As the year comes to an end, it looks mandatory for any blog site to come up with a ‘Best of’ post. So to keep the tradition up and prevent any kind of whisky apocalypse from happening, we decided to recap our favorite whiskies of 2017.
This year has been great for most of the enthusiasts. Most of the new expressions released by the distilleries came with different and intriguing background stories. Some editions offered experimental and new approaches to whisky whereas others kept their traditional ways. Below, you can find our selection of 6 new bottles, all released in 2017, that we enjoyed very much.
We also would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our friends for following us and wish you another fantastic year in 2018.
Early this year Glenmorangie released the eight expression, Glenmorangie Bacalta, to be added to its‘s special and limited product line ‘Private Edition Releases’. According to the information, the inspiration for this particular whisky came from a former Glenmorangie Core Expression from the 2000’s – Madeira Wood Finished. Glenmorangie Bacalta was initially crafted from spirits matured in Ex-Bourbon casks, before being transferred into special American Oak Barrels, that are heavily-toasted and seasoned with Malsmey Wine, for finishing. The result was a great bottle of whisky which offered a soft and sweet drinking experience.
Springbank 11 Year Old Local Barley
Original Springbank Local Barley editions were famous in mid-1990’s to early 2000’s for their extraordinary quality back. These expressions were made using local barley sourced from nearby farms around the distiller’s location in Campbeltown. In 2016, after almost 20 years, Springbank Distillery brought back the series with ‘Springbank 16 Year Old Local Barley‘. Earlier this year, the second expression, Springbank 11 Year Old Local Barley, was released. Although younger than its predecessor, this new edition still managed to deliver the ‘bottle of desire’ soul.
Cadenhead’s Caperdonich 39 Year Old
This year, Cadenhead’s, Scotland’s oldest independent bottler, celebrated its 175th anniversary and released some rare single casks fillings to commemorate the special occasion. One of the bottles belonging to the ‘Lost Distilleries’ line up was this gem from the, now closed, Caperdonich distillery. The spirit that formed the hearth of this expression was distilled in 1977 and the whole maturation took place in a single Sherry butt for a bit over 39 years. The final yield was just 462 bottles.
Signatory Glenlivet 10 Year Old TWE Exclusive
The nicest surprise for us this year was this ‘Single Cask’ filling from Signatory which was ‘hand-picked’ by The Whisky Exchange for an exclusive bottle. Original spirit came from The Glenlivet distillery and it spent 10 years in a single first fill sherry cask for maturation. It was a prime example of a ‘Sherry Bomb’ which came with a whopping 67.1% ABV. Unfortunately, this beauty was limited to just 312 bottles and went extinct in a very short period of time.
Yamazaki 18 Year Old Mizunara Cask
For more than three generations, the master blenders at Suntory Whisky, the founding house of Japanese Whisky, have devoted themselves to pursuing the harmony of Japanese nature and craftsmanship. One of the most impressive examples of this pursuit is found in Mizunara, the Japanese oak. In his pursuit of true “Mizunara-ness,” Suntory’s Chief Blender, Shinji Fukuyo tasted a few hundred Mizunara whiskies and made selections with varying ages, from 18 years old and beyond. A very small portion exceed even 50 years of maturation, which give this limited edition an incomparable depth and a flavor that lingers long after the liquid has passed the lips.
When Collectivum XXVIII came out in 2017, it was the first ever blended malt whisky to be included in Diageo’s Special Release lineup. It was added as the tenth expression to the 2017 lineup and surprised a lot of enthusiasts. The name Collectivum comes from the Latin word ‘collectīvus’ meaning ‘collected or gathered together’ and XXVIII is the roman numerals for 28. The explains all, as this exclusive blend was crafted with using whiskies coming from all 28 operational single malt distilleries currently owned by Diageo.