We’re proceeding with the 2019 Special Releases and I’m sure this Mortlach 26 Year Old is on many whisky lovers’ wishlist.
Mortlach is a bit of a difficult brand in my opinion: drastically premiumized in 2015 but without success, then given a makeover with more reasonable prices last year. I think they are now offering much better value for money (but also significant batch variation). Interesting to see where this is going.
Mortlach 26 Years is a 1992 vintage, matured in first-fill PX and Oloroso seasoned casks.
Mortlach 26 yo 1992 (53,3%, OB ‘Special Releases’ 2019, first-fill Oloroso & PX seasoned casks, 3883 btl.)
Nose: leathery sherry, with heady whiffs of paint thinner and oak polish up front. Thick raisins in rum, baked apples, stewed rhubarb and dates. Blackberry jam. Walnuts and burnt sugar. Light meaty notes and mushrooms in the background. A bit GlenDronachian, especially the Revival in its early days.
Mouth: oily and leathery, fairly dry with a marked oaky side, but with enough fruity notes to balance it. Dark cherries, raisins and a lot of dates. Charred oak with some tannins, mint, gentian. Herbal tea and ginger cake. Dark chocolate too.
Finish: long, still very dry and herbal, with toffee, orange peel and liquorice.
You need big sherry to counter the beefy Mortlach spirit. A successful marriage, albeit with some serious oak on the palate. The nose deserves a high score though. Around € 1750 – a heavy price compared to the Mortlach 20 Years or even the old 25 Years.