Miltonduff 1987 30 Years (Alambic Classique)
Alambic Classique is a German importer and wholesaler of distilled spirits, who sometimes dabble in bottling said spirits under their own label. Not just whisky, mond you, but also cognac, rum, gin and fruit liqueurs.
Most of their stuff is sold domestically, but some of the whiskies make it outside Germany. I know the Whiskybase Shop imports the offerings of Alambic Classique, for instance. And there are quite some, just have a quick look on their Whiskybase entry.
Now then, onto this Miltonduff, which is well old at 30 years of age. It first matured in a standard bourbon cask, before spending a bit more time in a Nicaragua rum barrel. Finishing such a mature whisky is usually not a good sign, I believe. If you want to experiment with wood types, surely there are younger, less valuable whiskies to choose from? I suspect a finish was deemed necessary. Let’s find out.
Miltonduff 1987 30 Years (55.6%, Alambic Classique, C#17805)
Nose: Opens up on touches of pine and wood glue, but is rather shy at first. Then some light floral notes, as well as damp leaves and saw dust. Now finally a little more expressive, with sultanas and peaches and lychees. Some sweet lemonade as well. Keeps changing and improving it seems.
Taste: Sweet arrival before a harsh chili heat takes over. Quite thin and unremarkable, with lots of cloves, coconut and a bit of vanilla. The influence from the rum barrel is disappointing. Becomes a tad sweeter with water, but it’s hard to call that an improvement.
Finish: Bitter oak, spices and soft sweetness. Medium in length.
It showed promise on the nose, but ultimately this Miltonduff from Alambic Classique did not quite get there. A shame after such a long maturation.
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.