Single malt whisky - tasting notes

10 Jan 2012

Port Ellen 1983 (Old Bothwell cask #230)

Tasting notes by Ruben Luyten - Posted in Port Ellen

A couple of weeks ago, Fredrik posted a comment that the Port Ellen 1983 bottled by The Whiskyman was supposed to be the same whisky as this Old Bothwell cask #230.

We all know Old Bothwell has good contacts in Belgium, the alcohol volume is exactly the same and 120 bottles doesn’t seem to be a full cask, so indeed it might have been a split cask. In the end it doesn’t matter, let’s just enjoy the Old Bothwell release.


Port Ellen 1983 - Old Bothwell cask 230Port Ellen 28 yo 1983 (55,5%, Old Bothwell 2011, cask #230, 179 btl.)

Nose: sophisticated and balanced. Great mineral notes, lemon and grapefruit aromas, soft camphor, marzipan, walnuts, wet wool… all the typical things we’re expecting from a high-quality Port Ellen. Complex, crystal-sharp and rounded at the same time. Mouth: oily and more punchy now. There’s peat, brine, citrus, some oak but again also sweeter notes of marzipan and hazelnuts towards the end. And a nice pepper / ginger combo. Finish: very long with citrus, smoke and salty liquorice.

Very good Port Ellen. Could this be The Whiskyman’s cask? Yes, very much so. I’ve tried them side-by-side and couldn’t spot major differences. Nice surprise to see this one is still available and cheaper. Around € 170. Thanks for the sample, Fredrik!

Score: 92/100

Port Ellen 1983 (Old Bothwell cask #230) 4.5 Ruben Luyten 2012-01-10
  • Nikelaos

    Very good site, very helpful to ethusiasts/collectors.

    This Old Bothwell states 28y old, while the Whiskyman bottle states 27y. How is this possible, if it is the same whisky (or it is supposed to be)?

    The whisky is distilled 2/2/1983; the Whiskyman bottle is bottled in 2011 (and probably after 2/2/2011?)

    Would shared casks be bottled at the same time?

  • Ruben

    Not necessarily. If it’s the same whisky, then they’ve taken whisky out of this cask at two distinct moments, 120 bottles before 02/02/2011 (27yo) and the rest after that date (28yo). It happens regularly. You see, smaller bottlers don’t buy / own the cask itself, they usually buy unlabeled bottles and they don’t know what else happened to the cask.

  • Rogier

    Where is this still available?

  • Ruben

    I think TWE is now the only place:

  • Fredrik

    Happy to be of help Ruben. As I was one of those who did not get the chance to buy the Whiskyman version it feels good to have this bottle instead, sometimes you get lucky when buying blind. Big thanks for taking your time and clearing this up!

  • David Lilley

    Old Bothwell seem to specialise in Port Ellens and the reviews of their bottlings are excellent. I’ve purchased PE directly from Old Bothwell and the price is very reasonable.

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November 2015
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Coming up

  • Amrut 2009 (cask #2701)
  • Lagavulin 12 Years (2015)
  • Lindores 2015 festival bottling
  • Glenlivet 1981 (#9468 for TWE)
  • Talisker Distillers Edition (2015)
  • Laphroaig 32 Year Old
  • Glen Grant 65yo 1950 cask #2747 for Wealth Solutions
  • Mortlach 1959/1960 (G&M Royal Wedding)

1929 notes by Ruben

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