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Best Port Ellen's

Do you have a 50 year old vintage waiting to be discovered by a worthy collector? Post your details here and find out!
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Best Port Ellen's

Postby Deactivated Member » Sun Sep 10, 2006 8:07 pm

Evening to all,

I tasted two Douglas Laing OMC Port Ellen's yesterday, a 19yo and a 20yo, both sherry-casked, both bottled as usual for OMC at 50%. The older was more enjoyable for me, and had fanastic nose of smoke mixed with vanilla and sweetness derived no doubt from the sherry wood. The palate of the 19yo was a tad too explosive to my liking, and interestingly the dry wood flavours at the finish were far more present than in the older one. The 20yo was full of refined smokiness, with just the right amount of sweetness with flavours of nutmeg and pepper mixing in - it was an absolutely delightful dram.

Any favorite Port Ellen's anyone care's to share, from what's available now or from yesterdays' selections? I must admit to knowing very little actually of this least known Islay whisky.
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Postby Frodo » Sun Sep 10, 2006 10:31 pm

I've only ever had a 1979 OMC sherry refill cask and the 3rd release PE's. The OMC was more complex and therefore I liked it more, but not by much.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Mon Sep 11, 2006 1:48 pm

May I ask how old was the 1979 OMC in years please?

I gather the OMC Port Ellens are quite good.
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Postby Frodo » Thu Sep 14, 2006 9:14 pm

M.R.J. wrote:May I ask how old was the 1979 OMC in years please?

I gather the OMC Port Ellens are quite good.


Sorry I got it wrong - it was an '81 OMC although I can't remember when it was bottled. When I drop by the Summerhill store, I'll check.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Fri Sep 15, 2006 12:03 pm

Hello Frodo,

Thank you for taking part in this discussion. Perhaps to link this to collecting better, I am wondering which would be a more collectible P-E, the Douglas Laing Platinum selection bottling, or one of the OB releases in the opinion of forum readers? One is limited to few hundreds of bottles, but the other is OB.
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Postby irishwhiskeychaser » Fri Sep 15, 2006 12:11 pm

M.R.J. wrote:Hello Frodo,

Thank you for taking part in this discussion. Perhaps to link this to collecting better, I am wondering which would be a more collectible P-E, the Douglas Laing Platinum selection bottling, or one of the OB releases in the opinion of forum readers? One is limited to few hundreds of bottles, but the other is OB.



It depends on the availablity of the OB but in general OB's are far more collectable than IB's you just might have to wait a bit longer especially when you are talking about a closed distillery as every release is seen as limited. However the platinum series seem to fetch good prices after a few years when they are all sold out. I would plumb for the OB myself.

Anyway you should be collecting both :lol:
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Postby kildalton » Fri Sep 15, 2006 7:19 pm

Anyone's ever tried port ellen old malt cask 1976 25 y.o?
I've the choice to buy it but I don't know anything about the way it might taste...
Thanks
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Postby Wave » Fri Sep 15, 2006 8:06 pm

It depends on the availablity of the OB but in general OB's are far more collectable than IB's you just might have to wait a bit longer especially when you are talking about a closed distillery as every release is seen as limited. However the platinum series seem to fetch good prices after a few years when they are all sold out. I would plumb for the OB myself.

Anyway you should be collecting both


With only the funds for 1 PE atm I opted for the PE 6th Release of which I got a few days ago
but I'd love to get that newest Platinum series, it sure is a purty whisky! :lol:

Image



Cheers!
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Postby Whiskana » Sat Sep 16, 2006 11:28 am

Just received the Port Ellen DL OMC 25yo 1978/2004 50%, which was described in the Whisky Bible 2006 by Jim Murray as follows.

Nose 24p: This is prime PE: absolutely perfectly balanced peat, offering a mild sweetness that just sings with the oak-induced vanilla and sprig of lavender.

Taste 23p: Very few 25-year-olds can be so delicate on the palate; the peat, like the underlying barley is fragile yet the building medium roast Java coffee cannot dislodge it

Finish 23p: Lengthy, with a delicate sprinkling of Muscovado sugar helping to counter the formulating liquorice and strengthening coffee.

Overall balance and complexity 25p: One of those great whiskies you search for and rarely find. It has captured the gentle magnificence of PE that very few bottlings, not least because of a later downgrade in cask quality, are ever ever likely to again.

