Wolfburn Hand Crafted (OB)

Highland Debutante

Wolfburn was the first of a whole new generation Scottish craft distillers to fire up her stills. Thus it is only natural that she arrives first at the debutante ball. After a pricy inaugural release for the collectors, we were quickly spoiled with a NAS release for the layman, and another one, and another one,… Hell they seem to be spewing out bottles faster than you can say “Thurso”.
All very fine, but there is only one question that needs to be answered: is it any good? According to most respected whisky authors, it most certainly is. Time to check if truth was spoken.

Wolfburn2Description: official release, marketed as a NAS, but distilled in 2013 and bottled in 2016 at 46%.

Nose: like a damp sea cave: a shy, salty, mineral concoction of wet limestone. A soft alcoholic touch with notes of cereal, green apple and printer cartridge ink.

Mouth: light oily body, with a palate that is slightly sharp but soon turns sweet. Traces of pepper, (peat?) smoke, almonds, pear juice, just a stray note of mescal and raw cod.

Finish: salty but clean, vanilla, and rubbing alcohol.

The Verdict: salt, cod and rubbing alcohol, has anybody ever tried hakarl? No, that would be an unfair and malicious comparison. It is demonstrably fine for a 3yo whisky, but not really as good as some critics would like you to believe. But we shouldn’t expect miracles here: if it had blown me away, I would have lost all faith in the magic of maturation and age statements. To me it is just a youngish whisky that has outgrown its spirit phase, but is still far from reaching maturity. It could be the base for a great future single malt whisky, but why not wait a few more years before you buy a bottle?

Score: 76

Nose: 18

Taste: 19
Finish: 19 Balance: 21
   < 75: undrinkable, avoid at all costs
75-79: acceptable, give it a try but don't spend to much money on it
80-84: average, enjoyable whiskies mostly easy sippable entry-level single malt 
85-89: above average drams, often well aged expressions, open your wallet
90-94: excellence, sorry kids no x-mas presents this year, daddy needs this bottle
95-99: divinity, call your bank manager for another mortgage on your house