Old Pulteney 1990/2004 Blackadder Raw Cask

The Shape Shifter

Incidentally while I tastes this dram, the 2013 album of Swedish metal band Amon Amarth: The Deceiver of the Gods was playing on my stereo. One particular song that came up, in my eyes perfectly captured the spirit of this whisky: The Shape Shifter, a song about the Nordic god Loki, the god of mischief. (no not the marvel version) with the power to change his form, be it a man or an animal.  

For legal reasons I did not refer to this whisky in my title as “Loki”, as not to unleash Ragnarök from the people of Highland Park upon myself ;)

Another Blackadder Raw Cask, a miniature. Distilled in 1990, bottled in 2004. A 13yo single malt, matured in cask #3951. Bottled at 65.3% ABV (I actually had to check my register, but this is the whisky, with the highest ABV that I have tried thus far)

Old Pulteney10_bigColour: pale gold

Nose: without water: fruity and fresh, lacking the usual coastal character of Old Pulteney, white fruits, pears, scents of fresh cinnamon and hint of vanilla.
(with water added: more hints of mint, eucalyptus and a whiff of coconut. The white fruits develop into a powerful fresh strawberry aroma, what a transformation!)

Mouth: without water: an intensely fruity palate with overwhelming notes of pear, like a ripe durandeau. But far too powerful at this ABV-level
(with water added: the pears disappear and are replaced with notes of coconut, hints of oranges, lemon peels.)

Finish: a long, bold and dry finish with spicy overtones: a predominant strong touch of cinnamon.

The Verdict

Hats off, just another great whisky by Blackadder. Like the title promised: a real shape shifter. When water is added the profile of the whisky rapidly transforms into a whole new palate of flavours. Not overly complex, but such bold flavours. That strawberry nose was impressive. Experiments with water on the whisky was like tasting two different whiskies. But also a necessity, a spicy whisky at 65,3% felt like I poured boiling water down my throat, a dash of water please?  Highly recommended.