Not a member? - Register and login now.
All registered users can read our entire magazine archive.

Whisky Glossary : Nose

Whisky Glossary and Definitions

Unlike wine, for example, whisky is not really about mystification, but it does bring its own jargon. Any unusual terms you are likely to come across are described and defined in this section.


Issue 153 Out Now

Whisky Magazine Issue 153

Cu Bocan | Highland Park | Jameson | Shelter Point | Tullibardine | Wyoming



The smell of a whisk(e)y.

With this issue Whisky Magazine celebrates its first anniversary. The birthday party will be held in New York because this issue also marks our arrival in the US, the largest consumer of whisky and wh...

October 1999, Issue 6, page 5

?Ramsay's handiwork
?Grouse shows its older colours

September 2013, Issue 114, page 78

A balance of tradition and efficiency (Speyburn)
Deanston Distillery is something of a hidden gem. Ian Buxton visited it

April 2006, Issue 55, page 26

A brave new world
Using his knowledge and passion for wine,whisky maker John Hall is creating one of the most iconic Canadian brands, Rob Allanson went to find out why.

November 2007, Issue 67, page 45

A choice dram
Tom Bruce-Gardyne meets one of single-cask bottling's real success stories, as Lorne Mackillop and his Mackillop's Choice label go from strength to strength

May 2002, Issue 22, page 48

A day in the life... (Richard Paterson)
Dave Broom follows JBB's Richard Paterson on a typical working day and learns much about blending, showbiz and living life at full pelt

July 2001, Issue 17, page 20

A Decade of Challenges
Martine Nouetheads to Sweden to find out what has been happening at the country's foremost distillery

February 2012, Issue 101, page 34

A decade of words
To mark our 10th anniversary we decided to dig into our archives and bring some of the wittiest, incisive and often poignant words from our two columnists, starting the late, great Michael Jackson.

November 2008, Issue 76, page 14

A dram online
Bruichladdich's Jim McEwan is set to bring his whisky tasting sessions into your home. Mike Gerrard reports

September 2003, Issue 33, page 23

A Fine Fino
Bowmore recently looked back at their collection of vintage casks and have released an extremely limited edition bottling from 1964, considered by many as the golden age in the distillery's history. ...

July 2012, Issue 105, page 7

A First for Europe
Johnnie Walker House opens at Schiphol Airport

July 2016, Issue 137, page 6

A fishy tale
In the latest in an occasional series of matching whisky with food, Dave Broom compares and contrasts some sushi-whisky combinations

October 2003, Issue 34, page 61

A Flavour Profile
We look at the range of flavours malt whisky offers, and ask how they develop and interact

January 2016, Issue 133, page 38

A future classic from a modern distillery
John Lamond visits the Isle of Arran Distilleryy, a modern distillery that produces a whisky that may well have enthusiasts challenging their own perception of what is their favourite malt

April 2001, Issue 15, page 28

A gem in the eye of a storm (Cardhu)
Say the word ‘Cardhu' and it stirs up images of underhand dealings. But the distillery intrinsically linked to last year's scandal is charming and impressive, and its staff outstanding. Ian Buxton r...

January 2005, Issue 45, page 30

A Heady Twist
Adding whisky to your recipe

July 2016, Issue 137, page 64

A Highland Queen
A Custodian Collection from Tullibardine

January 2016, Issue 133, page 29

A Late Summer Read
Recently published whisky related books

September 2016, Issue 138, page 65

A life under sail
Dave Broom talks about the ocean wave, true grit,determination and a good drop of malt with one of Britain's most iconic maritime explorers.

June 2009, Issue 80, page 24

A Liquid Legacy
Gordon & MacPhail may be the guardians of whisky’s history, but they’re safeguarding its future too

November 2017, Issue 147, page 30

A Locavore's Tipple
Liza Weisstuch goes in search of slow food whiskey

February 2013, Issue 109, page 34

A lord among malts (Glenrothes)
Glenrothes has a formidable reputation as a single malt and is a key component in the internationally renowned Cutty Sark. Tom Bruce-Gardyne visited the distillery

December 2003, Issue 36, page 42

A matter of art in a glass
What makes a great blend,and why do the biggest brands command such loyalty? Ian Buxton reports

October 2005, Issue 51, page 22

A matter of taste
It seemed like a good idea, and in the end the event turned into a great evening's tasting with some interesting company, cracking spirits and one belter of a cigar. Rob Allanson Reports

June 2008, Issue 72, page 42

A midsummer night's dreeam
Martine Nouet finds whiskies that lend themselves to teh warm, care free days of summer and creates a refreshing menu to accompany them

June 2001, Issue 16, page 36

A new frontier
Jonathan McCormick looks at selling bourbon to the Scots.

