Macduff 1984 28 Years Old (Dewar Rattray)
Macduff is a distillery stemming from the post war whisky boom, just like Glenallachie. Come to think of it, both distilleries were designed by the same guy, Welshman William Delmé-Evans. He designed efficient and compact distilleries, letting gravity do much of the work instead of pumps and valves.
A trademark of his, are the horizontal shell-and-tube condensors. These are pretty uncommon, as most condensors are installed vertically. The condensors at Macduff are also cold. Not just cooled, but cold. It is this technique that adds weight tot the spirit of Macduff.
Macduff is owned by Bacardi, and the official releases are named Glen Deveron. I forget why that is, but I seem to remember it has something to do with the rights to the name Macduff. Anyway, Macduff doesn’t have a large following anyway, although I do know a few connaisseurs that really appreciate the liquid produced by this Highland distillery.
Today I taste a rather mature Macduff from a sherry butt, bottled at 28 years of age by Dewar Rattray and distilled in 1984.
Macduff 1984 28 Years Old (51,4%, Dewar Rattray, C#3149)
Nose: Mature and subtle, with a clear sherry influence, but nothing too overpowering. Vibrant notes of orange, plums, apricot marmalade and peach, followed by sweet fudge, and with a whisper of burlap and tobacco.
Taste: That nose is a tough act to follow, but this whisky is up to the task. Some charred oak, followed by bitter grapefruit, lemon and orange peel, as well as a whiff of smoke, and a peppery edge.
Finish: Lingering spiciness. Medium to long.
This whisky shows a beautiful restrained sherry influence, one you can only really find in long-matured liquid. The nose is fruity, while the palate is a bit more muscular. Love it!
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.