Tuesday, 25 October 2011
Old Pulteney Whisky beats the World
' The 21-year-old Old Pulteney malt absolutely exploded from the glass with vitality, charisma and class,' said Mr Murray. Whisky making has had a chequered career in Caithness. Of the three large commercial distilleries, only Pulteney survives. The Gerston and Ben Morven distilleries at Halkirk both closed a long time ago. Even in Wick, the distillery closed between 1930 and 1951 during a 25 year spell of prohibition introduced by the town in 1922 to combat what was seen as excessive drinking in the fishing community.
The picture above shows some of my personal stock- bottles in progress if you like. There is a 12 year old, a 17-year-old and a cask strength Isabella Fortuna litre bottle, celebrating the eponymous sailing fishing drifter which has become the Old Pulteney mascot. The 21-year-old isn't illustrated, an open bottle disappears very quickly; too quickly at over £80 a bottle retail!
But Dear Jim, and I don't want to say this too loudly, the local officionados prefer the much cheaper 17-year-old, but maybe that's just the canny Caithness folk.
Bourbons from the US took the runner-up places. George T Stagg was named second best while ten year old Parker's Heritage Collection Wheated Mash Bill picked up third place.
The Stuart Agenda by Alan Calder at willowmoonpublishing.com and amazon.co.uk and amazon.com