Macallan Sienna (1824 Series)
The 1824-series of Macallan, which was launched back in 2013, is probably one of the most criticized product launches in the history of Scottish single malt whisky. A lot has been said about it, and I don’t believe I’ve anything new to add, so I won’t. If you want more background information, just read this. What I’ll do instead, is taste the Macallan Sienna, which is supposedly the best of the four color-driven expressions.
Macallan Sienna (43%, OB)
Nose: Oranges, sweet vanilla, manderines. The Sienna has a faint nutty quality, and also some chocolate and toffee notes. Somewhere in the distance you’ll find some wood spices. The nose lacks power, but is pleasantly balanced.
Taste: Dried fruits, golden syrup, apricots. Also some cloves and oranges, ginger and cinnamon buns. The palate is a bit watery.
Finish: Wood spices, white chocolate, dried oranges. Gentle, maybe a bit too soft. Short to medium in length.
There’s not much wrong with the Sienna. It is properly balanced and shows some nice aroma’s and flavors. The Sienna would be a great introductory dram for someone who has never had whisky before.
And that is where the problem lies. This should be an entry level whisky, but at a minimum price of 70 euro it isn’t. It is a very nice everyday dram, easy drinking. But for my money I’d go for something else, maybe a Bunnahabhain 12yo, which’ll set you back about half of what the Sienna costs.
Thijs is a spirits writer and accredited liquorist from The Netherlands. He runs the blog Words of Whisky and contributes to a number of Dutch and international publications.