Origin: Highlands (Scotland)
Type: Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Ageing barrels: Ex-Bourbon
Added coloring: Yes
Owner: Inver House Distillers
Average price: € 43.00
Official website: www.oldpulteney.com
Founded in 1826 in honour of Sir William Pulteney, after whom the village in the town of Wick is named, thus recalling his philanthropic activities with money obtained by exploiting slaves in America, Pulteney was for a long time the most northerly distillery in Scotland, accessible only by sea. Its birth was a consequence of the exponential growth of the population in the area, given its favourable location for fishing and the herring trade.
The founding family, the Hendersons, who were already distilling by not exactly legal means, retained ownership until the 1920s and then sold it to John Dewar & Sons.
The collapse of the market in the following decade led to the closure of the business, already in difficulty due to the ban on alcohol in the town, and it reopened in 1951 (four years after the end of the ban) thanks to Robert Cumming, who, however, owned it for a short time, selling it, together with Balblair, to Hiram Walker a few years later.
Other changes of hands took place until the current owner acquired it in 1995, subjecting the distillery to a radical restoration, while respecting its peculiarities.
Old Pulteney’s core portfolio includes four ageing (12, 15, 18 and 25 years) and one NAS, Huddart.
There are several limited editions with significant vintages and travel retail classics, as well as a whisky liqueur called Stroma.
Ripe peaches and apricots come first, marking the predominantly fruity core of the nose, followed by ripe banana, honey, vanilla and a touch of orange. Cereal biscuits and butter blend in the background, along with a pleasant waxy note. Slight metallic lash. Sweet but not cloying.
The warmth of the malt caresses the palate, with an unusual spicy and peppery touch for such a low alcohol content. The coastal soul is revealed in all its savouriness, while the sweet tones remain rather tame in the form of cereal biscuits with bitter orange and peach marmalade, (salty) caramel and a light puff of smoke. Wood in the background and a hint of lemon. Light but far from ethereal.
Medium long finish of salt, oranges, spices, malt, wood.
A classic basic whisky that nevertheless offers personality and depth, certainly not complex or layered but the influence of the distillation area is felt enough not to make it negligible, also offering little surprises.
Reviews of Old Pulteney whisky in the blog:
Càrn Mòr Vertical
The Whiskey Jug