.rutte - jenever - vat 91

On Rutte's website, there is the possibility for professional wine merchants to purchase their own cask of matured jenever. From one of these ex-Bourbon barrels, some samples have been drawn and sent to the "Friends of Rutte" programme-members in order to pre-taste and judge this particular barrel, and send them feedback. As participants of the programme, we received a generous 10cl bottle.

.octomore - 6.3 - islay barley

"For the very first time we are proud to release Octomore whisky distilled from 100% Islay barley and harversted in 2008 by farmer James Brown at Lorgba, a single field on his Octomore farm.

Peated to a stratospheric 258ppm, the highest ever released in the industry, this extraordinary dram embodies its island origins and carries its phenol count with an effortless grace..."

.port charlotte - 2001-2014 - the maltman - #846

We do not see very often that an independent bottler releases a whisky from the Bruichladdich distillery, simply because the distillery hardly ever sells a cask. Every now and then - if you are lucky, you can find a bottle that does not have the official, contemporary label on the bottle, but nevertheless is a distillate from the Progressive Hebridean Distillers that somehow slipped through the nets and found its way into the arms of an independent party that decided to cherish the spirit and bottle it on their own terms, at the right time.

This edition of their heavily peated Port Charlotte has been caressed for the past twelve years by our friends at Meadowside blending who bottled it as one of their own, in their "the Maltman" single cask series.

.glen grant - 1995 - wemyss malts - in a bluebell wood

From Wemyss Malts, a release of a 1995 Glen Grant. I don't know about bluebell forests, but I can imagine the scent would be wonderful.

.linkwood - 1995 - wemyss malts - honeysuckle bower

Another Wemyss special release, the Honeysuckle Bower, although for my palate it might as well have been called Camomile Pot-pourri. Nevertheless, I can find the naming to be correct once again for this "rescued" Linkwood of which most disappears in the Diageo blended whiskies...

.bunnahabhain - 1988-2014 - wemyss malts - kirsch gâteau

Kirsch Gâteau; Black Forest Gâteau, Black Forest cake, Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte, all names for the same cake. Wemyss Malts is known for putting a fitting name on their bottles, and this bottling is no exception to their rule.

.octomore 7.2

"The latest exemplar of the cult that surrounds the world's most heavily peated whisky series. A limited edition Cuvée that marries spirit matured in classic American oak with spirit matured in casks that once held Syrah created in the great vineyards of the Northern Rhône valley."

.port charlotte - islay barley - 2008

"Port Charlotte Islay Barley represents a milestone. For the first time, perhaps in the island history, a heavily peated single malt has been distilled using Islay grown barley. The wind-driven rain that lashes Islay's fields, and the Atlantic air breathed by the casks as they mature by the shores of Loch Indaal, gives the whisky its signature salty, citrus tang." Let's see for ourselves...

.glendronach - 1994 - 20yo - abbey whisky - #3400

Abbey whisky releases several single casks each year, to add to their selection for us to purchase in their store. We were among the lucky ones to receive a sample of this particular series and have a go at this 20 year old GlenDronach, matured in cask #3400, distilled in 1994 and bottled in 2014.

.glendronach - cask strength - batch #3

We have tasted some of the Glendonach Cask Strength whiskies before at festivals, but I never got to it to make a proper tasting note until today.

.aberfeldy - 12yo

If you find yourself near the village of Aberfeldy, in the midst of the highlands in Scotland on your way up to Speyside, make sure you make a stop at the whisky distillery of the same name.

.tullibardine - 1993-2009 - sherry wood finish

A Tullibardine whisky distilled in 1993 and bottled in 2009, finished in an ex-Sherry cask. Nothing more that is to be found on the label or the internet, so just let us see what I found.

.bowmore - wemyss malts - aniseed pastille - 1996-2014

Wemyss malts was very kind to send us some samples to review. Among these samples there was this 1996 Bowmore, bottled in 2014. An 18yo single cask whisky from possibly my least favourite Islay distillery.

.glen garioch - 15yo renaissance

The bottle states "1st Chapter in a Four Part Story", distilled in 1997 - after a short period in which the distillery was closed. Coming three years the distillery will release three more chapters in a similar, limited release by a 16, 17 and 18 year old.