Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Whisky Discovery #54

Dalmore Cigar Malt NAS (44% abv OB Bottled 2012)
Highland Single Malt Whisky
Circa £65 70cl

Dalmore Cigar Malt Reserve
Dalmore might just be the most legendary distillery in the world when it comes to creating stunning whisky with real provenance. Even the distillery itself looks incredible apparantly, as it overlooks the Cromarthy Firth - an estuary from whose banks rise impressive slopes specked with green thicket and wooded copse.

The classic 12 and 15 year old have long been a mainstay for lovers of rich highland whisky, and the master blender, Richard Patterson, is one of the industry’s best loved celebrities. As well as working at Dalmore, Richard blends for Isle of Jura as well as Whyte and Mackay. Not one to shy from experimentation, he makes use of varying barley strains and age old vintages, which he blends with all the talent of a modern day alchemist.

Dalmore was founded by Alexander Matheson in 1839 and now stands as Whyte and Mackay’s largest distillery as well as being the flagship for the brand. With four pairs of stills, Dalmore has a capacity of 4.2 million litres per annum operates at near capacity, but still retains its quality and character.

The house style is undeniably one of rich, full-bodied whisky, with orange, chocolate and coffee flavours and Dalmore whisky is regularly enjoyed as a post dinner digestif.

The Dalmore Cigar Malt Reserve benefits from a judicious selection of 10 - 15 year old stocks drawn from casks of three types: American white oak ex-bourbon casks, 30 year old Matusalem oloroso sherry casks from Gonazlez Byass and premier cru Cabernet Sauvignon wine barriques.

Bottled at 44% alcohol by volume, the body, structure and character of this extraordinary expression is the perfect complement to a fine cigar

So what did I think?

I'll need to revisit Dalmore again soon as this wee dram at the Whisky Live London Show was not quite enough to get to know it properly as I felt there is a lot more to find in this malt than I managed to note down at the time. I'm not a smoker, but I really enjoyed this, my first taste of Dalmore. With rich red fruits, vanilla and cinnamon on the nose, it really was smooth and delicious on the palate with vanilla ice cream with toffee, marmalade and tropical fruits, the orange zest stayed with me to the end.

(Thanks to Whyte&Mackay for supplying the photograph as I was not organised enough to take my own photos)

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