Loch Lomond 18 Years (2019)
For years Loch Lomond operated in the shadows of the Scotch whisky industry, until a new owner pushed the distillery into the spotlight some five-odd years ago. Turns out they can make some very good whisky and the distillery is easily one of the most interesting in Scotland.
They’ve several brands, Loch Lomond being just one of them. Unlike little cousin Inchmurrin, Loch Lomond is not the result of one single type of new make, but rather a combination of several. Created from peated and unpeated whisky in both traditional pot stills as well as their trademark straight-necked pot stills, Loch Lomond 18 Years is quite the concoction.
Loch Lomond 18 Years (46%, OB, 2019)
Nose: Touches of cinnamon, melted butter, rye bread and ripe red apples make for a well-integrated and enjoyable, yet not very exceptional nose. There’s whiffs of caramel and just a sliver of smoke too.
Taste: Ah yes, it certainly has that straight-necked pot still signature you also find in Inchmurrin and Littlemill, with a nice, bright fruitiness and soft cardboard notes. There’s a subtle spiciness (white pepper) as well, followed by toffee and oak shavings. The faintest touch of smoke.
Finish: Lingering spices and a soft sweetness. Medium in length.
I like that Loch Lomond really does have it’s own character, which too few distilleries have. This is undoubtedly an older brother of the Loch Lomond 12yo, yet I’m not sure it is really a step up in quality, which is what it should be, as it is considerably higher priced.
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.