Gordon & Macphail Distillery Labels Mortlach 25 Year Old Single Malt Scotch Whisky (700ml)
A fantastic price / age ratio. No wonder the importer wanted to buy the lot. Gordon & Macphail have allocated a fraction of the latest outturn to Australia.
Given that Diageo launched a 26 year old Mortlach for AU 2.5K several years back, this gem from Gordon & Macphail is a steal. We've mentioned before that quarter-century aged Scotch is not getting cheaper. Arran, Dalwhinnie, Glenfiddich, Highland Park, Old Pulteney, Laphroaig, Talisker, Caol Ila, Glenrothes and Glengoyne currently have an average retail price of close to $700. Add Macallan, Lagavulin, Springbank and Ardbeg to the mix and the average jumps up to around $1200. It's inevitable that the price for 25 year old single malt Scotch will settle somewhere between these two values. (Even Single Grains and Blends with similar age statements are becoming less and less accessible).
Besides the price point, this is Mortlach: a genuine whisky boffin's whisky and one that's been relatively hard to find. Prior to 2014 when a new official range was released, Mortlach was rarely encountered. Current owners, Diageo, used to offer around 800 cases of a 43% 16 year old annually under their Flora & Fauna label (even this is now discontinued). The next closest thing to "official bottlings" of Mortlach have been the licensed releases by Gordon & Macphail. Otherwise, output is reserved for Diageo's blends. Whisky writer, Dave Broom describes the distillery's main claim to fame (production wise) as "...the home of the most fiendishly complex distillation regime in Scotland". Worm tubs combined with a sophisticated partial-triple distillation and adherence to very traditional practices yields meatier, richer, darker flavours. Always on the heavier end of the Speyside scale, the style is typically masculine, full bodied, sometimes chewy and a little sulphury and often plush with dried fruits. Reportedly bottled from first fill & refill Sherry casks, we note that the colour of this release is much deeper than the previous 43% bottling. Very limited stocks.
Notes from the bottlers... Nose: Rich sherry aromas combine with fruitcake, Autumnal spices and undertones of orange complement Summer berries. A long and lingering finish of almonds. 46% Alc./Vol.