Highland Park Single Cask Chris Maile Edition
Highland Park Single Cask Chris Maile Edition, 13 YO, 57,5 %
A single cask Highland Park, exclusive for Norway, cask strength official bottling. This is not something we experience very often. In fact it's been quite a few years. Thus many whisky fans eagerly awaited Friday the 13th of January, when these 306 bottles were released for sale. Needless to say, perhaps, the website of our beloved state monopoly crashed, and the whisky sold out in a short amount of time. How quickly it sold out is impossible to say due to the technical problems (see my rant in Norwegian on that topic), but it was anything from a few minutes to an hour or so.
Anyways, this is one of several official single cask releases from Highland Park recently. Similar whiskies have also been released exclusively in Sweden, Denmark, Finland and Germany.
The Highland Park Single Cask Chris Maile Edition has been matured for 13 years in a 1st fill European oak sherry hogshead (cask #6352). The outturn was 306 bottles. The name of the release is to honour Chris Maile, the whisky guru behind the Oslo whisky festival (and Trondheim whisky festival and the Artic whisky festival). The whisky was officially launched at the 13th Oslo whisky fetsival the first weekend of November 2016.
If you were fast and persistent you could have picked up a bottle of the Highland Park Single Cask Chris Maile Edition at NOK 1200 (6846201).
Nose: This is massive, heavy and rich. The sherry influence is strong with this one. Dried fruits en masse! Mix that with the deep and ever-present heather honey and the soft wood smoke, and you have a very quaffable dram! OK, there's more going on here; worn leather, red berries, rich maltiness, homemade caramel pudding and golden syrup.
Taste: Rich and full-bodied mouthfeel. The dried fruits are certainly present on the palate as well. The peatiness is more noticeable, but still lovely and tempered. A touch of ashes - honey flavoured - just because we deserve it. A fair bit of spiciness to it; mainly pepper, but also some cinnamon and nutmeg.
Finish: Long finish. Very rich and sweet. It feels so rich and thick I imagine spreading this on a piece of fresh bread with a butter knife. Now wouldn't that be a special treat? Towards the end I pick up a touch of bitter oranges and it turns slightly dry in character.
Comments: This is a lovely dram, by any measure. I love it!
Sláinte! - Thomas