I have one sample left from the Signatory Vintage 30th Anniversary series (the first series bottled in the summer of 2018): the Port Ellen 1982. Nowadays a rare occasion to try an expression from this lost distillery.
Port Ellen 35 yo 1982 (55,1%, Signatory Vintage ‘30th Anniversary’ 2018, refill sherry butt #2040, 567 btl.)
Nose: Port Ellen alright. The delicate but meticulously balanced profile that combines wet chalk, shellfish, carbolineum, diesel, Kalamata olives and the best mezcal notes but on the other hand also fruity notes like peaches and yellow plums, honey and lime. Herbal touches. Great warm, waxy notes too (paraffin, greased coats) – they only started to appear like this in Port Ellen in expressions of 30 years and older in my opinion.
Mouth: sweet and fruity at first (peaches), then surprisingly peaty and tarry. Seaweed, brine, tarry notes, plenty of iodine and herbal / medicinal notes (sage, camphor). Then back to fruitiness, even hints of mango and sweet grapefruit, a little vanilla and finally also olive brine and liquorice.
Finish: very long, sweet and smoky, slightly peppery with a hint of herbal bitterness. Closer to the younger expressions now.
What a wonderful Port Ellen, among the best ones I’ve had even. I really love the way they get older. Still available in some places.