Advent Day 22: “Samaroli Sherry” 22 y.o. (Samaroli)

Secret Spirits Advent Calendar Day 22 – December 22nd058

“Samaroli Sherry” 22 y.o. (Samaroli)

Cask #4 Sherry

40% abv

Score:  79/100


A whisky from the Secret Spirits Advent Calendar First Edition.

This is Glen Scotia.  I know that from seeing Jonathan’s post at Single Malting.  Otherwise, there’s not a hope in hell I’d guess this distillery even if you gave me 80 kicks at the can.  This is like literally no Glen Scotia I’ve ever encountered.  A true WTF? malt if ever there was one.

Glen Scotia is one of only three operational distilleries in the lovely little borough of Campbeltown.  The distillery neighbours nearby Springbank, but generally produces a much more contemporarily styled malt than Campbeltown’s darlings.  I should note here though, that recent Glen Scotia OBs are quirky at best and actually quite foul at their worst.  Additionally, the new packaging is even more unnerving than some of the bottle contents.

This malt, however, is actually closer to a Springbank than anything I’ve ever seen from Glen Scotia.  It’s a heavier dram (despite the anemic bottling strength) than expected, but in mostly the wrong ways.  Not bad, per se, but also not in tune with my palatal preferences.

I’m not sure from whom Glen Scotia may be sourcing their sherry butts, but I can’t say I’m impressed (at least with this one).  Single casks should be special.  This cask should not likely have been bottled as a single.  I kinda think Samaroli should have found a way to marry this one away somehow.  They’ve shown exceptional taste in so many of their releases for this calendar.  This selection is questionable.

Nose:  Meaty sherry.  Mince tarts.  Old leather, well-oiled and warmed.  Pith.  Polish and wax.  Very, very dried fruits.  Not very lively fruits.  Heavy oily notes.  All spice and faded old cigar boxes.  Figs.  Caramel.

Palate:  Thin and watery.  Leather again.  Figs and currents and raisins and such.  Is that it for fruit?  Quite dry and flinty.  Wet woods.  Almost a fishy note.  Wonder if this came out earlier, would it have been better?

Thoughts:  Not my favorite style of sherried malt.  Manzanilla perhaps?  Lacks the sweetness I’d hoped for.

Bonus:  My mate, Jonathan, and I are gonna blog on these drams side by side through the season.  Here’s a link to his notes on the same whisky at


– Reviewed by:  Curt

– Photo:  Curt

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