Thanks to /u/boyd86 for bringing this to the end of year tasting.
It’s an odd moment for someone to offer you an Aultmore. And not because it’s similar to a Brora, or Port Ellen, or even a St. Magdalene.
No, it’s an odd moment because frankly it’s not something you see too often.
As such, when we reached Aultmore SMWS 73.64 “Any time can be Xmas” at our end of year tasting, around the Xmas season, I didn’t think much of it. At most I thought “What an appropriate time of year to have this.”
What I didn’t realize was part of the reason I haven’t had many Aultmores is they are owned by Bacardi-Dewar’s and used in their blends.
So somehow this poor butt (teeheehee) ended up sitting around the warehouse, waiting to be mixed in something high end, only to end up being “not quite what the blenders wanted” and sold to SMWS.
And if you’re imagining a movie about that like The Little Toaster, you’re on my wavelength.
Let’s see how this tastes, shall we?
Price: Sold out
Date Distilled: May 1989
Age: 24 years
Cask Type: Refill ex-sherry butt
Colour: 5Y 7/8
Nose: Red licorice, roasted fennel, mint, nutmeg, grape
Initial nose jumps between the fennel and licorice notes, making it very difficult to figure out each one. Given some time, they separate, like what kids do to marriages.
I joke. It’s totally not your fault.
Nice amount of rich fruit here, more spice. It does, in fact, smell like Xmas. Kinda like a fruit gravy that goes with pork. That you have twice, with each of your parents.
Totally not your fault though.
Taste: Lime cheesecake, caramel, grapefruit, orange zest/cardamon
Nice creamy, acidic balance. At first quite sweet, then the acidity balances it out. The spice takes awhile to really pop back up, and some water to really come in.
Even then, the acidity is right against the spice on this one, like you’re new stepmom and dad.
It’s nice he’s happy again.
Finish: Tiramisu, sod, gingersnaps, cardamon coffee, heather
Finish has more earth to it, and a lot of coffee. And since I’m able to drink coffee again, I’m really enjoying the adds. There’s some added creaminess, the spice is back, and even a slight floral/grassy sweetness that you get from heather.
Heather. The woman your mom left your dad for. There were hiccups, but now everyone is happy and get along.
What, it’s an Xmas dram, you thought I’d end on a down note? What kind of monster am I?
Conclusion: It’s filled with fruit, complexity, and tons of spices that you’d enjoy either at Xmas or in November, or, if you’re like me, all year because that’s my jam (I even add it to my jam).
If anything, I think that the complexity is racketed up given the age of this interesting dram. It’s quite interesting that one of the few downsides to it is the lack of the spice on the taste. The lightness there. That and having to wait until the end for coffee.
So regardless of your family makeup, I think all people deserve happiness, and know that eventually they will get there. This dram reminds me of that. It may start with separation and some muddled issues, but in the end, you are happy.
Scotch review #807, Speyside review #233, Whisky Network review #1318