In addition to the ever growing wealth of whisky shows and fests that have popped up over the last few years, the whisky calendar is now also well and truly firmed up with a plethora of annual releases from brands launching premium priced, non-core range expressions that have either been uniquely aged, finished or are experimental in some way.
From Special Releases to Committee bottlings, these highly
anticipated and limited in number offerings, provide pieces of liquid distillery
history to enthusiasts and collectors alike, or sadly but in thankfully lesser
numbers, whisky auction fodder for those wanting to make a quick buck.
The annual releases roll into action each January, with the
more experimentally focussed Private Edition series launch from The
Glenmorangie. Where to date different wine finishes, barley types, cask
management and the traditional use of peat have been used to create some truly
exciting and enticing drops of dramspankage.
This year and as ever with Dr Bill Lumsden, Glenmorangie’s
Head of Distilling & Whisky Creation at the helm, the 7th bottling in the
series was recently launched, in the form of The Glenmorangie Milsean. A
non-age statement (NAS) bottling, which takes its name from the Gaelic for
'Sweet Things' and is essentially their 10 Year Old Original expression, that has been
extra-matured in heavily toasted Portuguese red wine casks.
The nose kicks off with a colossal candy cavalcade of cherry
drops, pineapple cubes, dolly mixtures, lemon sherbets, coconut ice and all the
strawberry chocolate fondants from a box of Quality Street. Followed by a big wondrous
wedge of summer pudding, drenched in cold Ambrosia custard.
Orange zest, granny smith apples and a medley of fresh
tropical fruit, infused with tobacco leaf and black pepper make for the next
set of nasal niceties, along with ready rolled icing, vanilla fudge, sugared
almonds and something rather ravishingly bourbon-esque.
The palate dishes up and delivers all the promises that were
made on the nose, with all the organised calorific candy commotion balancing
out and evolving into a wealth of more five a day friendly dried fruits, assorted
citrus peels and maraschino cherries.
Warm treacle tart, oven baked bananas and a buttered slice
of Jamaican fruit bun then make for the next trio of palatable pleasures, along
with cinnamon sticks, ground black pepper and oodles of opulent and charismatic
Just as an athlete would aim to deliver his or her best in
all parts of a triathlon, this candy-copia of a dram is as tenaciously
triumphant on the nose, palate and on its lush linger-ette of a finish, in this
All in all, this latest release is a superb new addition to the Private
Edition series. But the real highlights and heroes that stand out during every savouring sip,
are the rich and robust, feisty and fruity Glenmorangie distillery signature style of notes, which this dramspanker exudes effortlessly in
So if Milsean stretches the boundaries of your budget (RRP £75.99) I urge you to
try or revisit the Glenmorangie 10 Year Old Original (RRP £29.99) to experience and appreciate a true cracking
corker of a core range classic.