella Fortuna. The whisky doesn’t have an age statement, but is said to be less than 10 years old and is only available in travel retail.
Nose: fresh and crisp start with vanilla and quite some fruits, mostly apples and pears. Some citrus. A hint of sweet coconut. After a while, the typical Old Pulteney saltiness comes through with notes of wet grains and limestone. Slightly youngish but really attractive.
Mouth: fierce attack on dry grassy notes, salt and lemon. A bit harsh in that respect – like the salty first sip of a margarita cocktail. There’s a malty sweetness but it’s not big enough to find a pleasant balance. Maybe still a hint of vanilla in the background? Hints of peat as well.
Finish: really dry and fairly bitter, with lemon and salt again. Medium long.
This Old Pulteney WK499 took a great start with a characterful nose. Unfortunately it goes a bit downhill after that. The tangy salt and dry, bitterish notes are a little overpowering.