Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Whisky Discovery #218

anCnoc Peter Arkle 2nd Edition (46% abv OB, 2012, 70cl)
Highland Single Malt
circa £50.00 70cl
anCnoc Single Malt
The new limited edition Peter Arkle Second Edition launched September 2012
Following the first release earlier this year, the anCnoc Distillery unveiled their second expression in a series created in collaboration with a renowned Scottish illustrator based in New York – Peter Arkle. The partnership, launched in April 2012, revolves around a series of limited anCnoc expressions presented in packaging designed by the artist.

The illustration for the Limited Edition No. 2 is a powerful image of rows of casks disappearing into darkness of a warehouse. It was inspired by Peter's visit to Knockdhu where he did much of his creative work for the project and where all anCnoc Single Malt is made and matured. The artist later commented: ‘Working with anCnoc as a collaborative partner on its limited edition campaign has been an incredible thrill, and I am delighted with this new release. My illustration aims to capture the essence of what makes the whisky so special – time, as the sense of time passing was almost tangible inside the warehouse. I hope that drinkers get as much enjoyment from my design as they do from the magic inside the bottle!' 

The whisky has been matured in a fifty/fifty mix of Spanish oak ex-sherry butts and American oak ex-bourbon barrels, both first fill, with a predominant age of eight years, although released with no age statement. Although a limited edition, 12,000 bottles have been released which is double that of the first release. The whisky is bottled at 46% ABV, unchill-filtered and presented at its natural colour.

Official Tasting notes

Colour: Light amber.
Nose: Sweet and full-bodied bursting with spicy vanilla and rich toffee aromas followed by fresh lemons, cooked green apples and a just hint of coconut.
Taste: Sweet, warm and spicy. Dried fruit cake, creamy vanilla and toffee are followed by a distinct note of zesty orange peel and enveloped in leathery richness.

So What did I Think?

With a 50:50 mix of sherry butts and bourbon barrels I was expecting a little more of the sherry influence to come through on the nose. There is bags of vanilla and butterscotch initially, before the fruit first emerges in toffee apples. There's also a little furniture polish, or rich polished wood notes, with some spice and a delicate floral note like orange blossom that drifts in and out as on a breeze wafting through. I left the residue in the glass over night - covered, (a tip I picked up from The Perfect Whisky Match) and re-nosed in the morning; Figs and walnuts! Lovely!

It's sweet on the palate with honey and vanilla but with a good measure of white pepper and a light syrupy texture. I started to get a sweet stewed apples note which reminded me of my Mum's home-made apple pie (we had apple trees in the garden, and around this time of year there always seemed to be stewed apples on the stove!).

The finish was long, ending up quite dry, like finishing a cup of Earl Grey (black of course!) with light spice and a touch of salt at the very end.

A very nice drop of drammage, and certainly compliments the first edition nicely. The bourbon casks are certainly at the forefront of this expression, but the sherried fruits coming through in the end.

Thanks to anCnoc, The Edinburgh Whisky Blog and @alembic_tweets for the sample

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