January 2009, Issue 77, page 20

A New Malt is Born
Isle of Harris Distillery fills its first casks

March 2016, Issue 134, page 6

A new relationship
Beer guru Roger Protz looks at some oak aged beers on the market

December 2010, Issue 92, page 58

A pairing challenge
In response to Davin de Kergommeauxís column in the last edition, the chocolate reviewer muses about pairing whisky and chocolate

April 2018, Issue 150, page 64

A perfumed world
Dave Broom explores the sensory experience of incense.

June 2010, Issue 88, page 20

A Polish Surprise
In search of some elusive Polish Whisky

December 2013, Issue 116, page 42

A rare breed (Wild Turkey)
Wild Turkey is an old-fashioned American spirit, full of character, with an ability to seduce all-comers. Stuart Maclean-Ramsay pays his respects.

April 2000, Issue 9, page 38

A Real Revival
Ian Buxton looks at the resurrection of a distillery

July 2012, Issue 105, page 34

A right pair
Is whisky really suited to food? Ontario-based writer Andrew Coppolino finds out

August 2006, Issue 58, page 42

A salt on the senses
Can you taste salt in whisky? Many say of course you can, but the suggestion incenses others. Peter Woodsputs the case against

June 2003, Issue 31, page 82



Bunnahabhain 18 Years Old
Single Malt - Scotland - 46.30%
8 On the oak side but with depth and distinction.

BenRiach Solstice 15 Years Old
Single Malt - Scotland - 50.00%
8 A somewhat lurid colour, but this is an extremely sound and stylish BenRiach with an integration not often seen in finished whiskies.

BenRiach 16 Years Old 1995 Cask 7164
Single Malt - Scotland - 58.30%
8 This whisky is oak dominated. Too much for me as we have lost the distillery character, but the nose is expressive. Beware of water, it kills it.

Whisky Magazine - Recommended - Winner

Scotch Malt Whisky Society 7.51 Longmorn Sweet, Rich & Fruity 1984 26 Years Old
Single Malt - Scotland - 57.40%
8 Balanced and fine. Worth a look.

Bunnahabhain 25 Years Old
Single Malt - Scotland - 46.30%
8 The nose lets you expect sweeter notes. The palate is a bit disappointing.

Scotch Malt Whisky Society 66.27 Foodie Dram
Single Malt - Scotland - 52.30%
7 The nose is richer than the palate. Seems a bit uncoordinated,like a young untamed horse.

BenRiach Dark Rum Finish
Single Malt - Scotland - 46.00%
7 A cheery dram, opening up on the sunny side with definite rum colours on the nose. A dash of water sweetens the palate.

Whisky Magazine - Recommended - Winner

Scotch Malt Whisky Society 33.70 Ardbeg Keith Richards meets Socrates 1998 10 Years Old
Single Malt - Scotland - 57.30%
7 An effusively phenolic smouldering hulk. Recommended.

BenRiach Horizons 12 Years Old
Single Malt - Scotland - 50.00%
7 Triple distillation heightens the aromatics though can't really see the oloroso influence.

Scotch Malt Whisky Society 120.4 Tibetan Joss-Sticks and Polynesian Pork 1990 18 Years Old
Single Malt - Japan - 59.30%
7 The nose is a delight. To enjoy the palate,you have to be a wood freak.

Scotch Malt Whisky Society 97.11 Littlemill 18 Years Old
Single Malt - Scotland - 56.00%
7 Lovely balance. A slow sipper.

Whisky Magazine - Best Buy - Winner

Bunnahabhain 12 Years Old
Single Malt - Scotland - 46.30%
7 What was already a very fine (if underrated) 12yo has been given greater depth with a bump up in strength and non chill filtering. It's now one of the best on the market.

Glengoyne 14 Years Old
Single Malt - Scotland - 40.00%
7 Just get the feeling that bottling at a slightly higher strength might have given it the kick it needs for the palate to balance the nose.

