Single malt whisky - tasting notes

16 Jan 2010

Master of Malt 30 Years old (Speyside)

Tasting notes by Ruben Luyten - Posted in * Undisclosed

Apart from bottling casks from known distilleries, Master of Malt also has a Secret Bottles series from undisclosed distilleries. These bottles only mention the region, Speyside in this case. It’s the second (dark sherry) release and currently also a third release (lighter) is on sale. There’s also a 40yo version.


Master of Malt | Speyside 30yo Undisclosed Speyside distillery 30 yo
(40%, Master of Malt 2008, 2nd edition)

Nose: deep oloroso sherry influence, but very playful at the same time. Big notes of pear frangipane (not sure if that type of cake is known all over the world, but it’s delicious). Raisins. Honey and demerara sugar. Whiffs of furniture polish and pine resin. A drop of water brings out red candy. Some superb sherry at work here. Mouth: not the most powerful attack, but very creamy. Starting on pine resin and evolving on dark chocolate. Mon Cheri. Very fresh considering its age. Dried plums and figs. Orange skin. Spicy fruitcake. More oranges when you add water, but it quickly gets watery. Finish: medium length, warm and nutty with hints of cloves.

A stunning nose on this Speyside sherry bottling. It slows down on the palate, but on the other hand it’s very smooth. Too bad there’s no version at 46%, it could have been truly heavenly. If I were to place a bet, I would say Glenfarclas. Perfect for sherry lovers. Around € 120.

Score: 90/100

Master of Malt 30 Years old (Speyside) 4 Ruben Luyten 2010-01-16
  • Teun

    Definitely Glenfarclas. and a rather good one. Especially on the nose. But really to bad that’s only at 40%. At higher strength I believe this could have been a really great whisky

  • Gal

    Yeah the farclas is logical. I don’t get why independent
    Bottlers use a wimpy 40% strength.
    It’s really a bummer

  • Ben @ Master of Malt

    Hi guys,

    It might please you to know that we’ve got some higher ABV non-cask strength whiskies in the pipeline at the moment.

    Every time we bottle a cask, we do so at cask strength, but the decision to move to a higher ABV on the non-cask strength stuff has already been taken :)

    Ben – Master of Malt – Whisky Shop

  • Teun van Wel

    Hi Ben
    sounds interesting. What kind of bottlings are you talking about?


  • Ben @ Master of Malt

    We’re looking at continuing with the same ‘secret bottlings’ and regional blended malts, but raising the ABV to provide more flavour…

    I’d actually be really interested to see how people feel about 40, 43, and 46% bottlings – it’s an interesting topic.

    This 30yo Speyside is a great example – it retails at £100 minus change – would people be happy to pay £115.95 (the extra product, plus the extra duty) for the same product at 46%?

    Ruben, any chance of a poll? :)

  • Ruben

    No tools for creating polls at the moment…
    Personally I don’t see much difference between £100 and £116, for me it’s the same price category. And I would certainly vote for 46%.

  • Teun

    would definitly vote 46%. Would also just as easyt pay 125,- for cask strength

  • Charlie

    46% for £116 and 48~50% for £120~130 are both good to me.

  • Pingback: Master of Malt 40 Years | WhiskyNotes()

  • Pingback: Master of Malt 50 years old (Speyside) | WhiskyNotes()

  • Charlie

    Hi Ben, is the 3rd edition going to be released soon?

  • Ben @ Master of Malt


    It’s out now – and really rather good. Totally different to the 2nd edition, more complex and honeyed than ‘sherry-monster’…

    Ruben – I’ve sent you a sample today, so hopefully it’ll be there soonish :)



  • Ruben

    Many thanks Ben!

  • Pingback: Master of Malt 30 Years old (Speyside) | WhiskyNotes()

  • Pingback: Master of Malt 30 Years old (Speyside) | WhiskyNotes()



November 2015
« Oct    

Coming up

  • Amrut 2009 (cask #2701)
  • Glenlivet 1981 (#9468 for TWE)
  • Lagavulin Distillers Edition (2015)
  • Talisker Distillers Edition (2015)
  • Laphroaig 32 Year Old
  • Glen Grant 65yo 1950 cask #2747 for Wealth Solutions
  • Mortlach 1959/1960 (G&M Royal Wedding)

1932 notes by Ruben

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