Review: The ImpEx Collection – Ardmore 2008, Auchroisk 2011, and Penderyn 2017
Edition two of the winning ImpEx Collection independent bottling series has arrived, comprising seven whiskies and two rums. Today we’re looking at three of the whiskies in the release, two from Scotland and one from Wales, all limited to a single cask.
Let’s not waste time on introductions and dive in.
The ImpEx Collection Ardmore 2008 13 Years Old Cask #5943 – Aged in a refill bourbon barrel, this is a surprising Highlands whisky that finds a substantial peatiness on the nose, quite earthy and pastoral, with heavy aromas of underbrush. Well malted on the palate, it sees ample cereal backed up by a greener grass note and some dark caramel and coconut husk elements. It’s a bit flat on the finish as the peat fails to loosen its grip, though there’s a slight spiciness that kicks in late in the game that adds some nuance. 118.6 proof. B / $150
The ImpEx Collection Auchroisk 2011 10 Years Old Cask #806214 – Also quite unexpected, this hogshead-aged Speyside has something of a petrol note up front, complemented with notes of toasted cereal and old rope. Sweetness is elusive here, but it perks up quickly on the fruity palate, which is lightly tropical and vanilla-soaked, winding up on a tangerine note. Malt endures. 115.6 proof. B+ / $130
The ImpEx Collection Penderyn Cask 2017 5 Years Old Cask #138 – Aged in a Blandy’s Malvasia Madeira cask. I didn’t expect to enjoy this unique release (ImpEx calls it a “world first”) much but found it my favorite of the lot. The wine-laden nose is oxidized and rich, yet balanced with a dusting of spice and a thick, leathery quality that becomes so earthy it’s almost muddy at times. You can’t miss the Madeira on the palate, which is sharp and fruity, old and oxidized, all at once. A fun little floral element perks up on the finish, alongside some more berry-focused elements that showcase raspberries, milk chocolate, and cinnamon. Kind of a weird combination, but so is Wales and Maderia, innit? 114.8 proof. A- / $140
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