After more than two years I was finally able to make a trip to Scotland again and it was fantastic! How I missed it so much! But that also means that I have some distillery exclusives to review and so today the first: a Dalwhinnie 12 year old.

And speaking of distillery exclusives, I’m happy to see that Diageo has now replaced the standard exclusives (large editions and all bottled at 48%) for a bottle your own version. I always thought those old standard bottlings were okay, but certainly not special. The nice thing that Diageo now also offers this, is that you can also taste brands such as Dalwhinnie outside the standard range and at cask strength. Something you rarely encounter since Dalwhinnie is not released by independent bottlers. However, one was recently bottled by North Star. Whether this is a one-off or if we’ll be seeing more indie bottlings from Dalwhinnie in the near future, I don’t know… But I do hope so though. Anyway, I digress so first let’s see how this Distillery Exclusive fares.

This Dalwhinnie has matured in sherry puncheons and is bottled at a strength of 53.6% ABV.

Dalwhinnie 12 year old tasting notes:

Nose: dried fruits such as raisins and plums. Followed by Acacia honey and toffee. Almonds. Later also sweet oranges and red apples.

Taste: oranges and red apples. Honey. Dark chocolate and toffee. A touch of maple syrup and almonds. Warming winter spices, with a hint of black pepper, cinnamon and cloves.

Finish: Long and lingering with cinnamon, maple syrup. Cloves and pepper.

A very tasty Dalwhinnie that is very nicely balanced. It has sweet notes and a nice layer of fruit, with the spices making sure it doesn’t get too sweet. A real winter warmer which I enjoy very much. Yup, this will certainly get me through the winter (impatiently waiting for the first snow to fall).