Neil Looks At Some Rare Vintages

Mortlach 1954 Rare Vintage (Gordon and MacPhail) When I saw on The Whisky Wire twitter timeline that there was an evening with Gordon and MacPhail I quickly checked my dates to see if I was available, first part successful.

Next after applying I had to wait to find out if I was one of the lucky few selected and to be honest I was thinking I would be unlucky due to the demand that I would expect was huge.

Luckily enough I was successful and it wasn't until I was getting ready to go to theGlasgow whisky festival to find out how very lucky I was. The doorbell rang and I assumed it was a parcel for my son who's birthday it was on the Sunday but no it was for me from Gordon and MacPhail.

I opened the package and could not believe my eyes at the selection of whisky we would be sampling.

Gordon and MacPhail Out of 5 samples 3 of them are a good bit older than me which if in your in your 40s is saying something with the earliest being a 1954 Mortlach and the youngest being a Balblair from a youthful 1985. With the quality always associated with GM bottlings this certainly is a memorable Tweet Tasting so thank you to Steve from The Whisky Wire and a massive thank you to Gordon and MacPhail for sending what really are some sensational whisky history drams.

My Notes are shown below, apart from the ones for the 1974 Glenlivet as Tom had already reviewed it, so those are his notes.


Balblair 1985 Rare Vintage (Gordon and MacPhail)

Balblair 1985 Rare Vintage (Gordon and MacPhail) First up on the Gordon and MacPhail Rare Vintages Tweet Tasting from The Whisky Wire was the youngest of the drams, this 1985 Balblair.

lots of lovely orchard fruits in here, a really thick mouthfeel and a a nice herbal finish, tasty stuff.

You can buy this dram now from The Whisky Exchange

Many thanks to Steve from The Whisky Wire and to Gordon and MacPhail for including me on this Tweet Tasting.

 

a good fresh fruity nose, instinctively think sherry not bourbon, opening up into vanilla and plums but a linger of polish, ever changing with apples now coming through, lots to pick up on, sweet apples and pears with buttery oats and some cocoa powder

Palate is very delicate and thick and very smooth and spicy green apples, with a touch of water it develops into a mouth hugging delight.

herbal kick like cut damp grass

Bottle Name: Balblair 1985 Rare Vintage (Gordon and MacPhail)
Age: 1985 Vintage
ABV: 43.00
Distiller: Balblair
Bottler: Gordon & MacPhail
Type: Single Malt
From: Scotland, Highland


Glen Grant 1966 Rare Vintage (Gordon and MacPhail)

Balblair 1985 Rare Vintage (Gordon and MacPhail) The middle dram on this Gordon and MacPhail Rare Vintages Tweet Tasting from The Whisky Wire was this 1966 Glen Grant.

obviously as a Scotsman there was definitely nothing else exciting happening in 1966 other than this magnificent dram being laid down to rest for a bit.

This dram changes so much on the nose as it airs, it's like someone has added a different dram after the first sniff.

My dram of the evening, it just worked perfectly for my palate.

You can buy this dram now from The Whisky Exchange

Many thanks to Steve from The Whisky Wire and to Gordon and MacPhail for including me on this Tweet Tasting.

 

First nose pears, polish and mothballs, like an old wardrobe in a charity shop, as its left to breath apples, and celery come through, something unique for me, then lemons and cereal notes, sweetening the more it airs, before creamy fruit pie.

raisins and pear drops, some grass comes in here too, tasty stuff, lots of juicy fruit

longish finish with hint of leather and tobacco

Bottle Name: Glen Grant 1966 Rare Vintage (Gordon and MacPhail)
Age: 1966 Vintage
ABV: 40.00
Distiller: Glen Grant
Bottler: Gordon & MacPhail
Type: Single Malt
From: Scotland, Speyside


Mortlach 1954 Rare Vintage (Gordon and MacPhail)

Mortlach 1954 Rare Vintage (Gordon and MacPhail) The final dram on this Gordon and MacPhail Rare Vintages Tweet Tasting from The Whisky Wire was this 1954 Mortlach.

