Clynelish 18 1997 Archives

Thanks to WhiskyFan2112 for this sample.

We’re continuing on at the tasting. At this point, I’ve taken many water and bread breaks. Perhaps tasted some good, flavourful baked goods and then more palate-cleansing moments.

I’m looking at a Clynelish. Specifically Clynelish 18 1997 Archives. I’m… debating this. It’s an ex-bourbon cask Clynelish. Which some people love, and more power to them. I tend to like my Clynelish sherried as hell and red as my nose on a dry night.

But I’m told I shouldn’t let my bias stop me. So I pour a dram, and here we go. Let’s see how it tastes, shall we?

Price: Sold out

Region: Highland

Vintage: October 29, 1997

Bottled: October 25, 2016

Cask Type: Hogshead

Cask number: 12357

Number of bottles: 223

Abv: 54.3%

Colour: 7.5Y 9/6

Nose: Daisies, lemon, grape, white chocolate, light banana

Hey. This is… nice. It starts out with floral, goes to lemon, some sharp sweetness but not over the top, and even, with time/water, banana. Really nice. Probably the nicest nose I’ve had on an ex-bourbon Clynelish in at least a long time.

Taste: Lemon pie, butterscotch, white chocolate, papaya, pear

Wow, more developed butter/sugar/acid, more of that sharp sweetness, and tropical and stone fruit notes. Again, I keep coming back to it, trying different parts, having good combinations. Think fruity, good truffles.

Sadly there’s something stopping me from the love fest on this one.

Finish: Lemon, grass/anise, caramel, chalk, heat, caramel

The finish is rough. Frankly really, really rough. There’s chalk, heat, sweet, grassy/burn notes, and some acid. It’s grating almost. I sip to enjoy the taste, and then hate myself (more than normal) for the finish.

Water doesn’t help. If anything hurts the whisky finish more.

Conclusion: Wicked amazing nose and taste, and then it has trouble sticking the landing. This should be the whisky that changes one of my biases, and then the finish kicks me in the genitals.

If you aren’t hurt by the finish, this is a no brainer. Heck, I know that Clynelish fans will have probably all grabbed this just due to being a cask strength Clynelish. If you’re like me, then still try it, but it may be one of those times where your biases were right.

All that said, makes me wonder about other Clynelish I have been missing.


Scotch review #1176, Highland review #199, Whisky Network review #1813

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