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So much whisky, so little time | Singapore | Tasting Notes

Highland Park 1955 Gordon & Macphail ‘Cask’ 52.8% vs Highland Park 1955 Gordon & Macphail ‘Cask’ 54.6%

Highland Park 1955 Gordon & Macphail ‘Cask’ 52.8%

And eternal gratitude to the most generous Whisky person ever!

Somewhat reserved at first nosing, and it has its aromatics but not so in a heavy way, so whiffs of chunky cut orange rind marmalade, touches of stock but also leather and dried up resins. Then a mound of deep earthiness from damp compost, mushrooms and sodden mulch. Blackened hands topping up coal fired stoves in the grimy light of an oily soot encrusted hurricane lamp. Cedar oil. Wet tobacco and smoke from a Kiwi can on fire (parlour trick, ask me about it). Wait, no! The palate is truly exceptional, this is where it explodes with salt, and monumental phenols from a Jurassic peat, the nuances here are legion yet fleeting. Staggeringly magnificent, if somewhat subtle by turns.

 

Highland Park 1955 Gordon & Macphail ‘Cask’ 54.6%

This one is immediately more verbose, with brighter spice from black pepper and cinnamon overtones, but we still get the blacks and purples of blackberry jam, frangipane, old leather jackets, old waxes and brittle wood. A similar phenolic vibe informs the nose with these grimy, sooty and earthy facets particularly spilt lamp oil and charred firewood. Unfortunately it is also somewhat less refined than the 52.8%, and shows more tannins on the palate, where it comes across as having more herbaceous aspects like hibiscus and sage tea, plus camphor, stripped bark and bitter sap. And so those wondrous deep phenols have to contend with an end of show appearance.

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This entry was posted on May 22, 2019 by in Highland Park and tagged .
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