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Thursday, March 2, 2017

Old Pulteney 8 year old 100 Proof Gordon & MacPhail (1970s UK bottling)

Here's one of my mini spoils from my recent trip to the Scot Land.


What else have I to tell you, my friends? It was produced by Gordon & MacPhail in the '70s. It was possibly distilled by Pulteney in the '60s. It was bottled at munition ignition strength. The fill-level was awesome. There was no clash with my hoarder gene; I wanted to drink this the moment I bought it.

Distillery: Old Pulteney
Region: Northern Highlands
Independent Bottler: Gordon & MacPhail
Age: at least 8 years old
Maturation: ???
Bottled: 1970s
Alcohol by Volume: 57%
Chillfiltered? No
Colored? Probably not

NEAT
Its color is medium gold. The nose has remarkable range. Get ready... Leather, peaches, library books, forest floor, musty oak, cardamom and honey. With 20+ minutes in the glass it gets bonus notes of manure and dried cherries. The palate is an assault. Leaves, earth, ink, ash, horseradish, chives(!), a nip of miso and an almost violent medicinal note. Also pencil paint (I chewed many pencils in my time) and plenty of heat. It picks up a wee bit of brown sugar sweetness and tangy lemons with time. The long warm finish keeps the medicinal note, the earthiness, horseradish, pencil paint, lemons and miso.

Ralfy would be proud of this teaspoon of water:

WITH WATER (~43%abv)
The nose keeps the peaches and cardamom, though it gets more coastal/oceany. Lots of honey and toasty oak spices. The palate gets mustier while it scoops up more horseradish. Its bitterness gets aggressive, like an unsweetened herbal liqueur. It keeps some of the ink and miso notes. Picks up cocoa and a floral maltiness. The finish remains warm and extensive even at this strength. It's musty, bitter, salty, inky and malty.

WORDS WORDS WORDS
Incredible. The nose is glorious. It's even welcoming to people who don't like scotch. But the palate is as unsexy as imaginable. I love this stuff, but it won't appeal to all palates. Can't say it's like any other Old Pulteney I've had, nor any recently produced single malt. It hasn't been lovelied up in any way. If you see this whisky selling anywhere, check out the above notes to see if you'd actually enjoy drinking the stuff. I know I would!

Availability - Happy hunting!
Pricing - anywhere from £100 to £400
Rating - 91 (WF gave it a 93)

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