Tuesday, 12 April 2016

Whisky Discovery #1647

The Golden Age Blend, 40 Year Old (44.3% abv)
Blended Scotch Whisky
£349.95 70cl
Named for the ‘Golden Age’ of distilling spanning the early ’60s to the mid-'70s, The Golden Age Blend has been named Best Blended Scotch at the World Whiskies Awards 2016.

The Blended Whisky Company are the creators of the award-winning Golden Age Blend and The Lost Distilleries Blend, which was named World’s Best Blended Whisky at the World Whiskies Awards 2014, as well as receiving Gold Outstanding and Master medals from the IWSC and Scotch Whisky Masters respectively.

To create this whisky, The Blended Whisky Company took a selection of the finest venerable malts. All the whiskies used are aged for over 40 years and have been distilled at Macallan, Glenrothes and Tamdhu. Next, additional character and ‘seasoning’ was added in the form of gently peated whisky from Bunnahabhain. Finally, an exceptionally well-aged grain whisky from North British was added to tie the other malts together and form the backbone of the blend, at a ratio of approximately four parts malt to just one part grain.

This superbly rich, intense and full bodied award-winning blended whisky stands as a testament to the extraordinary depth of flavour that can be found in some of the marvellous whiskies distilled during the ‘Golden Age’. Just 210 bottles are available worldwide.

The Golden Age Blend is available from all the very best retailers including Amazon and Master of Malt and has a recommended retail price of £349.95

So What Did I Think?
This was the one of my highlights from Whisky Live London, and I had the time to get to know this before the show opened on Saturday as we were working with Maverick Drinks. It was my 'breakfast' dram, or 'product training' as I like to call it. Fortunately, the thoughtful people at Drinks by the Dram also sent me a wee sample as a thank you for helping out on the day and it was my Easter Monday dram. It was wonderful to revisit it and it gave me the opportunity to write some notes.

This has the colour of oiled teak, a colour I'm very familiar with having spent a number of years building yachts that contained a great deal of it.

On the nose, I was reminded of chocolate brioche initially. Fruit followed with raisins, figs, and dried peel, like a Christmas cake steeped in Sherry. There are hints of dark 'old fashioned' marmalade, Demerara sugar, Cigar box and tobacco, and is simply divine. I didn't consider adding water to my sample. Glorious!

The palate opens with a gentle sweetness before the spices rush on to the tongue. As these settle, the sweetness returns, soft and warming while the spices leave a sherbet tingle. Flavours noted included Chelsea Buns, bitter chocolate, coffee grounds, and raisins. Tobacco notes come a little later with just the faintest smoky note developing towards the long finish. Delicious!

The finish is long, with hints of smoke and tobacco, turning woody, with an earthiness of a forest floor, eventually turning dry as the tannins remain at the very end.

I had the pleasure of not only tasting this but, working with The Maverick Drinks stand at Whisky Live London on Saturday, I had the opportunity to share it with appreciative whisky fans, as it was one of our 'under the counter drams'. 

Of course, it's not an affordable whisky for most, but then 40 Year Old whiskies don't tend to be. However, checking prices of other 40-year-old whiskies, this is competitively priced. This is a superbly blended Scotch, and a little piece of history. But don't just take my word for it, it has been named Best Blended Scotch at the World Whiskies Awards 2016.

Huge thanks to Drinks by the Dram for the review sample

Slàinte! Dave