The second of the Whisky Exchange exclusives: an Arran 1996 Premium Cask.
The cask type isn’t disclosed, or even entirely unknown. In the early years of the distillery they took in plenty of different cask types and didn’t always keep track of their provenance. Or at least that’s what they say. Based on the dark colour it must be a wine cask of some kind.
Arran 24 yo 1996 ‘Premium Cask’ (53,4%, OB for The Whisky Exchange 2021, cask #757, 273 btl.)
Nose: quite a sourish profile, with hints of moist tobacco and oranges with clove up front. After that it goes in two directions. More sour fruits on the one hand, think raspberry, blood orange and blackcurrants. On the other hand some roasted nuts, even a smoky note and dark brewed tea.
Mouth: a richly spiced arrival, with pepper, clove and a Moroccan mint mix. More tobacco and plenty of ginger, dark chocolate and different roots. Walnut skins. Fennel seed. Some bitter oranges, but fruity notes are rather hidden now. Very savoury and a bit funky, even showing a flinty, fragrant, even slightly perfumed hint (not uncommon in really, really active wood). French oak then? Vive l’anarchie!
Finish: very long, very leafy, with plenty of spice (including salt) and some green bitterness.
Wait, what was that? Very dark and slightly over-infused. Red wine or Port tannins? Or simply a very active European oak sherry cask? A really interesting release for sherry bomb aficionados. This is a TWE exclusive, available as we speak.