Clynelish is currently Sutherland’s only functioning distillery and forms part of Diageo’s ‘Classic Malts’ stable. As with most distilleries, most of the spirit produced is used for blending; in Clynelish’s case this is amongst others, Johnnie Walker Gold Label.
The Clynelish 14 year old is currently the standard expression produced by the distillery and is bottled at 46%.
Vanilla sweetness with floral notes, salt and pepper. More orange and citrus comes through with water.
The initial taste is sweet, floral with some sweet citrus and spice. There’s a little salt in there too. Quite a spicy, dry finish. Not a viscose whisky, but the waxiness is an unexpected sensation when drinking it; it coats your mouth and lasts long after the taste has disappeared.
Water opens it up well and orange blossom seems more prominent the overall sweetness is raised and a little creaminess is introduced.
I like this whisky; easy to drink and although the flavours are not hugely distinctive, it’s very well balanced and that waxy finish is intriguing. I’ll need to seek out some of the other bottlings to see if that is a signature of Clynelish or just this expression.
Definitely recommended for something a little different.