SMWS Advent Calendar: Day 21

For tonight’s dram we’re heading to the silver screen. Because behind door number 21 from the SMWS advent calendar there’s a little bottle of 1970’s Movie Dram waiting. An 8-year-old Glen Scotia, aged in a first fill ex-bourbon barrel. The age statement on this one might seem a little bit of a let-down this far into the advent calendar, but in my experience Campbeltown whiskies can already have amazing palates at this young age. So we’ll have a look and see what it tastes like, before we determine its worth.

Tasting Notes: Society Cask 93.179 “1970’s Movie Dram”

ABV: 60.4% (120.8 proof)

Age: 8 years old

Distillery: Glen Scotia

Bottled by: The Scotch Malt Whisky Society

Category: Single Malt Scotch Whisky

SMWS Flavour Profile: Oily & Coastal

Chill-filtered: No

Natural Colour: Yes

Nose:

The flavour profiles SMWS choose for their drams can sometimes elude me somewhat. In the case of this 1970’s Movie Dram, it’s immediately clear why they chose for oily & coastal. There are hints of sea spray mixed with thickly oiled leather. And both of those notes are covered in a lovely layer of vegetal peat. I’m also getting some crushed almonds with a layer of walnut oil. If you pay enough attention to the nose, you’ll also discover ever so slight fruit notes. Specifically, mandarins come to mind. Water propels the coastal elements of this dram forward on the nose. I’m getting seashells, and a clear salty presence as well. Like when you drive up to the beach.

Palate:

Once again, the flavour profile speaks volumes for this dram. There’s a thick oily mouthfeel to this dram and there’s some salt in it as well. Other than that, I’m finding more nuts, just like on the nose. Aside from walnuts and almonds there’s also some hints of hazelnut. Some liquorice shows up too, just like marzipan and dark chocolate. But the mandarin flavours turn to oranges here. Specifically orange Pim’s (Jaffa cakes) come to mind. Water releases a bit of spice and some burnt caramel. The spice includes some cloves and nutmeg.

Finish:

Based of nose, palate and ABV, I would have expected this dram to have a longer finish. Instead, it stops at a medium length. The finish is very pleasant though, with a delicious balance between sweet and smoky. The oranges from the palate becomes freshly squeezed orange juice, perhaps with just a hint of lime this time around. And the smoke becomes a charred smouldering piece of driftwood. I like it a lot, I just wish it would last a bit longer. The finish becomes a lot sweeter with a bit of water. Thick layers of marmalade get released by adding a drop or two.

Verdict:

This whisky is right up my alley. It has a beautiful layer of peat, but still plenty else going on in the background as well. It reminds me of a long walk at the beach on a rainy day, and then afterwards putting your feet up near a lovely warm fireplace. A feeling of comfort that can only come after a good amount of hardship an exertion. This 1970’s Movie Dram isn’t as complex as some of the other drams I’ve tasted in this advent calendar, but it’s still one of the drams that brought me the most pleasure. Would I say this is an exceptional whisky? Not per se, but I would say it’s exactly my cup of tea. I wouldn’t mind this showing up under my Christmas tree.

Rating:

88/100

How did I know this was a Glen Scotia? Just look at the code and find it in my SMWS bottle codes list!

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