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Bladnoch distillery has had something of a mixed history: for a while, it was an important part of the best-selling Bell’s blend, to the extent that they built a visitor centre at the distillery. But it has also suffered more than a few periods of closure, including a total decommissioning in the early 90s. For much of its recent history, the distillery was more of a tourist attraction than distillery.
Thankfully, Bladnoch is back to its best. The distillery was restored to its former glory by David Prior, an entrepreneur from Melbourne who purchased it in 2015. Production restarted a few years later, but existing stocks of whisky meant that Bladnoch could immediately begin bottling and releasing delicious drams, including this one, a stunningly mature Lowlander.
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Fresh red wine and cranberry juice aromas greet the drinker, followed by a wave of jammy red berries, dark chocolate and toasted oak.
Initial flavours of intense wine tannins, polished oak, and aniseed give way to reveal a concentrated malt note, marmalade, a little floral honey and some creamy nutmeg.
Exceedingly long with delightful drying oak, lingering leather, dried apricots, sultanas and some brown sugar.