Jan Vissers is the owner of The Single Malt Whisky Shop in Zammel (Belgium) and a proud ambassador for the Arran distillery.
For Jan’s 35th birthday, distillery manager James MacTaggart selected a 16 years old cask that was released as a Private Cask bottling. It’s clearly from a sherry hogshead and probably the darkest Arran so far.
Arran 16 yo 1996
(55,7%, OB Private Cask for Jan Vissers 2013, oloroso sherry hogshead, 174 btl.)
Nose: nicely aromatic, with a wide array of sherry aromas. Juicy cherries (hints of Ginjinha), Christmas pears in wine, redcurrants, red plums. Almond cream and a soft caramel note. Growing spicy over time – Christmas spices indeed. Cinnamon, cloves, ginger. Light floral notes and oak polish. Milk chocolate and Café Noir biscuits. Whiffs of cedar oak and mint as well. Very sherried, in a superbly clean way.
Mouth: again highly influenced by the sherry. Raisins, muscovado sugar, chocolate and dried fruits, followed by spices again (cloves, pepper). A dry edge of strong black tea, as well as some tobacco leaves.
Finish: long, mostly on liquorice, dark chocolate and walnut hints.
Very punchy, flavoursome Arran, with the sherry in the lead. This profile usually comes with a higher age and a higher price. My best Arran so far. Around € 75 – sold out.