Another malt from the not-very beloved Miltonduff. I’ve quite liked the two I’ve reviewed so far (here and here). This is my first from a sherry cask (see below) and also the oldest I’ve had so far (though that mark will not last long). This was bottled by Riegger’s Selection, a German store and indie bottler of whom I know very little. As far as I can tell from their website they have some sort of connection to the Speyside distillery and select from the same warehouses as the Scott’s Selection line which originates in that distillery.
Miltonduff 23, 1987 (56.7%; Riegger’s Selection; cask no. 7057; from a purchased sample)
Nose: Roasted malt and some musky fruit–somewhere between lime zest and melon. The roasted malt turns pretty quickly to something closer to burnt toast. The fruit gets stronger and a little fermented as it sits. After a few more minutes there are clear sherry notes: mild gunpowder, dried orange peel. With a drop or two of water the citrus climbs up over the malt and it gets much brighter in general.
Palate: The citrus (lime) hits first on the palate followed by some sweetness and then the roasted malt. The fruit turns quite tropical as I swallow and then on the second sip it’s there much earlier. Just a faint bit of soapiness with some time. Water emphasizes the lime on the palate as well and pushes the tropical fruit back. It also pulls out some wood and more sweetness (simple syrup).
Finish: Long. Malty, with the tropical fruit lingering. A taste of iron at the very end. Much brighter with water.
Comments: A very interesting nose–some might say odd but I enjoyed it. The tropical fruit on the palate was a nice surprise and interesting development from the nose which promised much more roasted malt. And despite the 23 years in the cask it’s not particularly oaky. Still, it lacks some intensity and the finish is a touch weak. It doesn’t specify on the label (as far as I can tell from Whiskybase) but I’m pretty sure this was a refill sherry cask.
Rating: 87 points.