And so we conclude my latest vacation binge review series at Highlander Pub.
Revere and be grateful for Odin, for within there would be no wisdom, no death, no healing, no glorious battle, no magic, no poems for the skalds to sing, and much more. He strides above his adopted grandson, the 8 legged horse Slepnir. All fierce females of battle are their death.
But why, oh why, do I bother you with Germanic and Norse myth instead of whisky? Well Highland Park created a Valhalla collection, with Odin being the last.
Rather than just call a whisky by a popular culture name and let people go to it on their own, Highland Park decided to aim for the lofty idea of matching the flavour profile to the personality of the mythic god.
Odin himself is seen as the ultimate royalty. Wise, all powerful, far seeing, and accompanied by wolves and ravens.
Sounds a lot like Anglo-Saxon royalty, if you ask me. Granted they’ve replaced wolves with corgis with the current queen. They are kinda like wolves though. Little legged wolves. That are orange.
This whisky was matured in first-fill Sherry cask and refill hogsheads to mimic these ideals of richness and wisdom. Or something.
Let’s just see how it tastes.
Price: N/A at the LCBO
Age: 16 years
Colour: 2.5Y 8/12
Nose: Mango pudding, vanilla milkshake, floral salt, sea air, passionfruit, nectarine, nutmeg, brown sugar
Very tart, stone fruit, and separate sections of thick vanilla and cream.
This is the most Highland Park of the bunch so far. Has the different elements that I’ve come to expect from Highland Park. Salt, tart, and a good mixture of what Scotch should taste like.
Taste: Nectarine, brine, caramel, cinnamon, smoke, dark chocolate, red fruits
Again, very much a Highland Park offering. Good spice, smoke, deep flavours, and red fruit. And by red fruit, I do really mean red fruit. I always notice an acidity in these drams that comes from the Sherry casks, and are quite welcome.
This is on the brink of high complexity. A well made dram, but missing a couple steps from being an amazing dram.
Finish: Orange, brine, malt, cocoa, apple/cider, peat, strawberry
Nice fruit forward finish.Not just a bunch of fruit, either. There’s tartness, sweetness, and a general citric acidity. It’s faint, though long. Not as complex as the taste or even close to the nose.
Conclusion: Like a lot of the Valhalla collection, the main area of impact is the nose. Odin is at its most complex and creamy in the nose, yet the taste and finish diminish as time goes on. And while it’s the Most Highland Park-esque of the bunch, it’s still different enough to shoot out some unique and tasty flavours.
And while I haven’t had all of whiskies from the famed collection, and no wooden boats to show for it, I did enjoy this one more than the others. It was quite tasty. And of all of them I’ve had, I’d probably buy this one.
Scotch review #488, Island review #46, Whisky Network review #792