All too often I'm disappointed by oldies. I'm heading towards being past my own sell-by date, but I still can't help having a gentle surge of anticipation that something exciting is about to happen when I crack open a bottle of old stuff. Unfortunately, I feel let down more often than not. I guess we all know that sitting around in a cask for too long can be detrimental.
Last night, I certainly wasn't disappointed when I had the opportunity to try some Glencraig. This one: Clencraig, SMWS 104.12 34yo (distilled June 1974) 48.4%. Refill barrel 191 bottles. ”Angels on horseback”.
Now this is quite a spirit. Eyes and nose were treated to a deep golden colour and a wonderful meadow flowers perfumey nose, but with a touch of something loamy. Then a delicious evolution of flavours followed on the palate – vanilla, cream, custard, sweetness with oak and malty notes creeping in, and more floral perfume. A sublime soft finish that stayed long enough for me completed the experience nicely.
I tasted it without water first, then with a drop which I found dampened the experience! I then went back to no water for a couple of drams-worth. Don’t think that water adds any benefits to this malt, especially as the lowish abv caresses rather than slaps in the first place.
The angels on their horses were demonstrating the elegance of perfect dressage rather than galloping along a track.
What a lovely dram.