Thursday, June 26, 2014

Brora, 12th Release, 35 Year Old 49.9%

This needs no introduction, I suppose. But anyway...

The most recent release of Brora (at time of writing, obviously) from Diageo's annual Special Releases 2013.
Stupidly expensive (upwards of 750 quid on release), rare (I guess, though I believe the make was around 250 dozen so if you really wanted one and were willing to drop all that cash I'm sure you weren't disappointed), and, perhaps, the apotheosis of the whisky world's bubble and its not always particularly dignified rush to super-premiumisation. Although there can be no accusing this particular 'brand' of jumping on the bandwagon in that regard. Leads from the front.

This was from a wee 20ml sample bought (drunkenly, but je ne regrette rien) from Whiskybase.

Brora, 12th Release, 35 Year Old 49.9% (2013)

Nose: Straight out of the bottle there's smoke and peat, but it's all still rather tight and closed. Needs a little time probably.
After a while there's still smoke and peat, of course, but they're now joined by honey, butter, sweet fruits and hay. The hay becomes more pronounced with further time in the glass. Impeccable balance.

Palate: Sweet fruit up front, evolving into a myriad of flavours as it writhes its way into every corner of the palate. Oily. Peat, salt, honey and smoke. Less explosive than the 5th release, if I remember correctly (says the batch number-dropping expert who's tried all of two). A more nuanced delivery here.

Finish: Honey, spice and citrus. Quite gentle actually, a sensation of wispiness as it trails off into a lovely ashy finish. Again, the balance here is superb. Not a foot wrong.

Fantastic whisky. Its smell and taste is redolent of times long past, yet it remains fresh, vital and, indeed, refreshing. At once powerful and gentle.

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