2003 Craigellachie 16YO “Old Particular” K&L Exclusive Single Sherry Butt Cask Strength Speyside ~ Scotch Whisky News

2003 Craigellachie 16 Year Old “Old Particular” K&L Exclusive Single Sherry Butt Cask Strength Speyside Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml) ($109.99)

One of the most distinctive malts in all of Scotland. Craigellachie utilizes worm tubs with a very low copper content that, in combination with very long fermentation times, contributes to a rare and desirable sulfurous trait in whisky (not to be confused with the strong and undesirable sulfurous notes occasionally found in older sherry butts that were treated to prevent spoilage). The end result is a pungent aroma that when young is often described as meaty or like boiled cabbage, but when matured works its way into complex sweet fragrances such as pineapple and other tropical fruits and floral notes. These beautiful flavors offer aromatics in combination with palate weight and make Craigellachie a prized malt for blenders and single malt enthusiasts alike. When in combination with sherried wood, there is nothing else like it. The tropical flavors mingle with the nuttiness of the sherry to make a whisky unmatched in flavor, weight, and aromatics. These rare casks typically command astronomical prices, but as always, thanks to our long standing direct relationships in Scotland, we’ve been able to secure a cask or two that offer unparalleled value in the single malt category.

David Othenin-Girard | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: December 09, 2020

We’re obviously into Craigellachie, we just can’t say no to these great casks. This one is the perfect contrast to the excellent, although much more restrained, 14 year bottled under the “Behind the Highlander” label. Here 16 years in a first fill sherry have resulted in the expected loveliness. The color is tawny. A perfect nose of roasted nuts, wisps of bitter herbs (thujon, gentian), stewed fruit and spice. This opens to old exotic wood, vanilla bean, fresh light arabica and brown sugar. It takes water, but I think is best with just a drop. This one reminds me of a more integrated version of the Glendronach 11 year that we sold quickly earlier this year. Lots to love here.

Jeffrey Jones | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: December 04, 2020

This one is a winner for sherry cask influenced single malts fans. The nose is rich and complex but also delicate and inviting. In the mouth it is soft and fruity with wonderful sweet notes and a creamy mouth feel. There is a lovely honey and dried fruit finish. I tasted this single malt with a splash of water.

Andrew Whiteley | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: December 02, 2020

Oh Lordy. Unmistakably Craigellachie. This cask is a doozy. It’s charged from a sherry butt yielding just 562 bottles and what a cask it must have been. It’s not the darkest whisky in the world, but it’s dark enough and carries textbook perfect sherry notes. First off the nose – it’s Cragellachie all the way. That meaty, rich, fragrant and hulking spirit is assertive. But any of the acrid sulfur nature you sometimes get with a low copper contact spirit is long gone. It’s really showing off the fruity side. Dark blackberries and ripe raspberries mingle with the sweet syrupy nature of the sherry. Toffee and hard candy and yogurt covered raisins abound. The palate is surprisingly lifted – it’s rich and flavorful without being excessively heavy. The finish hints at a creamy nature and leaves your mouth coated in chocolate dipped raisins and nuts. It’s a very special whisky from a very special distillery.

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