Two new oldies

Distillers all over Scotland seem to have recently discovered old stock in their warehouses. Two distillers, Auchentoshan and Balblair, are in these days each releasing their own 1965 vintage malt.

The Balblair 1965, the “cheap” one, comes from American Oak ex-Sherry casks. 350 bottles has been squeezed out of the casks that who’s contents was distilled on 23rd March 1965 (so I’m guessing 43 years old). It’s bottled at cask strength, 52.3% abv., and without any colouring what so ever.

Balblair 1965 is bright golden in appearance, superbly well-balanced, slightly smoky and with aromas of honey, raisins, pears and lemons. On the palate it is sweet, creamy and spicy with traces of honey and a slight smokiness, leading to a long-lasting finish.

Specialist retailers in the UK and worldwide will be getting a few bottles each of this expression which also comes with:

  • a bespoke Certificate of Authenticity
  • a booklet
  • a letter hand-signed by Distillery Manager John MacDonald, informing consumers that they are entitled to receive a free limited edition, signed and numbered print of the Balblair distillery by acclaimed Scottish photographer Fin Macrae (worth £300 according to Balblair)

But the price of £1,250 is just a tad above my limit, so this one is for the collectors.

Something that also can be said for the other 1965-vintage malt, this one from lowland triple-distiller Auchentoshan. Their bottling is 42 years old and comes from American oak barrels (ex-bourbon). Sort of a follow up to the Auchentoshan 1957 50yo released last year (shockingly enough there are still a number of bottles left of the 144 bottle release, just £2,500)

Golden barley in colour, the nose is described as having intense scents of honey, vanilla and coconut, balanced with fresh citrus and cooling mint tones. An initial sweet, mellow maltiness on the palate gives way to a delicate finish

A mere £2,000 for a bottle of this one (123 bottles in total), which is exclusively bottled for World Duty Free and their whiskyshop World of Whiskies. So if you want one of these bottles that “offers a great platform for Auchentoshan to develop a strong relationship with World Duty Free and its customer base of sophisticated whisky drinkers”, you’ll have to pop on-line and purchase a ticket from either Stansted, Heathrow, Gatwick, Edinburgh or Glasgow.

Me personally would rather have the 8 or 9 bottles of Balblair 1975 than the 1965, or 22 bottles of the Auchentoshan 21. You can even get two bottles of Auchentoshan 1965 from the last release (bottled June 2006, 200 bottles released in the UK in June 2007) and still have £400 left over for somethin worth while. See the £800-version of Auchentoshan 1965 at Royal Mile Whiskies.

PS! Also be on the look out for a 70 year old Mortlach from Gordon & Macphail in the next couple of days. 50yo G&McP-bottled Mortlach is available at £800 and £1,150, while a 60yo is available for £7,500. Simple math decrees that the 70yo will be around £50,000!


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