Here’s a fiery little number from the Old Fettercairn Distillery. What the hell is with the color on this one? Wow. I don’t think I’ve ever seen such a vibrant shade of orange/amber in a whisky before.
Apparently ‘Fior’ means something along the lines of ‘pure’ or ‘true’ in Gaelic, but based on color and linguistic similarity, my first guess would have been something more like a Latin noun for something along the lines of ‘fire’.
Alright…now that I’ve expounded on my linguistic ignorance, let’s move on to the Fior.
There is a sweetness here that borders on liqueur. Big bold orange notes meet a sweet smokiness and tangy sherry before splashing headline into pools of caramel and melted Swiss chocolate. There is a pronounced floral side to this as well that almost reaches the point of ‘perfumed’. Finally, a big over-arching citric note that adds a sort of electric zing to the experience.
Chinese spice and slightly plummy now on the palate. Wine now. Something with a bit of spice and pepper to it, like a Shiraz (lacking the flavors of a shiraz, to be sure…I’m speaking more to the characteristics of tannins and spice). Dry plum skins. Hmmm…odd one. When this was first given to me, I spoke with the fine chap who passed it over to me and asked if he had noticed an odd textural quality to it. I said it seemed almost gritty, like it had a very fine particulate in it. He said, in not so many words, that I was off my f’n rocker (he’s actually far too much of a gent to say that, but either way…did not see what I was speaking of). I did notice though that our mate, Serge, over at Whiskyfun has referred to it as chalky. Maybe we’re on the same page?
Anyway…neither spectacular nor one to avoid. I kinda had fun with the Fior. Decent entry level malt.
– Reviewed by: Curt
– Photo: Curt