Pittyvaich was built in 1974 to make malt for the popular Bell’s blend. The distillery was short-lived, however, closing in 1993 after just 19 years of operation. That’s less than the time this malt spent in the cask! There was already a 20 Year Old in the Special Releases in 2009. Now they offer a new one – from the same year 1989 – as a 28 Year Old. For me, this was the biggest surprise of this year’s series!
The nose starts deceptively simple, but there is much to be discovered if you take your time. A bit waxy with white fruit and coconut, but soon some guimauve develops (I love that note in a whisky!), some big fresh minty note shows itself and it gets more depth thanks for some nuts, vanilla and lemon zest. Very soft on the spices. Think ginger, liquorice and vanilla.
It is silky soft and fruity sweet, but with an immediate and unrelenting spiciness. Peppers, ginger and mint. Once the malt has settled on your palate, some delicious sweetness appears from marzipan and apple pastry, sultanas and some grapefruit. A surprisingly salty note appears. How entertaining and lovely.
The finish is medium long, soft and sweet and for a moment makes you doubt if the taste was in fact that spicy, that’s how soft this one dies.
This is only my 4th Pittyvaich (well, there are not that many after all), but by far the most lovely and complex I have had. So much so, that I am considering getting me one of these, despite the price tag of 350 EUR. This is a malt to share with friends on a very special occasion.