The first Clynelish distillery, built in 1819, was renamed Brora in 1969, shortly after a new plant was opened adjacent to the first one. The name Clynelish was then used for the new facilities, while the Brora plant was dismantled in 1983.
This Clynelish 12y must have been distilled somewhere in the first half of the 1970’s. The name implies that it was made in the Clynelish II distillery, although the smoky taste is typical for Brora…
Clynelish 12y (57%, G&M 1980’s – Ainslie & Heilbron)
Nose: dried fruits (plums, raisins). Pine forest, resinous notes, wax, hints of mint as well (reminded me of a good Bourbon). Soft smoke. Absolutely superb. On the palate, there are burnt notes, slightly bitter chocolate, the sweet smoke again, and syrup (traditional Belgian apple and pear syrup from Liège). Wood and smoke keep getting stronger.
Really warm whisky, for a cold winter night. Bottled 25 years ago and genuinely “old style”, although it may not have a truly classic Clynelish (or Brora) profile. Frankly, I don’t care. It’s fabulous stuff and if I ever find this bottle somewhere, I’m buying it!
Well deserved 93/100.