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KWM 2021 Whisky Calendar Day 18: Old Pulteney 12 Year Old

Posted on November 27, 2023

by Evan

The days keep rolling on by. Just like that and we are all of the sudden on the eighteenth window for the 2021 KWM Whisky Calendar. How did that happen? Where did the time go? Your guess is as good as mine. The only thing I am certain about is that today we are going to be tasting the Old Pulteney 12-Year-Old!

For a long time, one of the factoids that you could bring up about Old Pulteney was that it was made at the most northern distillery on the mainland of Scotland. That title was taken from it back in January of 2013 when Wolfburn Distillery began producing spirit. Pulteney Distillery resides in the town of Wick, right on the coast of the Western Highlands, just south of the Orkney Islands. Its nearest neighbours include the aforementioned Wolfburn, which is around a 40-minute drive to the north and west in Thurso. Beyond that and further north on the Orkney Islands itself - Highland Park and Scapa. Clynelish Distillery is a one-hour drive south along the A9 and the Eastern Coast of Scotland.

Pulteney Distillery was founded in 1826, and other than a 21-year closure from 1930 to 1951 it has spent most of it history in production.It is currently owned by Inver House Distillers / Thai Beverages PLC, which also owns the two other Highland distilleries: Knockdhu (bottled under the name anCnoc) and Balblair. The company also owns Speyburn Distillery and Balmenach Distillery (which makes Caorunn Gin) within the Speyside region.

Dubbed on the label as "The Maritime Malt", Old Pultney whisky typically shows a good amount of coastal influence but is unpeated. For me, this combination makes it a fun whisky to introduce to people who say they want a "Speyside Malt". Getting that salty, seaside experience in a whisky without any of that dirty peat can be an epiphany to some people. It can be easy to assume that you can't make a coastal whisky without it being smoky at the same time if you are still new to Scotch Whisky and not used to the different styles available. To me, the saltiness of Old Pulteney malts is a welcome bit of nuance that helps bring out the flavours in its lighter spirit.

The Old Pulteney line of Single Malts includes this 12 Year Old that we will be tasting today as well as a 15 Year, 18 Year and 25 Year old plus the vintage Flotilla, and the Huddart, which is finished in ex-Islay whisky casks to give it a touch of smoke and peat.

Old Pulteney 12-Year-Old - 40%

This is the flagship bottling of the Old Pulteney range of Single Malts. it is matured in ex-Bourbon Casks.

Evan’s Tasting Note

Nose: Salted toffee, honey, freshly cut apple slices, and pear pie with a graham cracker and cinnamon crumble on top.

Palate: Honey roasted almonds, sweet oatcakes, dried apple chips, salted macadamia nuts, and a microwaved s'more.

Finish: Lightly sweet and salty.

Comment: As always, this is a great value whisky and a good showing of what the Old Pulteney lineup is all about. If you enjoy this you should try the Old Pulteney Flotilla or the 15 Year Old next.

Old Pulteney 12 is always a delicious dram, but I do find myself wishing it was bottled at 46%. C'est la vie! Maybe tomorrow will bring us something stronger?

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Twitter and Instagram: @sagelikefool

This entry was posted in Whisky, Tastings, Whisky Calendars, KWM Whisky Calendar 2021



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