Here is the second whisky I drank at the Dornoch Castle Hotel‘s excellent whisky bar. Monday’s Bunnahabhain 34, 1980 was Phil Thompson’s value selection from the then current whisky list; this Glen Moray 34, 1977 was Simon Thompson’s. I have no idea if either whisky is still available at the bar. Before I drank it this whisky’s most significant characteristics were 1) that I’d not previously tried any older Glen Moray (though this record will not stand long as I have an even older one coming on Friday); and 2) that the name of the distillery is misspelled on the label. The good people at Malts of Scotland apparently didn’t catch that they had it as “Glen Morey” till the labels were on and apparently then decided not to bother. After I drank the whisky its mot significant characteristic became that it is the best Glen Moray I’ve yet had the pleasure of tasting. Here are my notes.
Glen Moray 34, 1977 (52.1%; Malts of Scotland; bourbon hogshead; tasted at a whisky bar)
Nose: A nice balance of polished oak and rich fruit: oranges, apricot, a touch of mango. The fruit comes to the fore with time. With water there’s some cream.
Palate: Leads with the fruit, sweet at first and then a big tropical burst (mango, pineapple, a hint of guava). There’s some white pepper as well. A little metallic with time but it works well with the fruit. Perfect texture. With more time the citrus is more lemon than orange. With water it gets more acidic and there’s more of the metallic note, some pine, and some herbal notes.
Finish: Long. The fruit and oak fade slowly; is that a lick of smoke at the end?
Comments: Lovely balance of fruit and oak. This is easily the best Glen Moray I’ve ever had—wish I’d bought a bottle when it was released. Will Friday’s even older iteration trump it? Let’s see.
Rating: 90 points.