Single malt whisky - tasting notes

04 May 2012

Knockando 25 years

Tasting notes by Ruben Luyten - Posted in Knockando

Knockando is a big seller in France and Spain but it’s not too popular around here. This Knockando 25 years, the oldest official release at that point, was part of Diageo’s 2011 Special releases. It was matured in first fill European oak sherry casks.


Knockando 25 yearsKnockando 25 yo
(43%, OB 2011, 4758 btl.)

Nose: a sherry character that I usually relate to refill sherry rather than first fill. Subtle sherry, quite fragrant and very fruity. Soft butterscotch, raisins. and milk chocolate. Quite some red berries, hints of ripe bananas, plum jam. Elegant polished oak and leathery notes. There’s a very faint vegetal note in the background, as well as a hint of smoke. Extremely elegant. Mouth: light, a tad weakish, but very fruity with an array of jams: strawberry, redcurrant, orange, plum… Gets drier, with oak, nuts, coffee, tobacco and Christmas cake flavours. Hints of rosehips. Liquorice and a hint of smoke again. Finish: medium long, on cocoa powder and spices.

I really like this kind of sherried elegancy, half-sweet / half-dry, so although it’s slightly tame on the palate, it gets into the 90’s territory.
Around € 160.

Score: 90/100

Knockando 25 years 4 Ruben Luyten 2012-05-04
  • aw

    Bottling a Special Release at 43% is a pretty odd thing to do, and something I hope they don’t repeat. I enjoy this – perhaps not as much as you – but I too found the palate to be weak. At cask strength, and non-chillfiltered, this could have been a legend.

  • nulty

    I liked this one, not 90 like though.
    The sherry on the nose was quite beautiful but the palate was weak and woody to me.

  • S.

    Hi everyone,

    I also agree with the weakness/tameness in the palate as well as with the woodiness.
    Overall, an ordinarily sherried whisky where I can’t see how anyone could go and fetch NINETY POINTS for!
    And a DISGRACE to go and bottle such a one off “special” bottling at 43% (meaning Chill-filtered!!)
    Let me take this oportunity to remind that the latest batch of the Talisker 25 got bottled at 45.8%!
    That REALLY HURTS! And they’ll blame the taxman “forgetting” that they’ve been over-charging for it for 4-5 years now!…

  • WhiskyNotes

    Hi Selim, I think people sometimes react a bit dramatic on alcohol volumes. A 43% whisky can be pretty punchy while I’ve had 50% whiskies that were a bit mellow so you can’t rule out a whisky simply by its strength.
    Of course I would like to have 46% or 48% as a rule of thumb for upmarket expressions, but in this case it results in an easy drinking whisky with enough flavour and complexity. Moreover I tend to prefer this kind of elegant sherry influence (you call it “ordinary”, I think it’s extraordinary) above overpowering “dark” sherry, therefore yes, 90 points.
    Just out of curiosity, what bottling did you adore yourself lately?

  • S.

    Hi Ruben,

    to answer perhaps too broadly to your question, here are only some of my “recent” favourites from the last 6-8 months approx. (I can’t just sum it up to one bottling).

    Benriach 1971 cask 1947, aged 40yo, Hogshead (2011)

    Glendronach 1971, cask 1436, 40 Years Old, PX Sherry Puncheon (July 2011)

    Glendronach 1978, cask 1067, 32 Years Old, Oloroso Sherry Puncheon (November 2011)

    Glenmorangie 1992, 10 Year Old, cask 1285

    Springbank 18 (Batch 3, which is the 2nd to come out in the standard range black box)

    Bunnahabhain 1979, Duncan Taylor, cask 1774 (June 2011)

    Balvenie 15 Single Barrel, 47.8%, cask 7134 (25/10/2011)

    Glenlivet Nadurra (new batch and packaging, 53%)

    Bowmore 1993, The Whisky Agency/Maison Du Whisky [Grey label] (2010)

    Lagavulin 12 (2007)

    Highland Park 21, 47.5% (Duty Free & 2011)

    Old Pulteney 17

    Old Pulteney 1991 Single Cask #0029 (2007)

    Old Pulteney 1991 Single Cask #0030 (2007).

    This is only a “short” list.
    There are too many to mention so I’ll stop here.
    I may also have forgotten a few…

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November 2015
« Oct    

Coming up

  • Lindores 2015 festival bottling
  • 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.