As mentioned a couple of weeks ago, Old Pulteney have had something of a reboot. This new collection signals an evolution for the brand, with a renewed vigour around the maritime malt yet staying true to Old Pulteney’s rich heritage and traditions. This introduction supports a wider drive to ensure strong consumer relevance and appeal, with the new whiskies consistent with the renowned house style and provenance; yet bringing some new flavours to the fore. Completing the new portfolio is this 18-year-old expression that takes its character and colour entirely from the American oak casks and Spanish sherry butts in which it has been nurtured, delivering a deep amber colour. This indulgent and deeply warming expression features notes of chocolate and spice, but allow for the influence of more vibrant, zesty flavours.
On the nose: you’ll get an invitingly fresh waft of pears, followed by butterscotch, vanilla, raisins, and salty caramel. These initial notes are closely followed by a vibrant zesty note, as well as sherbet. Spicy notes of start anise, fennel seeds and nutmeg start to appear. Completing the palate are notes of lemon grass, smoke and a hint of rosemary. On the palate: you’ll get a lovely sweet taste of pears, raisins and stewed fruits, as well as those zesty notes and a more pronounced smoky note. Those salty caramel notes start to appear, alongside spicy notes of white pepper and cinnamon. Notes of bitter dark chocolate start to emerge, as well as coffee. Rounding off the palate are notes of nutty oak, mint, with a hint of green herbs and butter. The finish: is long, zesty, peppery and salty, with lingering notes of smoke and oak.
The verdict: I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again; I do quite enjoy a dram of Old Pulteney, easy to drink with tonnes of enjoyable flavour, with its signature saltiness. This 18yo drop, has loads of character and is punchy from the outset. It’s nicely balance with those zest notes, which nicely interact with the fruitier and spicier notes. Bottled at an ABV of 46%, in my opinion, it doesn’t require any water in my opinion. However, I’d suggestion you try it without water and then gauge if any is required to suit your palate.
Old Pulteney 18 Year Old Single Malt Scotch Whisky can be found online or in-store at any well-stocked whisky shop for approximately £115.
For more information on Old Pulteney’s Single Malt Scotch, check out their official website.