Friday, October 15, 2010

Dalmore and the £1300 malt

We've bought a bit of Dalmore through a wholesaler in the last twelve months, and it's been relatively well received but because of a few movements in agencies we're going to be able to buy direct from Whyte and Mackay (so we'll get to offer Jura at decent prices too) and the rep popped in to talk to us about Dalmore and let us taste the range. Because we wholesale on a reasonable scale and will look to take W&M's basic blend and Vladivar vodka for that market our rep looks after cash and carry customers almost exclusively so for him we're an interesting distraction.

So we got to taste through the malts, the vial of 12 in his little pack was empty but we did get to try the 15, Gran Reserva, 1973, King Alexander III and 40 year old (which retails between £1300 and £1400).
What was really interesting for me, a relative novice to all things malt (despite buying the things - this is done more with commercial acumen than with huge amounts of knowledge) was that despite being sherry cask matured these were not massive rich, sweet malts. Far from it, yes they hinted at richness but there was a level of refinement and complexity that was just stunning. For me I loved the 40 year old (of course) but I also really dug the Grand Reserva. This used to be called the Cigar Malt and it's easy to see why but political powers made it foolish to continue to brand the whisky in this way so the liquid is the same but the name has changed.
Having tasted the range, I now hope that I'll be able to do a Dalmore tasting for Burns Night in Banbury with some of our customers - we probably won't get to try the 40, unless someone is feeling very generous to our cause but it should still be a terrific night.

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