Single malt whisky - tasting notes

23 Sep 2011

Luc’s Surprise Tasting

Tasting notes by Ruben Luyten - Posted in * News

Luc TimmermansLast night I went to an event that I always look forward to: a whisky tasting chez Luc Timmermans, composed with whisky from his own (legendary) stash. It was a surprise tasting so we didn’t know what to expect.

As an aperitif, we tried the Glen Elgin 1984 by Thosop, a nice dram with fruity, waxy and mineral notes on the nose, joined by some herbs and soft bitter notes on the palate.


Then it turned out the theme was Caperdonich 1972.

Here’s the line-up:

  • Caperdonich 1972 (46%, G&M 2010, Connoisseurs Choice)
  • Caperdonich 1972 (46%, G&M 2011, Connoisseurs Choice)
  • Caperdonich 35 yo 1972 (48,3%, The Whisky Fair, 188 btl.)
  • Caperdonich 38 yo 1972 (53,6%, DT RoR, cask #7440, 181 btl.)
  • Caperdonich 38 yo 1972 (57,4%, Malts of Scotland, cask #1144, 98 btl.)
  • Caperdonich 38 yo 1972 (58,4%, Whisky Agency Perfect Dram, 145 btl.)
  • Caperdonich 39 yo 1972 (52,8%, Whisky Agency Private Stock, 57 btl.)

I had already tried most of them, except for the first two and the last one. The Gordon & MacPhail bottlings stood out because of their rather heavy sherry influence. At first I really liked them, but they came out last in our ranking as the refill sherry of the other releases suits the natural Caperdonich fruitiness much better.

Not everyone agreed on the rest of the ranking, but the recent release in the Private Stock series won the battle with a surprisingly unanimous vote. Indeed it’s marginally better than the Perfect Dram version which Luc, Johan and myself raved about no so long ago. Don’t bother looking for it, it’s gone already and I don’t even have a bottle myself.


By the way, I’m planning a big Caperdonich 1972 line-up myself with at least 24 versions waiting to be sampled. This will also include the 1972 DT for The Nectar which some people think of as the benchmark Caperdonich.

Luc’s Surprise Tasting Ruben Luyten 2011-09-23
  • Charlie

    Any difference between the first two? Thanks.

  • jdoucet
  • Ruben

    @Charlie: the 2011 is considerably better.
    @Jelle: no that one is not in the line-up, I was planning to focus on the refill sherry versions.

  • Ruben

    By the way, if anyone has a sample of #6698, #7130-7132, #7451 or the 16yo Dun Eideann, let me know!

  • Charlie

    I have #7461 by Duncan Taylor, which is also very good in my opinion.

  • Teun

    Sounds like a fantastic evening!
    Hope to be able to taste that new private stock bottling. Didn’t even know it existed.
    Curious to find out what you think of the 35y for teh Nectar. To me that is still the best of the 1972 capers I’ve tried. And unlike quite a few others I don’t think the Perfect Dram is the best. It’s good. but i prefer sevral Duncan Taylor ones (marginally)

  • Ruben

    In the end it’s all down to personal preferences. Except for the first two, every bottle from yesterday’s line-up was very high quality so everything else is nitpicking about subtle differences. The Perfect Dram version is very direct and intense with a little more oak than most DT’s I would say, whereas the Private Stock version is smoother and more silky. During the first 15 min, it struggled to open up but after some time it was really great.
    By the way, I’ve already tasted the 35yo for The Nectar and I think it’s superb. But you never know until you taste them head-to-head, so…

  • MARS

    Tried the 1972 for the nectar in a face to face with the 7420 and my preference goes for the 7420. But they are very similar.

  • Stuart Robson

    Its all a matter of taste of course (and, in my view at least, such things should never be considered set it stone) but on my journey through a number of Caper’s, 72’s and otherwise, it has been the TPD version that sits slightly ahead of the others. That said I havent tasted the Private Stock example or nowthe semi ledgendary Nectar DT 72.

    I would also highlight a different, less cask influenced take on the distillery from Adelphi in the form of a quite beautiful 1970 they bottled awhile back. Notes here:

    Come to think of it, considering Ruben’s point regarding the TPD 72 being a little heavier on the oak, it is a little suprising that it turns out to be my pic of the lot so far.

  • Rogier

    Hi Ruben, any chance that big line-up is coming soon? Or did I miss it somehow? I’m looking at several bottles but I’m having a hard time deciding which one to buy…

  • WhiskyNotes

    @Rogier Yeah, it’s still growing (32 expressions now) but still lacking the time to sit down and spend a few hours comparing them. My deadline is probably the end of September, otherwise it will be even more difficult to find the time.



November 2015
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Coming up

  • 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)

1933 notes by Ruben

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