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1998 Royal Lochnagar Distillers Edition Single Malt Scotch Whisky (1000ml)
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- ABV 40%
One of the softest, sweetest malts on the market.
Diageo's 'Distillers Editions' (aka 'DE's) hit the market around 15 years ago, and originally included the six "Classic Malts" (Cragganmore, Dalwhinnie, Glenkinchie, Lagavulin, Oban and Talisker). The range has expanded over the years to offer wood finished versions of Royal Lochangar, Caol Ila and Clynelish (the latter was reportedly dropped in 2012 - so collectors take note!)
These various finishes, usually involving sweet fortifieds (port, muscat, PX sherry etc), tend to soften each distillery's house character, edging some towards the 'dessert' end of the flavour spectrum. While they rarely achieve the highest ratings, across the board, they're interesting, accessible, food friendly whiskies that showcase the impact of each finishing type. The key to success is to avoid overwhelming the malt with secondary flavours, and some achieve this balancing act better than others. We've negotiated a special offer on the 2016 collection for you to explore.
Completely renewed in 1967, Royal Lochnagar today preserves its traditional, iconic character with an approach to whisky manufacture that is thoroughly hands-on and artisanal. Fermentation times are long, ensuring that every last morsel of character is extracted from the mash, and the distillery's short, stubby stills maximise the broad flavour spectrum. The distillery uses a mix of third-fill Sherry butts and third-fill American Oak hogsheads. The result is one of the fruitiest, richest malts on the market. Traditionally nearly all the malt production from Lochnagar was used in the famous VAT 69 blend. Today (thankfully) the majority is bottled as single malt.
This special direct import 1 litre bottling of the 'Distiller's Edition' has been finished in old Muscat casks. Distilled in 1998 and bottled in 2011.
Tasting note: Copper penny colour. Quite honeyed in the opening inhalations with later passes hinting at thickened cream, caramel nib chocolate and later, slightly drier notes of haystack and bitter cocoa. Middle weighted featuring sponge cake, honey and sweet spice flavours plus flashes of juicy grape at mid palate; the muscat input remains indiscernible until the very last rounding off one of the softest, sweetest malts on the market. Pair it with dried fruits and goats cheese. 40% Alc./Vol.