Total points: 95


When I finally have the perfect occasion to open this bottle I sincerely hope it is just as good for me as it obviously was for JM... :lol:

My previous PE was Signatory 1979 and that was not so great to be honest. Before that I sampled DL OMC 23yo sherry finish and it was OK (for a sherry finish), so I sold it to my brother... 8)
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Postby Deactivated Member » Sat Sep 16, 2006 3:42 pm

Do people generally prefer P-E as sherry casked or bourbon wood? I've only tasted sherry casked, so the comparison is beyond me..
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Postby Frodo » Sun Sep 17, 2006 1:15 am

I've had the 3rd release OB as well as an OMC from a refil sherry cask. I found both to be good, but in a pinch, I'd rather have a bourbon casked bottling. If I'm going to spend all that money on a PE, I'd rather have something where the distillery character comes through rather than something where this is hindered.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Mon Sep 18, 2006 1:15 pm

Hmm, does sherry casks hinder the distillery character so in case of Port Ellen? Isn't for example Lagavulin's best known version, the 16yo, quite sherry-matured whisky? Or Highland Park?

I would tend to agree if the question was of wood finished product, or a very exotic cask, but sherry and bourbon are the whisky norms.
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Postby Frodo » Mon Sep 18, 2006 8:09 pm

Lagavulin is a great example! The 16yr old is a top notch dram bar none in my opinion. However, I think the 12yr old shows off the distillery character better. It's not a better dram, just different.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Wed Sep 27, 2006 11:10 am

Out of the official "releases" of Port Ellen I've heard it being mentioned that the 1st and 4th are considered best in taste (all are quite collectable I gather).

1st release is already out of store selections, but the others are available here & there.

Have to wonder how these compared tot he excellent OMC bottlings..I've no experience in this matter personally, but it would be interesting to hear if anyone has made such luxorious comparisons.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Wed Sep 27, 2006 12:37 pm

kildalton wrote:Anyone's ever tried port ellen old malt cask 1976 25 y.o?
I've the choice to buy it but I don't know anything about the way it might taste...
Thanks

I tried a 1980 25yo OMC at the Whisky Fringe as was so impressed, I bought a bottle. But it isn't particularly peaty - more fruity and chocolatey. A bit like Ardbeg Kildalton. My notes were:

N: wildly druity, melon, pear, oranges, Christmas cake
T: elegant, perfumed, salty but some sweet chocolate
F: fruit and spice, almost Kildalton, teeny hint of smoke, dry, salty, dry smoke at the death

I also tried the Platinum bottling, but it tasted well over the hill (but it was the end of the day). My notes were:

N: smoke and sherry, dried fruits
T: malt but smoke kicks in, more dried fruit, polo mints
F: mint
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Postby Caledonians » Wed Sep 27, 2006 5:57 pm

M.R.J. wrote:Out of the official "releases" of Port Ellen I've heard it being mentioned that the 1st and 4th are considered best in taste (all are quite collectable I gather).


I actually heard that the 3th edition was considered the best. Maybe someone tasted all the different editions and can give us his reviews?
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Postby Wave » Wed Sep 27, 2006 6:06 pm

I've tried the first 5 editions, 2nd through the 5th are all very good but the 1st is pure heaven!

Anyone tasted the 6th yet?


Cheers!
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Postby mikeymad » Thu Sep 28, 2006 9:09 pm



I have not tried any of the new editions

From my whisky log:
Port Ellen 11yo (63.1%, Cadenhead, )
Port Ellen 14yo 1983 (56.9%, Scott's, bottled 1997)
Port Ellen 18yo 1982 (43%, Provenance, From Original bottle 82-01 )
Port Ellen 19yo 1979 (43%, Gordon & MacPhail, Cooper's Choice )
Port Ellen 21yo (46%, Provenance, )
Port Ellen 22yo 1976 (57%, Scott's, bottled 1998)
Port Ellen 22yo (43%, Hart Brothers, )
Port Ellen 24yo 1975 (43%, Signatory, )
Port Ellen 24yo 1978 (50%, Old Malt Cask, )
Port Ellen 24yo (56%, Adelphi, )
Port Ellen nas (43%, Signatory, 149/630)


The 1978 OMC was the top out of this lot followed by the Heart Brothers and then the little 11yo Cadenhead at one of the higher % I have had.
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Postby Whiskana » Thu Sep 28, 2006 9:34 pm

Just had the pleasure to try DL OMC 1978/2005 sherry finish. I sold this to my brother a while back and now I was able to taste it after a pepper steak dinner and apple pie.

Now, while I am not a lover of sherry monsters, this was VERY pleasant bottling with warming finish. Originally sold this because I was afraid of this "sherry finish" which was not mentioned when I bought it online.

Left me longing for more now...

This was probably the case of right dram at the right time; usually I like to "normal" bottlings better.
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