This mortlach is the Cocoon (remember that film) of Whisky, still feisty with plenty to say for itself, an exceptional experience.

You can buy this dram now from Master of Malt

Many thanks to Steve from The Whisky Wire and to Gordon and MacPhail for including me on this Tweet Tasting.

 

Lots and lots softly going on waxy, industrial soft caramel and red berries, nutty, sweet but has the herb factor with hints of fennel like a whisky aramoatherapy treatment, herbs spices, but still lovely sweetness, hints of malty sweet notes developing also

malty fruits followed by hints of smoke, becomes bigger and meatier with slighty sweet BBQ a real big hitter

Sweet, malty, bbq, yum

Bottle Name: Mortlach 1954 Rare Vintage (Gordon and MacPhail)
Age: 1954 Vintage
ABV: 43.00
Distiller: Mortlach
Bottler: Gordon & MacPhail
Type: Single Malt
From: Scotland, Speyside


Smiths Glenlivet 1974 Rare Vintage (Gordon and MacPhail)

Smiths Glenlivet 1974 Rare Vintage (Gordon and MacPhail) Yet another for me to try from the Gordon and MacPhail Wood Makes the Whisky campaign is this 1974 Vintage Glenlivet which is a seriously exciting thought trying a dram distilled a year before my birth.

There's not a huge amount of independent bottlings of Glenlivet out there so in always keen to try some and especially ones of this age.

This is delicious, drama of this vintage are full of sweetness and dusty waxy furniture notes and this is no exception, seriously tasty stuff and I will be hunting out a bottle of this or raking for this on auctions.

Thanks to Gordon and MacPhail for the official sample.

 

This is what you expect from a dusty old sherry cask, it's dusty but not fun age warehouse dusty, hints of old mahogany furniture covered with a beeswax furniture polish, raisins and sultanas soaked in sherry and gentle fresh apricot slices, waxy citrus peel and plum skins.

Waxy sweet citrus fruits and gentle fruity pineapple, sherry soaked dried fruits, apricot and prunes, hints of spiced plums and dusty mahogany furniture, very tasty indeed

Spicy, waxy and very long lasting in the mouth

Bottle Name: Smiths Glenlivet 1974 Rare Vintage (Gordon and MacPhail)
Age: 1974 Vintage
ABV: 43.00
Distiller: Glenlivet
Bottler: Gordon & MacPhail
Type: Single Malt
From: Scotland, Speyside


Strathisla 1965 Rare Vintage (Gordon and MacPhail)

Strathisla 1965 Rare Vintage (Gordon and MacPhail) The penultimate dram on this Gordon and MacPhail Rare Vintages Tweet Tasting from The Whisky Wire was this 1965 Strathisla.

Sweet, fruity, toffee'd this is a delicious dram, the finish is unusual with what i can only describe as sweet butter lemons, if you can imagine that also.

You can buy this dram now from The Whisky Exchange

Many thanks to Steve from The Whisky Wire and to Gordon and MacPhail for including me on this Tweet Tasting.

 

Big sweet toffee softening fruit with a hint of polish, develops into strong sherry notes of plums, raisins and apples, then some dates and a hint of malteasers.

sweet sweet sweet at first sip, followed by a nice warm alcohol fruits and sherry, sweetness but an underlying cough medicine taste as well

dry, clean with a long lingering taste of sweet butter lemons 9if there was such a thing)

Bottle Name: Strathisla 1965 Rare Vintage (Gordon and MacPhail)
Age: 1965 Vintage
ABV: 43.00
Distiller: Strathisla
Bottler: Gordon & MacPhail
Type: Single Malt
From: Scotland, Speyside


Related Articles

Balblair 2003 Vintage
Balblair 1985 Rare Vintage (Gordon and MacPhail)
Mortlach 1954 Rare Vintage (Gordon and MacPhail)
Strathisla 1965 Rare Vintage (Gordon and MacPhail)
Glen Grant 1966 Rare Vintage (Gordon and MacPhail)

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