Longrow 18 y.o. (2011) Review

Longrow 18 (2011)013

46% abv

Score:  92/100


A beautiful Longrow that falls right in my wheelhouse.  18 years (give or take) is pretty much the perfect time for seeing the true coming-of-age of mature peated whisky.  It is that place in time where the peat is fading from the forefront to become just another nuance.

When you can finally take the palate and nose blistering effects of fiery young peat (and generally Longrow is peated to a whopping 50-55 ppm) out of the equation, you can actually see the true character of the spirit and cask quality.  A magic time in a whisky’s life cycle.

This expression follows a couple years after the brilliant 2008 release of Longrow 18, and though I’ve had both, I have yet to try them tete-a-tete.  Having said that…there was absolutely no question as to quality in either case.  Love this distillery…love this expression.

Nose:  Fruits are peeking out again through the peat at this age…but tart and tight.  A bit of creamy meringue.  Distant pepper (likely a lot more prevalent in its youth, but mellowed by now).  Slight floral note.  Grassy meadow.  Some brilliant ‘old cask’ notes.  peat and smoke are only hinted at.  Not a heavy hitter by any means.

Palate:  Apple and orange marmalade.  A bit of sweet lemon (not tart at all).  Sweet barley and oak.  A really nicely integrated and rather complex spice palette (actually quite tough to dissect).  Now some smoke and deep oiliness.  Almost ethereally earthy.


– Reviewed by:  Curt

– Photo:  Curt

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