Was told to pick up Cutty Sark 25, as it’s on one of my lists. As you can tell from the lack of bolding there, I got that wrong and picked up Cutty Sark Tam o’Shanter 25 instead. Good mistakes to make.
So, you have questions, I have questions, and we all question things.
Cutty Sark Tam o’Shannter 25 is a special edition brought out for Burns Night, 2012. What’s Burns Night? No not a night when you burn things, keep up kid, you’re looks are failing.
Burns Night is celebrated on or around January 25 (depends how drunk you are). It commemorates the life of the bar Robert Burns, who was born on that day. And it beautiful Scots fashion, you celebrate it either formally or informally, with a dram of Scotch, some haggis, and reciting Burns’ poetry. It’s a good time. And haggis, if made right, is heavenly.
So, if it’s for Burns Night, why not call it that? Or Burns Nicht, to do it in Scots. Well Tam o’Shanter is one of the most famous poems by Burns. It’s about staying too late in the pub and having visions.
Which I’m sure most of us have had happen, at least once.
You’ll notice the box is pretty and is decorated, as well as coming with a book of poems. All cool side things, but you’re not here to hear about my take on poems or wood art.
Or at least if you are, you’ve vastly misunderstood what I do here.
So, it’s a special edition that contains at least 25 year whiskies. Sounds cool, let’s see how it tastes (I’m hoping for haggis).
Price: N/A in Ontario
Colour: 7.5YR 3/6
Nose: Cherry, smoke, cranberry sauce, peach juice, cider, brown sugar
Kinda sweet. There’s elements that I’d assume are sherried. Actually based on the sheer amount of sweet notes, I’d say the whole damn thing is sherried and then some.
It’s a light nose on this. Usually blends have a lot more going on. I don’t hate this, it’s just light, especially given the slightly higher Abv.
Not enough haggis too.
Taste: Oak, fennel, orange, ginger, lime
Not surprising that Oak is the first thing you get from a mixture of 25 year or older whiskies. Turns out that those big barrel things have an impact.
Nice amount of spice and fruit here. Quite fruit forward. Nothing harsh either. It’s a nice drinking, or (dare I say it) smooth whisky. I don’t hate any particular part of this.
Nothing too complex here.
Finish: Pepper, strawberry, balsamic vinegar, radish, basil, oak
Like the balsamic elements here. Quite rich and tasty. Good amount of earth as well. Finishes with a little more of a brunt than the taste does, which may surprise people who aimed for a smooth whisky.
I think the finish is the best part of the lot. The sherry elements are popping up and meshing well with the earth.
Conclusion: I don’t hate this. That’s a rough way to start a review. I’m sad there wasn’t any haggis.
Cards on the table though: This whisky was made for a shiny package and a nice thing to put on your mantle. It doesn’t taste rough, and you could probably hand it to anyone and they’d say it was nice.
Is it good, or great, or even okay? Not really. The finish is the best side of things. Beyond that, I’m going to hunt the one I should have bought, because I assume it’s nicer.
Scotch review #429, Blend review #50, Whisky Network review #685