By Richard Thomas
This third and last look at the Wemyss Midsummer Single Cask 2016 release is a 1991 vintage Blair Athol whisky, bottled in 2015. So, it’s a 24 year old single malt, aged in an ex-bourbon barrel.
Some describe Blair Athol as among Scotland’s oldest distilleries, pointing to a foundation in 1798. However, that distillery was soon closed, and the new foundation in 1825 is the one that continues to this day. Now owned by Diageo, much of the distillery’s production goes into Bell’s, and while there are some bottlings from the distillery itself, this is one of those names that you are much more likely to encounter from an independent bottler like Wemyss. This particular Blair Athol barrel yielded 312 barrels at 46% ABV.
The whisky has the expected barrel-derived golden white wine appearance, and the nose is a square hit on the title: pears up front, seasoned with pie spices and tinged with wood. The flavor follows from there, with an apple and pear pie sweetness, tinged with wood. The nuttiness yielded itself less in the taste and more in the texture, I think. The finish moves into sweet tobacco, and runs warm.
Expect to pay about €140/£120/$155 for this whisky.