Thanks to /u/cake_my_day for pouring this dram for me.
So we get back Brora and we get back Port Ellen, yet here I am wanting Littlemill to come back. I’m still holding out hope that someone will read that it was the oldest legal distillery and decide to ramp it back.
Why do I love Lowlands? Because I’m not allowed to eat the flowers around the city after the new bylaw that may or may not been named after me.
Light floral, citrus, and mineral notes are interesting. You don’t get that from other places. You barely get it from the current Lowland whiskies, however also you have a hard time finding them since there’s about 4 currently operating.
Enter in Littlemill 22 1992 Jack Weiber’s, a 22-year-old ex-Bourbon single cask whisky bottled for Whiskyschiff Zurich. I’m in. I’m already sold.
So now that you know my bias, let’s see how I apply it to the whisky, shall we?
Price: € 430.00
Cask type: Bourbon cask
Cask Number: 1902
Number of bottles: 252
Bottled for: Whiskyschiff Zürich 2014
Colour: 7.5Y 8/10
Nose: Sultanas, sunflower oil, yuzu, light caramel, mint
Mind bending amounts of herbal and citrus notes. Very light, good specific flavours that you wouldn’t want to mix with anything else. Water brings out mint and it just works like a proper watermelon salad.
Taste: Beef broth, lemon-lime soda, lemongrass, anise, mineral, licorice hard candy
Umami, herbal, some effervescence, some mineral. I’m a bit sad the acidity has moved in this direction as I wanted a bit more sultana notes, however you get what you get when working with a dead distillery. What am I gonna do, not buy their regular offerings?
Beyond a bit of fruit missing, this is very tasty and I keep going back to it. And when the water brings out more anise? I’m done, give me a tissue.
Finish: Yellow plum, sugar syrup, coconut, lemonade, gingerbread house, menthol
Sweet, tart, dry, and spicy. If I have to lay down some mean “I’m saying this so no one replies to me about how low the score is” comments, the menthol aspect really, really takes over. And as a non-nicotine smoker, I’m not the biggest menthol fan.
Conclusion: Herbal lemon happiness. Pure and simple. Are you going to try this and immediately “get” why people love Lowlands. Counter to how I started this all, I was a tad overzealous in saying that Lowlands “ain’t like they used to be”. There are the odd older Lowland at cask strength that “gets it”.
But those aren’t needed anymore. Having a dram that focuses on very specific flavour profiles that aren’t typical in other whiskies just doesn’t compete with selling a 7-year-old peated whisky that’s gone crazy or a 5-year-old rye that’s hit a similar profile.
But it is nice to have it every-so-often. The acidity, the interesting grassy/floral, and the spice all work wonderfully. It’s not perfect, and as I obtain more Littlemills I don’t expect them to be greater than previous unless somehow I win the lottery.
Try more Lowlands is what I’m saying.
Scotch review #1402, Lowland review #55, Whisky Network review #2079