In exactly one week, Whisky Love Tel-Aviv 2018 will be in full swing. I’ll be there and I hope my Israeli readers will visit this great exhibition too. But what is an exhibition without a commemorative bottle? Of course there’s one but Tomer Goren, the man behind the event decided to bottle a special whisky for Whisky Live and what a special whisky it is: a 37 Years Old Port Ellen.
Yup, this is no mistake. We have a Port Ellen bottling for the Whisky Live show. It was distilled in 1979 and bottled in 2017 after it spent 37 years in a refill Sherry Hogshead that yielded 241 bottles at 44.8%.
For such a pedigree, the price is very very reasonable especially when comparing to other independent bottlers Port Ellens out there. Shall we check it out?
Port Ellen 1979 37 Years Old (For Whisky Live Tel-Aviv 2018) (44.8%, 3000NIS/€700)
Nose: Aged gentle wet peat. Very farmy at first but after a while it’s morphed to earthy peat kind. Sweet red fruits in the background with fresh strawberries and raspberries. Hay and dried grass, moss, hints of apricots and honey. After a while there’s nuttiness and it becomes smoky like a smell of an empty chimney. Continue reading
Last review was from a not-so-heralded distillery from Diageo portfolio, yet the Caol Ila 25 is a good and affordable dram. But today we go to the other side of the pendulum, going for a rare and expensive whisky from one of the two iconic distilleries in their portfolio: Port Ellen.
This one was a big surprise. Last summer I toured UK/Scotland and on the way north I passed through Tyndrum , the small village where The Green Welly Stop whisky shop resides. Ever heard of them? Awesome shop with solid web presence where you can buy them in a matter of few clicks. I’ve been chatting with Craig, the guy behind their web presence for a long time and was sorry to hear he wasn’t around that evening I passed through. Still, he prepared me a surprise goodies bag and this little Port Ellen bottle was in there. Oh how was I surprised!
I don’t need to tell you the story about Port Ellen distillery, right? Way too many articles, ink and pixels were devoted to that but sufficient to say that nobody could forecast the rise of Port Ellen to iconic status back in the 80s (post closure) or in the 90s and any Port Ellen bottle on the market is snapped up by drinkers and collectors although lately it must be more of the latter type as the prices are on a high rise and the latest official bottling of Port Ellen is on sell for 2,200 quid.
As you don’t get too many chances to try such rare and expensive whiskies nowadays, and the the liquid level was generous, I felt compelled to share this luscious whisky with others so this is exactly what I did and so three people enjoyed this lovely dram.
As one of the other benefactors is another whisky blogger, today we present you the readers a cross-blog review of this lovely dram! You can read Michael’s review at Malt and Oak blog and my notes right here and
Port Ellen 1983 Golden Cask (52.5%, 27 Year Old)
Nose: oh boy, you just can’t hate that old, wet and dumpy peat on the nose. Especially when it comes with old Oloroso sherry. there’s some oak tannins here, raisins and a mix of sour and sweet plums. Overall its very gentle yet powerful and with old library dusty feeling which I could sniff for hours. Continue reading
Feis Ile 2014 has ended.
In the last week I’ve went through almost all the distilleries (except Lagavulin as I didn’t have any new Lagavulin dram to review). But before we go back to normal posting, let’s have one last review to close out the series, a tribute and a salute to the iconic islay distillery which isn’t with us anymore – Port Ellen.
This one is an indie bottling from 2007 for the Old Malt Cask brand of Douglas Laing (Now at the hands of Hunter Laing), one of 594 bottles from a sherry butt. Here are the tasting notes:
Port Ellen 1982 25 year old Old Malt Cask (50%)