Oh Taste & See: Clynelish 14 Year Old Single Malt Scotch

I've been sitting on this bottle of Clynelish 14 Year Old for a few months, but I'm glad I finally got around to popping it open as it quickly jumped to the top of my list of favorite single malts. It's not a common single malt - I picked up this bottle at a duty-free shop, but if you see it it's worth every penny of the $45-$50 price tag.

Clynelish distillery is owned by Diageo and is billed as a Coastal Highland malt. It is located in the seaside town of Brora, and is across the road from the much older Brora Distillery which is owned by the same company. The vast majority of the whisky produced at Clynelish is used in Johnnie Walker blends, with the 14 Year Old being their most widely available single-malt bottling. It's bottled at 92 proof, and is a lovely example of a well-balanced Scotch fit for any occasion.

Color: Clynelish 14 Year Old is the color of a golden wheat field - quite light and very natural looking, with a bright pop to it.

Nose: This whisky has a delicate but interesting nose with light aromas in the sweet fruit and floral categories. I picked up hints of honey, lavender, apples, and prunes. The most striking thing about it is how well everything is balanced together, creating a very pleasant aroma that pulls you right in for that first sip.

Flavor: The flavors in Clynelish are equally well balanced and it has a nice rich, thick mouth-feel. There are notes of honey, oatmeal, cloves, vanilla, and just a tiny hint of smokiness and leather.

Finish: The finish is full-bodied with oak flavors that fade to pepper and cinnamon, again with just a hint of lingering smoke and leather to keep you warm until the next sip.

Overall, it's a winner!