Still at L’Île Noire Pub. Still drinking. Still having a good time.
Hey, a distillery I have never have! While that could describe many, many distilleries, I’m actually at a loss for this happening often. There’s just so much whisky out there and I like putting those long lists and showing off my whisky review penis out there for the world to see.
But it’s a Speyside. And as is common when I review this many whiskies, in multiple regions, I let my wife choose the Speyside. Which is harder when she’s not there. But then my imagination takes over and the wonderful rainbow snake Coatl picks. Not today though. Not today.
And my wife likes to do it blind, without telling me, and picking a whisky from a distillery I’ve never had, watching me fumble about like when we first started dating. It’s less sexually frustrating, but still fun.
So she picked Pittyvaich 1993 Connoisseurs Choice Gordon & MacPhail, a distillery I couldn’t pronounce if someone pulled out my tongue through my ears and dangled me over a bridge. I couldn’t even if they didn’t do that either, I just was making small talk.
So, who is Pittyvaich? Well they are pretty young, and are the youngest in Speyside. Launched in 1974. For us North Americans, that would make them very old and they’d have to be burned at the stake. In Europe, that’s like saying they were born yesterday.
Pittyvaich was launched as a sister distillery to Dufftown. It’s first single malt was launched as part of the Flora & Fauna line in 1991. And then it closed in 1993. Didn’t help that it was made by Bells to make a generic whisky to be used in their blends. So no one cared and went about their lives.
You see, no one really needed Pittyvaich to make Bells. Bells existed before it, and continued after it. The recipes that blenders used aren’t like Greek Fire, and can be changed with substitutions. So that’s Pittyvaich.
So… uh. Let’s see how this mule tastes, shall we?
Price: N/A at the LCBO
Distillation Date: 1993
Colour: 7.5Y 9/4
Nose: Dragonfruit/fruit punch powder, grapefruit, lemonade, blueberry
Fruit forward. Very fruit forward. Actually only fruit and some sugar. Sweet. Very sweet.
Not bad, just really simple on the nose. It’s really sweet.
Taste: Lemonade, caramel, anise, simple syrup, strawberry, pepper
More sweet. Different levels of sweet. Some more fruit. Pepper, caramel, simple syrup. Rough around the edges.
Honestly this is a clear case of a whisky that tastes like whisky. There’s really no way to get away from it. You have acid, caramel, some spice, and rough elements like sugar and pepper. That’s really it.
Finish: Red jujube, mossy, nutty
And then it ends rather quickly, with memories of the nose and a earthy blanch.
I have to say, while the finish is simple and short, I liked it. It shouldn’t work, but does. Nice to sip.
Conclusion: I’m probably scoring this higher than I should, and I honestly had trouble figuring out the score. It’s a whisky. The nose is quite fruity, and the other parts are just whisky. Not that it’s a bad thing, or a great thing. Honestly I can’t really say.
What I will say is I enjoyed sipping it, and guessing. It’s a nice, simple dram. There’s worse out there. Not really harsh in taste. Otherwise nice. The finish was good and oddly worked.
Scotch review #479, Speyside review #142, Whisky Network review #782
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