Once in a while someone comes up with a brilliant idea. In this case Malts of Scotland who launched a brand-new and very interesting series called Angel’s Choice.
It will be used to release low-yield bottlings from old casks with a high angel’s share (hence the name). To let as much people as possible enjoy these casks, they’ve chosen a 35 cl. bottle with a similar shape as their full size bottles. I think it’s an excellent idea, it allows you to try more whiskies for the same budget, or experience something that would have been out of your reach in a standard bottle. True, we’ve seen a similar idea before, but I’m hoping it will really gain a foothold now!
Note that the yields can be extremely low. This particular release (from an undisclosed distillery founded in 1836) only has 55 (half) bottles! Given the low numbers of bottles, not every release will be sold in each country.
In this first batch, Belgium will see a Glen Elgin 1975 apart from the 41 years old Glenfarclas seen below. I’ve also noticed a Glenrothes 1970, Tomatin 1966 and Glenlossie 1975 in German shops.
“1836” 1970 (53,5%, Malts of Scotland ‘Angel’s Choice’ 2011, sherry cask MoS 11025, 55 btl., 35 cl.)
Nose: a deeply fruity kind of sherry. Sultanas, figs and quinces but also juicy raspberry jam and grenadine. Everything’s coated by some very refined oak varnish, mint and old roses. Great. Whiffs of herbal tea and aniseed. Fudge. Also a soft smoky note and a clean matchstick note, but very much in the background. Very high class, especially the fresh fruits make it stand out.
Mouth: rather sweet attack on strawberries and blood oranges. Kirsch. Fruit cake. Quickly overtaken by drier notes: different kinds of herbs as well as liquorice and hints of cough syrup. Oak as well. A tad rounder with a few drops of water.
Finish: long, rather dry, minty and slightly resinous with echoes of chocolate and fruity notes.
Great deeply sherried Glenfarclas with a juiciness that’s certainly above average. Around € 140 for this half bottle.