The Douglas Laing Tasting Room (Dec 2014)
I've now been to the Douglas Laing tasting room a few times now and each and every time I'm there i'm amazed by the hospitality and warm welcome shown.
Last week Neil (@NeilMackinnon1), Barry (@thewhiskyphiles) from The Whisky Philes and I spent a few hours in the company of Jan (@whiskyjan) tasting some of the fabulous DL whisky selection.
Neils top drams were the Highland Park 28, the Girvan and the Mystery Grain although he also commented on how fabulous the Dailuaine was as a starter dram.
My favourites were the Jura 22 (how could i not love that one), the Mystery Grain and the Highland Park, although both of us agreed there wasn't a single dram we wouldn't happily have in our collection.
I'm sure Barry will be chatting about his own experience on his blog at The Whisky Philes over the coming weeks and i look forward to reading those.
Once again thanks to everyone at Douglas Laing for having us along and for the fabulous hospitality and especially to Jan and Fred for taking time out of their busy schedules to spend some time with us.
Big Peat Christmas Edition 2014 (Douglas Laing)
Big Peat from Douglas Laing is a really well known Islay blended malt which has now been releasing an annual Christmas Limited run for a few years and this is the 2014 version.
Notes from tasting during my visit to their Glasgow headquarters this is a creamy, sweet, smoky, indulgent dessert of a dram that would go fabulous with some chocolate vienetta or just with your feet up after a mountain of Turkey.
This will sell out quickly so fire across to Master of Malt and get yourself one for Christmas now.
Initially a really creamy buttery smoke infused dessert with creamy fruitiness like those fruit and angel delight desserts some fireside ash and cedarwood smoke
Honey and vanilla with creamy gentle fresh angel delight infused with cedarwood and earthy smoke
Sweet, creamy, smoky, yum
Dailuaine 7yr Single Minded (Douglas Laing)
This Dailuaine 7 year old from Douglas Laing's Single Minded range was tasted as the first dram of the day at a visit to their Glasgow headquarters.
This was the perfect dram to start with, light and fruity and very fresh with hints of smooth silky Galaxy Chocolate.
A Great Aperatif type dram and one that you would happily sit and sip all day long, pretty difficult to get a hold of online although Master of Malt do have it available by the 3cl sample size.
Lovely soft centred fruit sweets soft sweet ripe figs, ripe peaches and nectarines some gentle silky Galaxy milk chocolate
Soft fruity sweets and nectarines with hints of spicy gingerbread men
Gingerbread and soft centred fruit sweets
Dalmore 17yr Old Particular (Douglas Laing)
I've never been tottaly sure on the sherried Own bottlings from Dalmore but this 17 year old ex bourbon from Douglas Laing's Old Particular range, tasted at a visit to their Glasgow headquarters, really did open my eyes.
This ex bourbon Dalmore still has that sweet fruitiness but none of the nuttiness and slight bitterness of the own bottlings, a real treat and one that made me sit up and pay attention to Dalmore in future.
Available to buy from Master of Malt this is really well priced and on my shopping list.
Soft and gentle with vanilla and gentle fruity notes with fresh fruit salad coming first and undercooked pastry hints of malt biscuits and rich tea biscuits
Oh this is fruity lots of vanilla and gentle custard creams fruity edges of peach and nectarines
Fresh fruits and touches of Christmas spice
Girvan 20 Clan Denny cask 10439 (Douglas Laing)
I always enjoy a good grain and this 20year old Girvan from Douglas Laing's Clan Denny range, tasted at a visit to their Glasgow headquarters, was right up my street.
Neil picked this dram as one of his favourites of the day, and no surprise, it really did tickle my fancy too and it is a great way to experience quality grain whisky.
Available to buy from Master of Malt this is a Single Grain that you really would like to try.
Lovely soft brown bread sweet notes with hints of Christmas spic but with no nip lots of barley sugar sweets and toffee coins
Demerara sugar and broken toffee with brown bread barley sugar sweets and candied fruits with a lovely soft gentle fruit salad
Brown bread toast and barley sugars
Highland Park 28yr Executive Decision (Douglas Laing)
Executive Decision is the non UK version of Douglas Laing's Directors Cut branding with the liquid split between the two brands. This Highland Park 28 was outstanding and a real highlight for me.
