Craigellachie Dràm Mòr Girvan Distillery Glen Elgin Distillery Glenturret Highlands Region Independent Bottlers Lowland Region Scotland Speyside Region Whisky from 100 to 200 euros Whisky from 50 to 100 euros

Dràm Mòr Christmas 2022

Review of the Christimas release from the Scottish bottler

Type: Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Chillfiltered: No
Additional coloring: No
Owner: Dram Mor Group
Official website: drammorgroup.com

Christmas was a while ago, but since whiskies don’t expire, they can be opened all year round!
The indefatigable bottler in Dumbarton has released four new bottlings for the festive season, three single malts and one single grain, and while waiting for someone to decide to distribute them in Italy, the very kind couple Viktorjia and Kenny sent me samples of their ‘babies’.

Dràm Mòr Girvan 1995 27yo

Origin: Lowlands (Scotland)
Type: Single Grain Scotch Whisky
Strength: 54.8%ABV
Ageing cask: Ex-Bourbon refill
Average price: € 120.00
Vote: 84/100

Twenty-seven years of ageing for this single grain produced by the young distillery Girvan, which I encounter for the second time on this blog and always with a significant age. Hardly this type of whisky has really managed to engage me, but who knows?

Tasting notes

On the nose, the impression of glue and vinyl is present but not very pronounced, diluted in tones of heather, toffee, vanilla, almonds and propolis. Allowing the whisky to breathe, the warm notes gradually become more intense, along with a hint of ginger biscuits and a blur of fondant, although the personality of the grain remains evident.
In the mouth it reinforces its more accepting and warm soul, at least at first glance: black pepper and nutmeg accompany notes of coffee, chocolate, pears, candied pineapple, hazelnuts and a hint of propolis. But this is just the beginning, in a short time the vegetal veins creep in, pushed by the vinyl soul of the distillate, and push the more gentle aspects of the whisky into the background.
The finish is quite short with bitter hints of chocolate, pear, nuts and a slight balsamic note.

The (let’s face it) less than affable personality of the grain contrasts with the gentleness of the cask in a constant conflict, which especially on the palate is almost compelling in perceiving the various nuances and their overlapping over time. In the end, the distillate wins, but not without surrendering much of its own territory.

Reviews of Girvan whisky

Dràm Mòr Glen Elgin 2014 8yo

Origin: Speyside (Scotland)
Type: Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Strength: 56.8%ABV
Ageing cask: Ex-Bourbon first fill
Average price: € 80.00
Vote: 82/100

Those who have been reading me for a while may know my soft spot for Glen Elgin, which I have adored in every independent bottling I have tried: let’s see how this first-fill cask fares, producing 244 bottles.

Tasting notes

Very recognisable nose, with its fresh, fruity notes of green apple, pear, lemon, almond and heather crossed with a mineral and slightly balsamic vein, balancing a base with fatty tones of vanilla, honey, butter brioche, malt and a faint impression of wax. Hint of white pepper. Pleasantly classic.
Crisp on the palate, with a burst of pepper and paprika over bitterish tones in which rhubarb, lemon and a hint of liquorice root drape the sweeter notes, which are also decisively muted by a rather pronounced vegetal vein. Very dry, over time it shows the youthful side of malt and an impression of bread.
Medium long and dry finish, in which the sweet and bitter notes find a compromise, leaving the proscenium to the vegetal ones.

It’s hard to find a bad Glen Elgin, and this is no different. It perhaps lacks a bit of personality and drive, but it’s a more than pleasant dram.

Reviews of Glen Elgin whiskies

Dràm Mòr Craigellachie 2013 9yo

Origin: Speyside (Scotland)
Type: Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Strength: 52.1%ABV
Ageing cask: Finished in ex-Red Wine
Average price: € 80.00
Vote: 84/100

Another distillery much loved by yours truly, at its second bottling after the spring release of 2022 and a year younger. Here we find ourselves with an ageing of unspecified length in a cask that contained Portuguese red wine: scary, uh?

Tasting notes

The nose begins with intense marsala notes that soon open up to sultanas, red fruits (raspberries, currants, gooseberries), crisp apple, shortcrust pastry, trifle. A vaguely sour and alcoholic sweetness, which softens over time (vanilla, caramel) and grows on the fruity side, adding touches of nutmeg and malt. Rather simple and predictable, but pleasant.
The palate unexpectedly turns to coffee (alcoholic, of course), which remains in the background to mark the whole dram, with red fruits and tartness less bright than on the nose, in favour of a bitter streak counterbalanced by sweet notes (apple, malt, hazelnuts, hints of vanilla). Slight vegetal impressions with a hint of toasted wood along the length. Eclectic.
Medium-long finish with nuts, apple, roasted coffee beans, malt and vegetable afflatus.

I admit that upon smelling the glass I had set my expectations a little low, but in the mouth it turns out to be richer and more engaging than expected, with a fun and stimulating layering of flavours. Well done.

Reviews of Craigellachie whisky in the blog

Dràm Mòr Ruadh Mahor 2012 10yo

Origin: Highlands (Scotland)
Type: Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Strength: 57.2%ABV
Ageing cask: Finished in ex-Red Wine first fill
Average price: € 80.00
Vote: 85/100

The Portuguese red wine returns in the ageing process (a first-fill barrique) and also returns a similar bottling already seen in the last release, from a sister cask (this one the 222, the previous one was the 220) that was always ex-Wine but white. 268 bottles were produced, of course cask strength.
It will be interesting to see the difference for this peated whisky from a Highland distillery in disguise.

Tasting notes

The nose is initially very meaty, classically barbecue, which soon slides towards more sweet evocations of candied fruit (apple, pear, cherry), salted caramel and liquorice wheels, veined with balsamic vinegar with flashes of paprika and nutmeg. And let’s not forget the smoke, which is hard to ignore, very thick and vegetal, suspended between wood and burnt herbs. Inviting.
On the palate, it’s still the slightly acidic sweetness that takes full control of the flavours, following the same line with the addition of blood orange, tamarind, prunes and with an extra touch of roughness given by an undertone of leather and liquorice root. Well-integrated smoke that, together with the tingle of spices, makes the dram quite lively.
The finish is quite long and peppery, with smoke sizzling on the tongue along with candied fruit, orange, liquorice, burnt wood and herbal notes.

Quite different from the bottling aged in former white wine but with the same marked personality, perhaps with a slightly more integrated peatiness but we are really talking about nuances (and tastes). Level-headed entertainment.

Reviews of Glenturret whisky

Reviews of Dràm Mòr whisky

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