Whisky Review: Rare Malts St. Magdalene 1970 Aged 23 Years

Style: Sweet, Waxy and Spicy

Nose:
Woof, powerful spice carrying the signature Linlithgow lemon-waxy aroma. Abundant red chilli, mineral notes quickly strapped itself on a doughy malt. Syrupy, tropical fruits and white fruits starting to shine in the middle. An unexpected touch of gunpowder and whetstone which have been trying very hard to stay out of sight, sweet, spicy and… a bit of funkiness. Interesting nose.

Palate:
Still a classic cask strength St. Magdalene, robust heat continues to carry a round and beautiful citrus sweetness. White fruits are gradually taken over by the bitterness of candle wax. While hot chilli continues to run rampant, the rest is staying more on the herbal/ grassy side. Lemon fragrance, timber wood sinks in, an oaky tail.

Finish:
Mellows down quickly, stewed tropical fruits laminated with a thin layer of wax. Vanilla malt and citrus beaming positively till the end.

Thoughts:
Another classic St. Magdalene – Waxy, citrus sweetness gleaming beautifully within the relentless, screaming spice. For me, the satisfaction found after enduring this level of intensity, is highly rewarding. Isn’t life like that as well? Perhaps this is the real charm of St. Magdalene. Literally a mind-blowing whisky.

☆☆ [Highly Recommended]

[Original Bottling | 58.1% | 1970 Distilled | 1993 Bottled | Cask Strength |** | Tasted at bar]

Esmond

Tasted at Club Qing, Hong Kong.

Whisky Review: Silver Seal Sestante Collection Linlithgow 1982 23 Years Old

Style: Waxy Fruits, Oaky and Spicy

Nose:
Powerful but a clean set of aromas on the nose. Refreshing green pine wrapping around lemon-orange citrus and candle wax. Coconut cream, overripe fruits hitting the sweet spot with spirit spices and herbal elements acting as counterbalance. Remarkable stuff, making me wonder why did this distillery have to shut down when the aroma of its spirit is so refined. Malt syrup brimming softly at the back. Nice.

Palate:
Tremoring entrance, well, it is 61.5% after all and there is no mistake to that. Crystallized lemon and orange at the front quickly followed by fresh wood shavings and coconut shreds. Clean green pine combines with the spirit spice and surges high. Beewax cascading while fruits elevate and we are heading towards a floral, soapy region. A lick of timber, heather honey quieting diffusing at the back.

Finish:
Cooked fruits boiling gently, honey oak giving a final bittersweet brace. All nice and gentle.

Thoughts:
My first review on a Linlithgow, or St. Magdalene whichever you want to call it. Intense, bittersweet, herbal and waxy notes all conjugate together in a peculiar but good way. Fragrant fruits with herbal spices powering through the expression. Maybe just a tad overoaked, but it is definitely more than interesting in terms of tasting, as I cannot think of any current distillery which has a similar profile to this. A nice, refined dram. Maybe I should give this 2 stars…

[Recommended]

[61.5% • Independent Bottling • 1982 Distilled • 2006 Bottled • Single Cask • Cask Strength • Non Chill Filtered • Non Coloured • Bottle 61 of 257 • *+]

-Esmond