Single malt whisky - tasting notes

20 Mar 2012

Clynelish 1989 (Malts of Scotland)

Tasting notes by Ruben Luyten - Posted in Clynelish

Both Malts of Scotland and The Whisky Agency have recently launched a Clynelish 1989.


Clynelish 1989 Malts of ScotlandClynelish 22 yo 1989
(53,2%, Malts of Scotland 2012, bourbon hogshead MoS 12012, 235 btl.)

Nose: close to the Clynelish 1989 TWA Moody Lions, with a slightly buttery tarte tatin sweetness and ripe melon. Some honey. Hints of strawberry jam even? Quite warm compared to other Clynelish expressions, not many mineral / coastal notes. Of course the classic beeswax is present, and some heather / leafy notes as well, but the whole is surprisingly round and pastry-like. Mouth: very complex, very beautiful. Lemon and warm waxy notes. Again a certain vanilla sweetness in the background. Sweetened grapefruit juice. Candied ginger. Finish: long, jammy with wax and a faint bitterish (zesty) note in the very end.

A sweeter and jammier version of Clynelish. Quite delicious in my opinion. On top of that it’s well-priced so you might want to consider this one for your collection: around € 115.

Score: 91/100

Clynelish 1989 (Malts of Scotland) 4.5 Ruben Luyten 2012-03-20
  • Pieter

    Well priced? I find it that you’ve started to accept those higher prices Ruben. €115 for a 22yo seems on the more expensive side to me. Just like the 14yo Bowmore you recommend for €80.

    In my opinion a 14yo should cost no more than €50. a 22yo should be no more than €100.

  • Ruben

    Interesting comment, Pieter.

    I try to think about quality rather than age alone. I mean, even though they have slightly different profiles, this Clynelish is the same quality as the 1982’s in my opinion. Would you pay € 115 if it were 30 years old then? What would be the difference?

    Some of the unique Bowmore 1993’s were € 110 up to 140 yet everybody seemed to want one. That 1997 is rather similar, only 2 or 3 years younger and considerably cheaper.

    We won’t be able to buy everything we like any more. It’s partly because prices are going up really fast (I agree) but also because we’re seeing a lot of new bottlers and most of them are presenting very good whisky. It mostly bothers me that some of them seem to think mediocre whisky also deserves a higher price these days.

  • Michael

    Last year, the 27-yo Clynelish from Malts of Scotland was 98 Euros – when it came out. This year, the new 27 or 28-yo Clynelish from MoS was 125 €. Thats more than 27% prise rise in less than a year for a similar product.

    115 € for a 22-yo is a bit steep but then again – its up to oneself.
    As long as the customer pays, why not sell it at that price?

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