Tullibardine lay silent from 1994 until 2003, when a business consortium snapped it up and started upgrading it. Part of this revival was The Marquess Collection, a series of limited editions launched in 2016 and a nod to famous historical figures who bore the Marquess of Tullibardine title in Scotland for centuries. Since the second Marquess was called William Murray, the series is also called The Murray.
The eight release in this range is the Double Wood Edition, composed of spirit distilled in 2005. After an initial maturation in first-fill bourbon casks, it went into first-fill sherry casks for a second period.
Tullibardine The Murray ‘Double Wood Edition’ 2005 (46%, OB ‘The Marquess Collection’ 2020, 17.550 btl.)
Nose: rich and honeyed. A fruity core with a lot of apricot jam, honeydew melon and baked banana, mixed with vanilla ice cream. Rich vanilla cake. Then some custard, stewed berries and figs. Marshmallows and citrus candy as well. Even a hint of Moscatel from Valencia. In short a great example of a jammy profile.
Mouth: the bourbon wood stands out first, with a good deal of vanilla and orchard fruits. Creamy custard. Apricots again, oranges, honey and mead. Stewed bananas. Drops of lemon syrup. After that there’s more (floral / hoppy) oaky influence, which turns into a slightly tangy / walnutty and herbal edge, making it loose a few points.
Finish: medium length, with sweet lemons, white pepper and juniper. A little woody again.
This Double Wood Edition boasts a dialed up profile, with the bourbon oak in the lead. While it has a very jammy, rich nose that is easy to like, the woody goodness gets a little more plankish in the mouth, curbing our enthusiasm a little. Nonetheless a supple and successful designer whisky with a good price. Still available here and there.