Single malt whisky - tasting notes

28 May 2009

St. Magdalene 1970 23y (Rare Malts)

Posted by: Ruben Luyten In: St. Magdalene

Here’s another St. Magdalene that I’ve tasted alongside the St. Magdalene 1982 26y by Douglas Laing. Did you know the St. Magdalene distillery was built at the site of a former lepers colony?

This Rare Malts release is pretty rare, the 1979/1998 version is a lot more common. If you’re able to spot a bottle, expect to pay around € 300.

 

St. Magdalene Rare Malts 1970 St. Magdalene 23y 1970 (58,1%, RM 1994)

Nose: powerful and direct. Fruity but… quite some sulphur as well. Too bad really. I decided to let it air for 20 minutes. That helped, but the off-notes didn’t disappear completely. There’s definitely peat on the nose, and some burnt caramel / toffee. Some orange candy, but nothing like the femininity of the 1982 Douglas Laing St. Magdalene OMC. I, fact, this one didn’t appeal much to me. Mouth: powerful and rather grassy (burnt grass even). Slightly nutty (almonds). Oil, marzipan, herbs. Finish: very long and chewy. Herbal notes again, light peat and dry oak.

I find it difficult to evaluate this one. It definitely has some qualities, but I’m missing some finesse. I think “obscure” fits this bottling well. I prefer the Douglas Laing.

Score: 78/100

St. Magdalene 1970 23y (Rare Malts) 2 Ruben Luyten 2009-05-28
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  • John martindale

    I have a bottle – bought it in 95 – pass the (now flats) distillery every time I go to Edinburgh by train. I love malts – drink it/ keep it/ sell it ? Any help with my dilemma? My heart says keep and drink …

  • http://www.whiskynotes.be Ruben

    Tough choice. I think there’s better whisky around, so I would sell and get another one (or two) to drink. Are you familiar with St. Magdalene?

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  • Tony: Well the 1401 batch 8 could be found easily in most places for £200 - indeed I got one for £180 with a discount. The £225 price was a bit high and
  • WhiskyNotes: Don't just look at the UK - it's not always representative for the rest of the world. The last 1401 for Europe was batch 8. I bought that one for €
  • Sam: Nicely written notes, not rated this myself yet. Just to confirm, it's nowhere near a 40% price rise though. The last 1401 released in the UK was at

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1659 notes by Ruben

WhiskyNotes - Ruben LuytenThis blog is my personal collection of impressions, written while searching for the ultimate single malt whisky.