I’ve heard some rather mixed thoughts on this one. Perhaps ‘mixed’ is the wrong word. None of the watercooler gossip seems to be disparaging, but all of it makes this one out to be rather…mundane, or lacking in personality at the very least.
Hmmm…respectfully, I think I’ll dissent. This is a very, very enjoyable dram.
While seemingly much more restrained than Highland Park’s usual fare, this one still carries that heavy floral honeyed note HP is so famous for. The mild, but omnipresent, smoke and peat that usually permeates Highland Park is, if present at all, merely an afterthought here in this 16 year old. The fruits make me think this one’s pulling the cougar act; telling you she’s one age, but actually maybe a little bit more mature than letting on. That’s ok, though. That sort of dishonesty in age is acceptable in malts and MILFs.
40%, huh? Hmmm…why? Wonder why the team at HP would elect to neuter this one to such a degree when most of their range is 43% and higher. Let’s not get worked up about it. We still like this one. Like a stone that’s spent a healthy amount of time in a rock tumbler; smooth and polished. Aesthetically appealing all around.
Nose: Honey. Cherry. Heather. Pepper. Creamy vanilla and scones. Some light latex. Floral notes. Orange. Notes that seem a little more mature than 16 years, almost as if there may be an older csk or two buried in here. Very smooth and round on the nose.
Palate: Orange again. Pepper. Slightly jammy with honey. Sugar cookies. Maybe some green tea. It’s the oak and fruits that linger.
Very, very pleasant.
– Reviewed by: Curt
– Photo: Curt