Pittyvaich 25 y.o. Review

Not a single tasting note on here for Pittyvaich? Pffft. In fairness, we’ve only had our grubby little paws on three of them locally, but that’s no excuse for delinquency in sharing the word on those we have tried. The goal is, after all, trying to maintain a broad horizontal swath of distillery notes for those who want to hear a bit about all of it. Not to mention…with an expression such as this – the Diageo special release from 2015 – there will undoubtedly be more folks interested than there would be for one of the OMC single casks or something.

Pittyvaich was founded in 1975, and produced for a mere 18 or so years, before being shuttered in 1993 and ultimately razed in 2002. It was a purpose-built distillery, meant to supply malt for the Bells blends. The distillery (and brand) changed hands in the mid-1980s, finding a new home in the ever expansive stables of, you guesses it, Diageo. The distillery (more an addendum to the Dufftown distillery than a true matter-of-fact distillery) somehow managed to fend off the mad rash of early ’80s closures, which sort of suggests that maybe Diageo was unwilling to concede that such a young and probably still immaculate facility should be surrendered less than a decade after what was almost certainly a substantial investment of capital to get it off the ground. By 1993, however, the writing was on the wall for Pittyvaich (and Rosebank, for that matter). The doors closed and stayed closed.

Fast forward a few years and the DRFSR at Diablo HQ saw the windfall potential in feathering out the remaining stocks from another lost distillery to the whisky cognoscenti. Albeit at greatly inflated prices from what this rather innocuous style of malt would have sold for in more sane and sober times. Such is. We whisky history buffs are always going to shell out a bit extra to taste the spirit of a bygone age, aren’t we?

Ultimately, though, this is a so-so malt from what was almost certainly just a so-so distillery. That’s my two cents, anyhow. 131 people on Whiskybase were more generous with their scores than I. Goes to show, this is all just one guy’s opinion, aye?

49.9% abv. Distilled in 1989, bottled in 2015. Refill Bourbon Hogsheads. 5,922 Bottles

Tasting Notes

Nose: Immediately one to only fall ‘in like’ with. Damp hay, with some notes of green tea. Herbaceous. Popcorn. Bittersweet chocolate. Clean malt. White flour and cereal tones. Some soft, almost unidentifiable fruits. Heavy cream on popsicles. Cedar.

Palate: Wine gums. Rather firm oak. Some odd sort of dental note (reminds of being in a dental clinic). More of those tea notes. Vanilla. Chardonnay. Ginger and white pepper. Grape skin tannins. Somewhat drying.

Finish: A little tired and lazy, if I’m being honest. A bit flat with no real standout notes that carry on.

Thoughts: I like it just fine, but wouldn’t go so far as to say I love it.


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