Cameronbridge by Exclusive Grains
Lowland , Scotland
TelexTastedI am going to preface this by saying that I am not a grain guy. The nose brought out sawdust first, which is not what I am looking for, along with some apples, pears, vanilla, hay, and other light floral properties. This was a gift from @PBMichiganWolverine as we venture through all what Scotland has to offer. Thanks again. After letting it set out for about 20 min, I thought it definitely could handle water, but let's go in neat first. The palate is much better than I anticipated. Citrus notes really explode with tangerines, oranges, lemons, and even a few cherries on the palate. The taste lingers a bit on the finish, but is a bit dry for me. This makes the Girvan look shameful. Not something I would necessarily buy at all, but if a friend poured it, I would flash a quick grin. One of the best grains I've tried, so it deserves a 3.25 from me. No song though since it's not a malt. =D
The_RevTastedYou know that perfumey scent that's hard to place? The one that's a little floral, but also vanilla-esque, and a little woody, and a bit spicy, with a hint of rubber? I had to go look it up - it's ylang ylang, and it's what I got on the nose right away here. Those notes, plus the initial burst of hot alcohol, immediately reminded me of perfume, and a quick Google search later, I was able to confirm that - yes - ylang ylang was the obscure tasting note I was looking for. The palate is about as complex as a grain whisky is going to get, which is to say not very, but the notes that are there - vanilla, treacle, shortbread, baking spice, a hint of something floral off in the distance - are strong, flavorful, and hang together nicely. I was expecting the palate to come across as really hot based off the nose, but while there's certainly a little bit of nip to it, this is overall a pretty smooth, well-integrated dram with about as long of a finish as I would expect from a single grain. If this were priced at, say, $50/bottle, I'd keep it on hand permanently for those times where "simple, but good" is what the occasion calls for. Thanks, @PBMichiganWolverine, for sharing!
LeeEvolvedTastedSo, the group sample tour is winding down and coming to a close (at least until the newer Scottish distilleries get a legal product to market). This is the second to last sample I need to close this thing out: Cameronbridge. They are one of the largest grain distilleries in Scotland. This is a 25 year old, independent bottling from The Creative Whisky Company. It’s bottled at 52.9% and was supplied by my friend Pranay, from NJ. It’s a traditional golden yellow in the glass and appears oily with lots of thick legs when you twirl it up. The nose is initially very hot- I had to let this one set for quite some time before I could detect anything other than peppery grain and heat. With time, I got some brown sugar, vanilla, light citrus and faint oak. The palate is your typical grain style- pepper and oak with underlying cereal notes and a bit of tropical fruit and vanilla. The harshness has definitely faded and it’s actually quite smooth. The depth of flavors doesn’t really hang around- even with all the time in the glass. The heat comes through hard after mid sip and reminds me I’m drinking a high ABV whisky. The finish is long and steadily warming. Again, I didn’t get much complexity of flavor but it is grain, so that’s understandable. It remains smooth and that’s probably the highlight of this dram. For a single grain- I’ll take it. Overall, it’s nothing earth shattering, but I can see why it makes a great component in blends and given this well-aged sample I’ll happily admit it stands well on its own. Thanks again, @PBMichiganWolverine- I really liked this one. 3.5 stars. Cheers.
Generously_PaulTastedStop number 101 on the SDT is Cameronbridge. A Lowland grain distillery that most have never even heard of that is a big time producer of grain whisky. The largest in Europe from what I’ve read. This independent bottling comes from The Creative Whisky Co. as part of their Exclusive Grains line. Distilled in 1991 and bottled at the ripe old age of 25 (yes it’s old enough to rent a car!). Matured in a refill butt (bourbon I’m assuming but it’s not specified), and it’s one of 362 bottles. Bottled at cask strength of 52.9% ABV and is non chill filtered and natural color of honey gold. The nose opens with the distinct grain notes upon which we’ve all come to cringe with maggot gagging memories after pouring a single grain, but this...this is much mellowed indeed and not at all harsh even at cask strength. Vanilla, oak, coconut and toffee. More creamy vanilla, it’s really the star here and that’s fine with me as I love a strong vanilla note in all of my whiskies. Some anise, candied lemons, orange pith and unsweetened banana chips. If left to sit long enough there are some caramel and brown sugar notes, but they are very weak. Fair warning, water will easily drown this stuff. A reasonable amount almost completely closed off the nose, save for some vanilla and oak. The palate is very simplistic. Grain alcohol notes, vanilla, coconut, oak and very faint dried pineapple. After resting a good 30 minutes or more some orange oil comes into play and is a welcome addition. Water does nothing but bring out some chili spice and pepper. The amazing thing is that even at high strength there is little to no burn. I expected much much worse. A medium bodied mouthfeel that is creamy, lightly oily and mouthwatering. The finish sadly is on the short side with vanilla, weak oak, coconut and grain. This is a nice, mellow grain whisky. Not quite at the same level as Hedonism, but it can certainly best Girvan any day of the week. The long maturation period did little to add complexity, but it did remove the vast majority of the harshness associated with grain whiskies. At $100 I think I’d rather just buy a bottle of Hedonism. Much better than I expected though. Thanks to @PBMichiganWolverine for the sample. 3.5 Cheers100.0 USD per Bottle
PBMichiganWolverineTastedThis was one of my offerings in our final round of the SDT tour between @LeeEvolved @Telex @Scott_E and @Generously_Paul . I don’t think I ever had this single grain before. In fact, I never even heard of it. I really like the nose on this one...ripe fruits galore. Like bananas, peaches, and kiwi. Taste: can’t really feel the 50+ABV heat. Gentle on the palette, with a slight lingering heat. Palette hits you with baked fresh bread, oats, ripe bananas. Really a great summer time dram—-light, fruity, cereal, without a strong layer of heat. I paid about $100 for this. Definitely not worth it at that price.100.0 USD per Bottle
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