Cherry Walnut Loaf (SMWS 76.100)

Review 2017-030 «Specifics» Single malt • Vintage 1993 • Bottled in 2012 • 58.1% Alcohol • Matured for 19 years in a refill sherry butt (#76.100) • Non-chill filtered • Natural coloured • Sourced from Mortlach • Bottled by Single Malt Whisky Society (SMWS) • Edinburgh • Scotland • Limited availability (214 bottles) • Not available anymore (price was ±€90) • Whiskybase #95505

STORY. The Single Malt Whisky Society was founded in 1983 to buy and share single cask versions of whisky distilleries from all over Scotland. Nowadays, they also regularly bottle single grain, bourbon, and they occasionally even experiment with single cask versions of other spirits. As a member you get first choice and a reasonable reduction on the price. The peculiar names relate to the impressions of their tasting panel. To prevent distillery-related prejudice, only the distillery codes are mentioned on the label (although some googling reveals the actual distillery).



APPEARANCE. Already classic and stylish design, colour of the contents appear walnut brown and is natural coloured.

NOSE. Salty, meaty, and then some nice fruitiness. There are oloroso sherry spices, cinnamon, and the whole usual bunch of sherry-matured related fruits including plums, figs and raisins. Some tropical fruits are even lurking in the background, in particular overripe mango’s. (water) Now it’s fresh with lots of lemons. All very chiseled, and very surprising too. The sherry goes more to the back. It continues with lemon skin, lime and grapefruits. The tropical fruits return in the distance, and yes, I find lots of walnuts, pastry and probably I can pick a single sherry from somewhere. Great nose!

TASTE. The sherry fruits are in the front and bringing along some salt and citrus fruits. Also here, a nice balance between the fruity, meaty and fresh sides. (water) Fresh and focussed with pastry crust, fresh plums, figs and some cherries. It develops nicely into lemon juice and tequila (!). The finish is surprisingly herbal, with hints of basil, lemon grass and lime skin.

VERDICT. This is a great bottling with a nice complexity and development. The price is very acceptable too for a Mortlach (please do NOT look the prices at the distillery’s original bottlings from late, they could scare you). Recommended (if you know someone who has already fetched a bottle) and I think they changed the recipe of their cake by adding some lemon or lime.

Recommended for the ones that have not tried Mortlach yet (you should).

Many thanks to Henry for the sample!

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