This week marks the end of an era – it's the last dram from Master of Malt's brilliant 3cl sample offerings; I've raved about this before, but it really is a fantastic way of getting to try all sorts of whisky (in case anyone was trying to think of what to buy me for Christmas!)
So, here we have their own bottling of 40 Year Old Speyside. As is traditional with such bottlings, there is no indication here of which distillery the whisky comes from.
It's a gloriously deep colour in the glass, signalling the time it's spent maturing in sherry casks.
The nose is rich but gentle – toffee sweet, an almost creamy vanilla and dried berry fruit, along with aged wood. Water hides the sweetness a little, but the wood continues to give a very tempting impression of age.
On the tongue, it's simply magnificent – a slow burning fire, roasted spice with a sweet oak undercurrent and just a hint of dark fruit through the lingering finish. Water retains the spice but reduces the fire a touch, happily without significantly changing the character of the whisky.
Overall, it's a great dram; powerful without being overwhelming and wonderfully rich. Well deserving of 3.5 stars!
This review was originally published 28th November, 2012. It was last updated 1st June, 2023.