My previous experience with Arran whisky isn’t extensive – I did taste a few Arran whiskies in stores and even SMWS one (which I blogged here and I have heard lots of good things on other indie bottlings) and the quality is very good and improving with time, so when Arran 17 yo went on sale, I picked it and hoped it will be as good as expected.
Bear in mind that Arran distillery is young. It only celebrated 19 year old 1-2 months ago and as such it has a long way to go, catch our eyes and build up their reputation. so every release is important on this road.
Arran 17 Year Old is the second and latest release in a trilogy of releases from Arran distillery. Last year there was the 16 year old, now the 17 year old (which is matured in ex-sherry hogsheads) and in 2015 we can expect the launch of the 18 year old which should be a permanent addition to the official range.
Nose: Starts dry with a bit of oak, then the sherry notes blossoms and hits your nose, it’s very elegant and not overpowering with prunes, raisins and red berries.
Palate: Semi dry on the mouth, then mild sweetness shows up and a big wave of spiciness hits you – starts with oak, nutmeg, cinnamon which turns to cacao and chocolate and ends being peppery.
Finish: Medium long, spicy with bit of oak and lingering sweetness in the background.
Thoughts: Did I really get a bottle of this? Damn, I’m good! Seriously, It’s a good one, balanced and full of sweet spiciness and sherry notes which do not drown the rest of the notes. Worth buying while stock lasts (or just wait till the 18yo release next year!)