Two independently bottled Mannochmore's today, both 12 years old.
Red Cask Co. Mannochmore 12yo (cask #5875)
Distilled in 2009, this expression spent twelve years in a single first fill sherry hogshead, before being released in an outturn of 260 bottles.
Initially we’re getting some strawberry jam, toffee, red cola and cola cubes. Giving it some air and we get some black pepper, vanilla and fruit cake. There’s a bit too much ethanol on the nose for us, but if you push past that it’s pretty pleasant.
Raisins are the dominant note on the palate, but if you give it sometime you can also pick out some sweet toffee apple, and tobacco. There’s also an ashy / burnt note here that could trick us into thinking this was lightly peated. There’s a little alcohol tingle on the finish, but it’s slight and we’re not complaining. It looks a little light for having spent 12 years in sherry, but there’s a decent amount of cask influence here.
Nose (with water)
With water we’ve lost the the fruity notes, but traded them for some chocolate sauce, treacle, toffee brittle, salted caramel sauce and caramac bar. Water has also extinguished the malt / ethanol note on the undiluted nose. We prefer the nose with a splash of water.
Palate (with water)
Unfortunately, we’re less fans of the palate with water. We’re now getting dark chocolate covered coffee beans on the palate, but they are a touch too bitter for us. The alcohol also feels a little unbalanced now with more of an alcohol burn. Like the nose we’re getting more synthetic sugar showing as notes of caramel sundae.
Without water this is a good dram. Water takes the nose to the next level, but ruins the palate for. If this was cheaper we’d give it a higher rating, but at the RRP it’s hard to give it anymore than a 7/10. We will say a few people trying this thought it was a bourbon cask that was given a good length finish, and if you’re looking for a sherry bomb you may want to look elsewhere.
Watt Whisky Mannachmore 12yo
This Mannochmore was distilled in 2008 and matured in a pair of bourbon hogsheads for 12 years before a short finish in an ex-brandy butt for three months. It was bottled in 2020 with 663 bottles released.
There’s an initial hint of raisins that may fool you into thinking this was finished in sherry. Next there’s some grape juice, red berries, apples and honey. Going back to it after some air and we can also pick out some sour maraschino cherries and golden syrup. It’s a fruity nose that shows some promise.
The palate is showing similar fruit notes like the nose. There’s sweet red berries, cranberries and cherries. No actually it’s sour cherry gummy sweets. There’s also some notes of ginger and chilli spice leading / lingering on a long finish. Its a touch hot but there’s also a fair amount of sweetness to balance this out.
Nose (with water)
The water has made this dram very citrus forward, and the group are picking out notes such as of orange cream sweeties and orange peel. Going back to it and theres also a little tobacco and grapefruit.
Palate (with water)
The water has really beefed up the heat, but there’s still a lot of sweetness. It’s just now more of a sugar syrup, and less fruity sweetness. Its nicely mouth coating, but there’s a lot of ginger spice heat on the finish that remains on the tongue after the sweetness has disappeared.
We’ve mentioned recently that we’re not the biggest fans of short finishes and this is another dram where we’re a little disappointed that the finish wasn’t longer. While It’s a good dram that we’re happy to have tried, it’s not blowing us away, and we can’t but help feel that if it had just been left in the cask a while longer we could have had something really interesting. Extra half point for being good value.
- 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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