Last Friday night I met up with Gordon Richards, Jane Jervis and Adrian Shufflebotham to nose, taste and to ultimately select the next whiskies to be part of our Queen of the Moorlands range of Rare Cask whiskies....and what a treat it turned out to be.
We were to taste 4 whisky samples and select whiskies to be bottled in time for the forthcoming Islay Festival of Malt and Music and for the tastings that we do there. One of the whiskies would also go on to be our Queen of the Moorlands bottling especially for the Festival. As far as we know, we are the only independent bottler to bottle a whisky especially for the Feis Ile.
We decided that we would be bottling 3 out of the 4 whiskies that we tasted. All will be bottled at natural cask strength, without any colouring or chill filtering. They will be bottled straight from the cask as always. These whiskies are bottled from one single cask and are therefore extremely limited in number. There will be around 200 to 300 bottles of each whisky, and when it has gone, the flavour unique to each individual cask will never be repeated. Each bottle will be hand labelled and individually numbered.
One of the three whiskies was chosen as our Islay Festival Bottling 2010, and this was to be the Bunnahabhain 1997 heavily peated from a sherry hogshead...wonderful stuff!
Queen of the Moorlands Rare Cask New Bottlings 2010 Tasting Notes
1. Queen of the Moorlands Rare Cask Bowmore 1999 10 years old
Nose: Sweet, light and heathery at first with slowly building peat
Palate: Again sweet but incredibly smokey with a very oily mouthfeel
Finish: Smooth, medicinal, peaty and very long
Max 200 bottles available. £49.99 per bottle
2. Queen of the Moorlands Rare Cask Laphroaig 1996 13 years old
Nose: Light peat smoke followed by red fruit and spice
Palate: Very sweet, phenolic, bonfires, oily mouthfeel
Finish: Huge peat smoke aftertaste that lasts forever
Max 200 bottles available. £59.99 per bottle
3. Queen of the Moorlands Rare Cask Bunnahabhain 1997 12 years old Islay Festival Bottling 2010
Nose: Classy and rich with raisins, smoke and the seashore
Palate: Smooth with vanilla, olorosso sherry notes, fruit and nut chocolate, raisins and hints of the sea, oh and lots and lots of peat smoke
Finish: Rich and clean, the sweetness and peat smoke lingers for an age
Max 300 bottles available. £59.99 per bottle
All of these whiskies are still in cask at the moment, awaiting to be bottled shortly, but if you would like to reserve stock, please don't hesitate to contact us to secure a bottle or two of these fine drams. The Bunnahabhain in particular will sell very quickly.
We don't ship overseas but if you live on Islay or if you are visiting the island during the festival, we can take payment and arrange to deliver to you between the 22nd May and June 5th.
Don't forget we'll be holding our whisky tastings during the festival week where Adrian, Jane and I will be happy to talk you through the new whiskies.