I really like ex bourbon Highland Park, so add a good few years to it and it becomes this wondeful, sweet, fruity slightly smoky dram that would easily help you ponder the days away.
This particular bottling no available but i will bet that this 21 year old available to buy from Master of Malt instead will be outstanding also.
Fresh fruit salad with hints of lovely vanilla and hints of fresh mossy/heathery peat smoke
Sweet, really fresh heathery mossy and gentle starchy potatoes and biscuits with vanilla essence
Rich tea biscuits and vanilla essence
Jura 22yr Old Particular (Douglas Laing)
A 22 year old Jura from Douglas Laing's Old Particular range was always going to grab my attention and it really fought it out with the Mystery Single Grain for my favourite dram of the day.
Typically Jura for me with pencil shavings and lots of sweet citrus fruits this is a great example of how Jura should taste, a cracking dram.
Available to buy from Master of Malt and 100% on my santa list.
Starts with pencil shavings and light waxy citrus fruits pickled lemons and lemongrass with light fruit salad and syrupy notes
Sweet gentle fresh pine needles and waxy lemons with syrup and lemongrass
Pine needles in syrup
Laphroaig 15yr cask sample (Douglas Laing)
A Laphroaig 15 year old cask sample from Douglas Laing now that just sounds like heaven to me.
Sweet meaty and mossy earthy smoke mix with some fish/seafood notes on the palate to produce a damn nice Islay dram that is ideal for cold winter nights.
This is a cask sample so not available to buy but you could try the 8 year old Laphroaig Provenance available to buy from Master of Malt instead which i have no doubts would be fabulous..
Sweet and meaty peat smoke with lovely sweetness underlying with lots of mossy ness and some gentle earthiness
Sweet fish sauce and smoke with earthy mossy and gentle smoke, smoked herrings
Gentle smoke and sweetness
Linkwood 17yr Old Particular (Douglas Laing)
This fabulous Linkwood 17 Year Old from Douglas Laing's Old Particular range, tasted at a visit to their Glasgow headquarters, was just all fruit and sweetness.
Floral notes and juicy fruit chewing gum made up the majority of this dram, it's so easy drinking and fabulously sweet and fruity, easy to describe as simply... YUM!!
You might need to hunt around a bit to get a bottle of this dram, I will be spending a bit of time on the phone trying to find one.
Oh wow super fresh and fruity with crushed fresh flowers carnations especially with juicy fruit chewing gum
Sweet and yummy with light juicy fruit chewing gum and fresh fruit salad and hints of gentle cinnamon
Sweet and fruity yum.
Miltonduff 18yr cask sample (Douglas Laing)
A fabulous Miltonduff 18 year old cask sample from Douglas Laing you can't really go wrong with that can you.
Miltonduff makes up a lot of the Ballantines blend and it's a cracking dram on it's own, this cask sample really showed it off as being woody, malty and fruity such lovely flavours.
This is a cask sample so not available to buy but you could try the 20 year old Miltonduff Old Particular available to buy from Master of Malt instead which i have no doubts would be fabulous..
Pencil shavings and malted biscuits lovely sweet lots of dark fruits coming through with hints of sweet tinned peaches in syrup
Again hints of pencil shavings with tinned peaches and tinned pears I. Syrup with a hint of nutmeg and cinnamon
Syrup covered soft pears and peaches
Mystery Single Grain Cask Sample (Douglas Laing)
This Mystery Single Grain from Douglas Laing is likely to end up in the Clan Denny rangeand i'm desperate to know when it will be available as I want a bottle now.
Jan and Fred had just sampled this recently and thought it would be fun to tease us with, it's sublime and one of the nicest grains i've ever had, I'm desperately wanting a bottle of this, it was probably my top dram of the day and i know it is on Neils list of top drams.
Sweet sweet toffee and freshly made still warm caramel sauce with lots of fresh fruit sweetness and hints of coffee / mocha and drinking chocolate
Toffee and mocha with sticky toffee pudding and overcooked sticky toffee sponge cake very sweet still, hints of mocha jelly belly jelly beans
Drying roller coaster of sweet, dry, sweet
A Thank You To Douglas Laing & Co
The Douglas Laing Tasting Room
Big Peat Christmas Edition 2014 (Douglas Laing)
Bunnahabhain 2007 8yr Provenance (Douglas Laing)
MacDuff 2007 8yr Provenance (Douglas Laing)