Dec 022014
 

Secret Spirits Advent Calendar Day 2 – December 2nd122

2007 Aultmore 7 y.o. (A.D. Rattray)

Cask #900015 Sherry Cask

50% abv

Score:  84.5/100

 

A whisky from the Secret Spirits Advent Calendar First Edition. 

First Aultmore reviewed for the site.  Again…another distillery that isn’t often represented in the single malt spheres.  Most of the spirit from this Speyside distillery ends up buried deep in the Dewar’s blends, for better or worse.

It’s an oft-quoted number, but apparently about 90% of whisky produced in Scotland ends up being bottled and sold as blends.  Obviously then it would become imperative for blenders to have vast quantities of component malts (and grains) at their disposal.  The result – unfortunately for us malt snobs – is a bunch of distilleries from which we get a disproportionately small sample set of whiskies to taste.  It’s also incredibly difficult to be able to speak to a distillery’s profile and thumb print characteristics with any sort of authority.

This exact problem is the case with Aultmore.  Nearly 3 million litres produced annually and sweet f*ck all for bottlings on the shelves.  Oh well.  I guess we just need to appreciate them a little more when the opportunities present themselves.

So…not having a lot in the way of points of comparison, let’s simply dive into the glass: a malt that surprises with the enormity of its sherry influence.

Nose:  Wow.  Hefty young sherry.  Chocolate and thick fudgy/toffee notes.  Cinnamon and toasted oak.  Ginger snap cookies.  Spice cake or muffins.  Toasted rye bread.  Mince pies.  Suisse Mocha flavoured coffee powder and dark vanilla.

Palate:  Spicy as all hell.  And different than any other malt I’ve met.  Deeper on meaty and leathery notes than the big fruits I’d expect from young sherry bombs.  Manzanilla perhaps?  Dunno.  Think old school Mortlach meets Aberlour a’bunadh.  Still getting some fruit notes though, but they’re more like very dry fruitcake and orange zest.  An odd spice note I simply can’t place.

Thoughts:  I love the fact that this is an ‘in your face’ age-stated 7 year old.  Exactly what I’ve been wanting to see whisky makers do.  Nothing wrong with being young and proud…so long as it’s good.  And yes…this is.  Very odd.  But good.

Bonus:  My mate, Jonathan, and I are gonna blog on these drams side by side through the season.  Here’s a link to his notes on the same whisky at SingleMalting.com.

 

– Reviewed by:  Curt

– Photo:  Curt

 Posted by at 8:55 am