Gordon & MacPhail Linkwood 15 Distillery Label (2008)

Review #40: Gordon & MacPhail Linkwood 15 Distillery Label (2008)

Distillery: Linkwood

Region: Speyside

ABV: 43%

Age: 15 Year

Price: $65

Color: 1.2, Chestnut/Oloroso Sherry

. Natural Color and Non-Chill Filtered.

The Distillery Label range from Gordon & MacPhail is interesting. They buy new make whisky from distilleries and then age it themselves, which a little different most Independent bottlings I’ve seen.

This review is from a first pour from the bottle, tasted first neat in a Glencairn that’s been rested for about 10 minutes and then finished on the rocks.

Nose (according to the wife): Loads of sherry. It’s sweet with honey, green apples, and a hint of strawberries.

Palate: Very smooth mouthfeel, not too thick but not thin either. It starts as a textbook definition of a sherry bomb—sweet with lots of sherry influenced honey and sherry influenced fruits. The fruits remind me of dried dates and dark cherries. About halfway, right after the bit of fruit, the palate on this one changes gears a little bit as some floral and nutty notes come through. The floral notes reminds me of spring flowers and more specifically of tea made from spring flowers. The nutty note I couldn’t quite place but I’m thinking walnuts. These last few notes are a little more forward after introducing some water.

Finish: Medium to short in length. The main note I get here is that spring flower tea with a bit of a refreshing drying effect right at the end that cuts the finish a bit short. I do occasionally get a bit of a very ethanol-like note which isn’t pleasant.

Conclusion: I’m always excited to find bottlings of Linkwood and this one didn’t disappoint. The nose is delightful with the sherry and fruits. The palate does very well from being more than just a huge sherry bomb. The spring flower notes that linger toward the end are refreshing and very enjoyable. The one thing that really detracts from this dram are the harsh ethanol notes that pop up every so often at the end. It’s very off-putting and almost like a rude awakening. Without those, this would probably be rated higher. Would I buy another bottle? Probably.

Final Score: 84

Scotch whisky review #40, Speyside review #18, Whisky Network Review #57

Scoring Legend:

  • 96-100: The perfect dram, nectar of the gods.
  • 90-95: Near perfect, there is something truly special about this whisky.
  • 85-89: Amazing, will always try to keep a bottle of this in my collection.
  • 80-84: Very Good, maybe only one minor nitpick about the whisky keeping it here.
  • 75-79: Good, quite enjoyable to drink.
  • 70-74: Solid, wouldn’t go out of my way to get it.
  • 60-69: Meh, still drinkable.
  • Below 59: If you have a bottle of this, start cooking with it instead.

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