Longrow Red 11yo Tawny Port Casks (2022 Release)


We’re ending the week with a visit to Campbeltown’s most famous distillery to try the latest Longrow Red release.

Longrow Red 11yo Tawny Port Casks (2022 Release)

Region: Campbeltown

ABV: 57.5%

Price: £73.00

The latest Longrow Red was matured for 11 years in total, with the first 7 of those being spent in bourbon barrels, before the whisky was additionally matured for 4 years in fresh Tawny port barrels. It was released November 2022, and 8,400 bottles were made available. Even at that number it was only fractionally easier to get a bottle of this than it would be a hens tooth.

We also can’t but help notice this release is a year older than the recent Springbank PX release and £20 cheaper. Hopefully, the Longrow Red releases stay at the distillery’s usually low prices.

Nose

Dunnage warehouse funk, red currants and double cream dominate the nose. Taking a second sniff reveals kiln smoke, Robinson's summer fruits cordial, buttered bread and an ashy note towards the end. Leaving it in the glass reveals earth, coastal sea air, strawberry jam, and a musty / dustiness. Unlike the Springbank PX we tried earlier this week the “Campbeltown Funk” is much more noticeable right off the bat. It really doesn’t nose it’s ABV and we’d have guessed this was closer to 46%.

Palate

On our initial sip we find the palate has a pleasant combination of smoke, sweet red fruits e.g cranberries, grapes, watermelon, and blackcurrants. There’s a cracked black pepper spice that lingers on along with earthy peat, and red fruit sweetness on a good length finish. A touch spicy, but it’s nothing off putting. We’re not noticing as much peat on this as we usually get with other Longrow releases, but we don’t necessarily consider this a bad thing. Going back to it we notice that Campbeltown funk and Maraschino cherries. It’s got a good mouthfeel which is both oily and syrupy with a texture to it that reminds us of a treacle lollipop.

Nose (with water)

A little reduction opens this up and we’re getting a few additional notes such as chocolate, and cigarette ash, but most the original notes are still here... just as prominent as they were pre dilution. We’re finding the most dominant notes now are the earthy smoke, Campbeltown funk and strawberry jam.

Palate (with water)

Reduction has pushed the smoke into the background, and there’s now a more prominent vin santo note, along with honey. It’s significantly sweeter than it was pre dilution with the red fruit notes dominating. Mouthfeel remains good, just perhaps not as syrupy. The sweetness carries through to a good length finish, and we’re finding there’s also a spicy note of mustard mixing with the honeyed sweetness that's sticking around.

Conclusion

It's got a good nose and a tasty palate. Both of which hold up well to water, but yet it’s missing something for us. We can’t offer much criticism to this as it’s a well made whisky, it’s obviously good stuff, and we’re sure some people will absolutely love this, but for us it falls short. It’s just not as good as some of the other Longrow Red releases. At £73 we’ll give this 8/10, but for others it’ll probably be nearer 8.5/10, assuming that is you enjoy these wine cask releases. If you’re one of the people who have hated previous releases we doubt you’ll find yourself loving this.

For anyone who is interested here’s our rankings of all the Longrow Red releases we’ve reviewed thus far:

 

Score: 8/10 

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  • 10 - Perfection. A whisky that we’ll remember forever.
  • 9 - Amazing. We’d pay through the nose for a bottle.
  • 8 - Great. Pick this up at RRP.
  • 7 - Good. Happy to have a dram or two but wouldn’t buy a bottle.
  • 6 - Passable. Would accept a dram, but wouldn’t seek it out.
  • 5 - Poor. Would drink if it was the only option.
  • 4 - Bad. Maybe it can be saved by ginger beer?
  • 3 - Awful. It can't be saved by ginger beer.
  • 2 - Pour it out
  • 1 - We’ve never tried a whisky rated this low and hopefully never will.

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