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Pittyvaich is one of the youngest distilleries in Scotland, built in 1975 by Arthur Bell & Sons. Shortly after it came into possession of UDV. Pittyvaich was a rather modern and high-tech distillery. The spirit goes into UDV-blends primarily. After less than two decades though (in 1993), the distillery was closed and dismantled, meaning it will most likely never reopen.
There are only a handful of official releases, including this Fauna & Flora 12 Year Old. This Pittyvaich has a bad reputation among connoisseurs, it seems, so I had my reservations about this bottle. Unwarranted, it would seem.
The nose is marked by a light smokiness with citrus fruits, roasted almonds, tea and a whiff of toffee, but all these flavours are overwhelmed by a dry (amontillado) sherry. After a while, some fresh hay and herbs surface. Surprisingly complex, although it does smell a tad artificial.
On the palace, it’s again the sherry that plays first violin, accompanied by the almonds. Vanilla from the oak plays in the background. Very sweet and oily. The citrus fruits return as well, nicely spiced. But totally harmless. I would have preferred a little more punch.
The finish is rather long with spicy vanilla and a bitter taste at the death, leaving yoru mouth dry.
I was told by quite a few people that this bottle was no good at all. Some even described it to me as ‘the worst whisky ever’. A severe exaggeration, I think. While absolutely no super whisky, I felt it was nicely balanced and I’ve had (much) worse. I admit purchasing the bottle out of curiosity because the distillery is closed. This whisky is neither spectacular nor essential, but the bad rep was decidedly undeserved.