La Fête Nationale! A Whisky Celebration with Auchentoshan 1999 Bordeaux Cask.

It seems last month I missed the launch of the new limited edition Auchentoshan. Aged for the entirety of it's life in a Bordeaux Cask.

These French oak casks from the region that produces extraordinary wines, such as Chateau d'yquem and Château Lafite Rothschild, generally offers up big spiced elements, cream, hints of woodiness and a depth of caramel sweetness not always attributed to whisky.

Released on Bastille day (July 14th) this dram has been received well by some of the blogs which have reviewed it already.

Earlier this evening myself, Billy and Jason B Standing had the opportunity to try it while recording the second offering of "Village of the Drammed".

In retrospect, I think this is the sort of dram I'd personally have to revisit or spend a little more time with. Initially I wasn't won over, but have found it to be the case with most other caskstrength Auchentoshan's I've tried! 

The Vital Statistics

Age: 11 years old

ABV: 58% ABV (Caskstrength),


Number of bottles: ?

Price: £44 - £49

The Nose: The front of this has a big fruitiness you'd expect from something aged exclusively in a wine cask. There is build up into vanilla, grape skins and a pasta cream sauce on the boil. To the back there is something of an off note, which at first it's hard to describe!

It becomes almost meaty, but offers candied orange zest, cinnamon and clove spice.   

Over time it becomes a little like like the decaying leaves in a forest after a heavy rain fall. For those not so familiar with this smell, I'd say it's a little like a crisp pungent brown sugar sweetness tainted with a slight element of used tea bags in a bin of fresh food scraps.

The Palate: A burst of sweetness is very quickly followed by the sort of bitterness you get when biting into a grape seed. The initial finish is drying and peppery with the bitterness lingering. 

Coming back to it you get more of the fruit element; blueberries, cranberry, gooseberry and a hint of sloe gin. Whipped cream with fresh vanilla & cinnamon chase the finish, but continues to suggest some drying bitterness.

A pleasant dram with an interesting nose! I could see this as an appetizer with canapés of thinly sliced ham & creamy cheese.

It's definitely one I'm going to have to come back too!