Bunnahabhain Manzanilla Sherry Wood 16 Years Old
Single Malt - Scotland - 53.20%
7 Well controlled. Wood just coming into play and despite the sulphur it's a pleasing light,sweet spirit.

Glengoyne 1972
Single Malt - Scotland - 46.00%
7 Amazingly fresh for such an oldie. Much prefer this style of Glengoyne to the sherried monsters which tend to drown the distillery character.

Glengoyne Burnfoot
- Scotland - 40.00%
7 Just a little thin and lacking in substance

BenRiach 16 Years Old 1993 Claret Wood
Single Malt - Scotland - 46.00%
7 Pleasant, but the burnt wood knocks it back.

Bunnahabhain 14 Years Old Port Finish
Single Malt - Scotland - 53.00%
7 Front-loaded, clumsy and forced. Bunna's good enough on its own.

Scotch Malt Whisky Society 64.17 Mannochmore Oozes Juiciness 1992 16 Years Old
Single Malt - Scotland - 54.70%
7 Don't water. Decent aperitif dram.

Scotch Malt Whisky Society 27.72 Springbank Harbour-side Harmonies
Single Malt - Scotland - 57.30%
7 Lacks integration.

Scotch Malt Whisky Society 93.33 Glen Scotia Pine sap and black pepper 1992 16 Years Old
Single Malt - Scotland - 64.30%
6 Like Dr Jekyll it's trying to escape from its alter ego,but Hyde wins out.

Whisky Magazine - Editors Choice - Winner

Tullibardine 1970
Single Malt - Scotland - 40.50%
9 Balanced and mature. Just how a sherry cask should be.

Whisky Magazine - Editors Choice - Winner

Corsair Triple Smoke Single Barrel Distiller Select
Single Malt - U.S.A. - 67.50%
9 It's a love or hate whisky and I love it.

Whisky Magazine - Editors Choice - Winner

Lombard Jewels of Scotland Brora 1982 Cask #876
Single Malt - Scotland - 46.10%
9 A classic American oak aged, mature Highland Malt.

Highland Park 1977 Bicentenary Vintage Reserve
Single Malt - Scotland - 46.00%
9 My favourite expression of whisky's greatest all rounder. Sets an incredibly high standard for Highland Park to maintain.

Whisky Magazine - Recommended - Winner

Scotch Malt Whisky Society 9 Years Old, Millennium Malt
Single Malt - Scotland - 58.10%
9 Frighteningly good. Godzilla is alive and well and living in Campbeltown.

Whisky Magazine - Editors Choice - Winner

Paul John Indian Single Malt Select Cask Peated
Single Malt - India - 55.50%
9 It doesn't matter where it comes from, but great whisky is still great whisky.

Whisky Magazine - Editors Choice - Winner

Black Bull 40 Years Old Batch No. 2
Blended - Scotland - 41.90%
9 A pure beauty. The age without the wrinkles...

Whisky Magazine - Recommended - Winner

Ardbeg 1976, Distillery Manager's Choice
Single Malt - Scotland - 56.00%
9 Real Ardbeg peatiness and smokiness.

Whisky Magazine - Editors Choice - Winner

Glencadam 19 Years Old Oloroso Sherry Cask Finish
Single Malt - Scotland - 46.00%
9 Whisky like this makes tasting an absolute pleasure.

Whisky Magazine - Editors Choice - Winner

Highland Park 18 Years Old
Single Malt - Scotland - 43.00%
9 If I smoked I would have a cigar with this one.

World Whiskies Awards 2009 - World's Best New Release - Winner Whisky Magazine - Editors Choice - Winner

Highland Park 40 Years Old
- Scotland - 48.30%
9 A stunningly great whisky. One of the finest I've had for a considerable time.

Whisky Magazine - Recommended - Winner

Lombard Single Malt Springbank 1965
Single Malt - Scotland - 46.00%
9 This can only come from one distillery in Scotland. Unique and stunning!

Whisky Magazine - Editors Choice - Winner

The Macallan 1961 Vintage
Single Malt - Scotland - 54.70%
9 This one I loved. The flavours have melded beautifully, in what must have been an excellent cask.

Whisky Magazine - Recommended - Winner

The Macallan 50 Years Old, Millennium Decanter
Single Malt - Scotland - 0.00%
9 This is on the woody side. A little too woody for me in its late astringency, but it is always a privilege to taste such old whiskies.



Whisky gift and present finder