Review: The Singleton 18

On this lovely lazy Sunday, I thought it high time to visit a sample I received from a dear friend of mine. The Singleton of Dufftown is one of his favourite brands, and when I told him their bottlings never seemed to convince me all that much, he immediately pulled a bottle from his collection with the promise that I would enjoy this particular dram. So, let’s find out how well he knows that palate of mine!

P.S. You can find this dear friend of mine on Instagram, his nickname there is @notanotherwhiskeyman!

Tasting Notes: The Singleton of Dufftown 18 years old

Stats:

ABV: 40% (80 proof)

Age: 18 years old

Distillery: Dufftown Distillery

Owned by: Diageo

Category: Speyside Single Malt Scotch Whisky

Awards: The Scotch Whisky Masters Gold (2013, 2014, 2015), IWSC Silver (2014)

Chill-Filtered: Yes

Natural Colour: No

Setting:

As stated before, it’s a lazy Sunday afternoon for me. I’m lounging with some Otis Redding in the background. Keyboard on my lap and ready to write down my tasting notes. To do so I poured this 18-year-old Singleton neat, into a perfect dram glass.

Nose:

The first thing that hits is the caramel. It’s thickly spread across a malty biscuit and covered with white chocolate. I find this reminds me very much of the white chocolate edition of a Twix bar. Behind the thick sweetness there’s some fruitiness hiding as well, more specifically it’s a honeydew melon that I’m getting. The nose on this dram is all pleasantness, without bark or bite. Which can be a welcome change from some of the higher proof pours from time to time.

Palate:

The palate comes off a bit watery at first, but it quickly becomes thicker as it spreads across my tongue. There’s a certain buttery quality to it. The vanilla is obvious here but I’m getting some lemon as well. There are dry biscuits too and everything combined it brings an image of a luscious lemon cheesecake to mind. That image is only jarredslightly by a small wave of oaky bitterness that comes as the dram moves further down the palate. I feel like it’s held back a little too much by its ABV for my liking, as I would welcome the flavours to be a bit bolder. The lack of ABV is way more noticeable here than it was on the nose.

Finish:

The finish does linger quite long on this one. In the first seconds after swallowing the creamy butter notes of this dram truly shine. There are some apricots worked into the cream this time around. But I find these softer notes to fade quite fast, turning the apricots into peppermint which in turn slowly fades back into the oaky bitterness that was on the palate as well. Sadly, that’s the flavour that lasts the longest, as I was thoroughly enjoying the creamy notes from before.

Verdict:

Even though this dram did not really sell me on the Singleton, some cask strength independent bottlings of the distillery have done just that by now! For an 18-year-old this whisky is still very fairly priced though, going for about 60 euro online. There are aspects of this dram that show its potential, but it’s held back by its ABV way more than I like. I am very grateful I got to try this dram though, and I will be on the lookout for Singleton’s with a higher ABV starting now. Thanks again Thomas for letting me try this dram!

Rating:

78/100

Value:

B+ (It is an 18-year-old for 60 bucks after all!)

Click here to learn more about how I come up with my tasting notes and how I determine rating and value.

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