No need to introduce the Game of Thrones whisky series, which initially featured eight Dieageo single malts in a partnership with HBO. Then in late 2019 a ninth and final release was announced: Mortlach 15 Year Old ‘Six Kingdoms’.
This Mortlach was matured in first-fill Oloroso sherry-seasoned casks and finished in ex-bourbon barrels. It is significantly more expensive than the others and comes in a gold canister.
A lot has been written about this series. It was supposed to be limited but then re-issued, heavily discounted and even then it’s still rather widely available. It was supposed to be collectible as well, but as long as shops don’t manage to sell their allocation then no price increase is to be expected. Some say it was just a hype, merchandising with no real quality (with a few exceptions). Etcetera, etcetera. Now that the dust has settled, let’s find out…
Mortlach 15 yo ‘Six Kingdoms’ (46%, OB ‘Game of Thrones’ 2019)
Nose: quite rich and sweet, with layers of buttery biscuits, sweet apples and stewed peaches, as well as some raisins and mineral notes underneath. Dried flowers, some leather and orange peel. Almonds. It’s waxy and slightly meaty, but not overdone, with a well dosed amount of bourbon roundness.
Mouth: a rather weighty body, with plenty of sweetness at first. Stewed apples, (slightly burnt) brown sugar and toffee, leading to vanilla cream. Then it becomes nuttier with a layer of baking spice (black pepper and nutmeg) and oak. Orange peels. Hints of salted chocolate.
Finish: fairly long, more sweetness and spice. Toffee and pepper with a burnt edge.
In my opinion this is simply an enjoyable Mortlach, with or without the link to Game of Thrones. The bourbonny sweetness makes it a little unexpected, but I’d recommend nonetheless. While plenty of people said this was their favourite in the series, most complained about the high (initial) price. Luckily The Whisky Exchange is heavily discounting it at the moment. If you skipped it merely because of the high price, maybe you should reconsider now.
By the way, they may not have announced it yet, but it seems TWE is shipping to certain European countries again after Brexit, including Austria, Belgium, Greece, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Switzerland… I placed a first order earlier this week.