Deanston 15yo Tequila Cask Finish & Deanston Dragon’s Milk


We're looking at two releases from Deanston today, with some funky cask finishes that we don't see very often.

    Deanston 15yo Tequila Cask Finish

    Region: Highland

    ABV: 52.2%

    Price: £90.00

    This special release was matured in oak hogsheads and finished before finishing in casks that once held Agave Tequila from the Jaliscan Highlands, Mexico.

    Nose

    The nose opens with yeast, porridge oats, agave, lucky charms, pineapple and lime juice. Giving it a little reveals three day old Pinot Gris, pears, and toasted watermelon. There’s a nuttiness’s here we’re going to say is cashew nuts and candied walnuts. If we’re being honest it’s not our favourite nose, and we’re unconvinced the finish has really added anything appealing.

    Palate

    The palate opens with oranges, grapefruit bitterness, apple strudel, and a little treacle and caramel. The sweeter notes along with lots of warm cinnamon spice linger on a decent length finish. There’s a slight oiliness to the mouthfeel that we enjoy, but overall it’s a a touch disappointing. As we sit with it we start to notice an agave note..

    Nose (with water)

    Reduced, it's like we dumped a ton of caramel into our porridge along with some cashews, actually make that a Mr Tom Bar. A lot of the sweeter fruit notes have disappeared, but so has the yeastiness. It’s also developed a slight floral note as it sits in the glass. We prefer the nose diluted.

    Palate (with water)

    Reduced, we find this less bitter, but a little spicer and unfortunately it’s lost the oiliness we enjoyed. The spice is like fresh ginger mixed in with cinnamon. There’s also a hint of sour lime now. It’s actually very citric forward now with a touch of tobacco. The finish remains a good length.

    Conclusion

    it’s not a terrible whisky and there some noticeable tequila flavours shining the here. Some will no doubt enjoy this more than us, but l we’re not a fan of the finish on this one. We’ll go with a 6/10.

    Score: 6/10

    Value

    It’s not a terrible price given the age, but there’s much better ways to spend your pennies.

    Deanston Dragon’s Milk

    Region: Highland

    ABV: 50.5%

    Price: £45.00

    Distilled in 2012, this was initially matured in re-charred whisky casks, before being finished in Dragon's Milk stout casks.

    Nose

    We’re not sure we’re getting a huge amount of Stout cask influence on the nose and finding this quite light and delicate. There is however notes of milk chocolate, vanilla essence, crème anglaise, warmer butter, cream roses, and candy cane sticks. It’s got good alcohol integration. Going back there’s also brown sugar, a hint of earthiness, red apples and freshly picked cherries.

    Palate

    It’s less delicate on the palate with notes of digestive biscuits, runny honey, custard tart, dark chocolate, gingerbread, and warming cracked black pepper spice. The spice lingers on for a good length. The palate falls into the spicy and dry category if it were an SMWS release. It has a decent mouthfeel a which is a little more oily than the tequila finish.

    Nose (with water)

    Reduction brings out golden syrup, molasses, a touch of dirt/tree bark, and pink lady apples. We’re also getting the digestive biscuits from the palate that start to appear on the nose. We prefer the nose with a few drops of water.

    Palate (with water)

    Reduced we’re finding this is more savoury, there’s ginger nuts, mixed herbs and more digestive biscuits. It’s a little less oily, but it’s also less spicy on the finish with that honey lingering. The dram has shifted to be more spicy and sweet now.

    Conclusion

    We quite enjoyed this with water and found more of the savoury notes we would associate with stout started to come through. We wouldn’t personally buy a bottle, but we’d take another dram. 

    Score: 6.5/10

    Value

    It’s over 50% ABV and under £50. Not bad at all.

    • 10 - Perfection. One in a million
    • 9 - Outstanding. Exceptional whisky.
    • 8 - Great. Would seek this out.
    • 7 - Good. Quality whisky.
    • 6 - Above average. Happy to have a dram.
    • 5 - Average. Drinkable whisky.
    • 4 - Below average. Passable.
    • 3 - Flawed. Noticeable negatives.
    • 2 - Defective. Significant faults.
    • 1 - Offensive. Pour it out.

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