Greetings, so recently myself and some friends went to Dewar’s Distillery in Aberfeldy, Perthshire and went on a tour to see one of Scotland’s most historical whisky producing plants. This was my second visit but there were some nice new additions that I hadn’t had the pleasure of seeing before; a certain cask of whisky that was 32 years old (I would have sampled it but feel it would have been a large leap out of the price range I wish to explore). It was also an experience that was lead by our guide, Ross, who was exceedingly informative and made what had the potential to be a more low key tour into something quite special; 2 whisky tastings instead of the 1 advertised to be exact!
It is now the ‘silent season’ for Dewar’s which means they don’t distil any whisky from around now until the New Year (This definitely helped volume of noise even though there was no volume of whisky). This is due to important maintenance being carried out in the various parts of the distillery; stills being repaired, mill being cleaned and wash backs being replaced.
Show me the whisky…
Now you might be thinking well hold on, Dewar’s is a blend, and you would be perfectly right in thinking that. What we are more interested in, however, is the ‘heart malt’ of Dewar’s, namely, the Aberfeldy Single Malt (If you do appreciate a good blend though, the Dewar’s 12 year is very smooth, honeyed and a little nutty; a blend I would give a nod of approval to).
The Aberfeldy 12 year old is a whisky of subtle, sweet character with floral honeyed notes and a delicate maltiness hinting towards digestive biscuits. The colouration was nice and well balanced; not pale but just enough caramel shade to spark interest. It is quite a simple malt on the palate but one that has some good layers of flavour with clear definition on the various notes of honey, vanilla and malt with a suggestion of spiciness.
Back to the distillery itself…
Simply as a visitor attraction the distillery is very well situated and has a very nice cafe and whisky bar as well as a very informative museum and theatre.
Give Dewar’s their due, they have not only pioneered quality blends and enhanced Scotch as an industry but also crafted a quality single malt whisky that is versatile as both an ingredient of a blend but also a stand alone malt of character.
As a wee heads up…
I have scheduled an interview with a manager of the distillery and hope to get some insight into what it takes to work in a distillery that produces large volumes of whisky and one with such extensive heritage. This is the start of what I hope will be a series of feature distillery reviews which I hope will explore the places and people that influence some of the finest Scottish single malts.