Monday, June 2, 2014

Highland Park 1989, 23 Years Old, Malts of Scotland 53.2%

A short (and thus somewhat limited) review from a 20ml sample bought from
(Also, I'll posit, yet another entry for Worst Ever Bottle Image)

Back in the day, Highland Park 12 was one of the gateway malts that got me properly into whisky. Affordable, reliable and distinctive, it remains one of the malts I'll recommend as a starting point for new, curious whisky drinkers.

Highland Park 1989, 23 Years Old, Malts of Scotland 53.2%

Nose: Quite spirity at first. Then nutty - almond and marzipan mainly - and slightly green and heathery. Lemon appears after some time in the glass, as does a dose of oak and a fairly rich maltiness.

Palate: Intense, piercing grapefruit up front, becoming all chocolate and malt as it hits the back palate and coats the mouth.

Finish: Quite a big finish - lots of booze poking out here, showing every bit of its 53.2% - without being exceptionally long. That grapefruit and chocolate profile continues with little development.

To be honest, I reckon I would have picked this as a Tomintoul or something similar had I been served this blind. There is very little to remind one of this distillery's trademark profile, save perhaps that heathery note on the nose. There's nothing wrong or particularly strange about this of course - sherry casks do a lot of the heavy lifting to complete that profile, I guess - it was just something of a surprise.

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