Monday, 10 March 2014

Highland Park Horizontal

I’ve previously dismissed Highland Park as overpriced and marketing led.  Not that marketing is a bad thing of course, but the ornate wooden cases (while cool) made me think the liquid was overrated.  I was wrong.  Sadly, it’s too late, none of this glorious liquid is still available.

Massive thanks to Johnnie Stumbler for this flight.  They are mostly tiny remnants of tweet tastings I didn’t manage to score – so lots of nosing and very little drinking (perfect for a Monday night!).


Highland Park Loki, 15 year old, 48.7% A⊕+

LokiBlogNose - Beautifully darkly waxed stewed fruits.  Apple, quince, raisins, Demerara sugar and butter.  And floor wax.  I’m trying to work out exactly where this library is, I think it might be a university library - newly opened and full of new blond bookcases and fresh carpets.  I love this nose. Why do they hide it underneath such an ostentatious wooden package?  I might have bought this if I’d known!

Body - Pepper, light smoke, a little wet cardboard, more stewed orchard fruit and some light, elegant wood.

Finish - Quite long, milk chocolate, then white chocolate and fading apples.  Really rather lovely.  A touch of whisky soaked raisin, and a whisper of black pepper right at the end.  This is the one I want.


Highland Park Freya, 15 year old, 51.2% A⊕

freyaNose - Oh man - elegant, rich, buttery fruit - pears and oranges.  Very fresh, very juicy and backed by chocolatey, waxed wood.  Behind this, a hint of red chilli and floral perfume.  Wonderful.  Makes me realise why people get so hooked on HP.

Body - Milk chocolate, spiced, more red chilli, a little cardboard and some pear.

Finish - Long, sappy, well balanced, quite smooth in the end.  Very good.


Highland Park Thor, 16 year old, 52.1% A⊕

thorNose - More polished woods plus ripe black cherries.  Really ripe, beautifully balanced clean woods (new pine furniture, cut oak cask and polished walnut) and fruits (mango, cherry, apples) and a faint chocolate note again.  A hint of strawberry ice cream.  

Body - Darker, spicier and bolder.  Chilli and pepper on top of the waxed fruits.

Finish - A bit shorter than the others,  but a lovely stewed fruit backing.  Finishes on fruit and nut chocolate bar.  Delicious, but a little less complexity and integration than the others.


Highland Park 30 year old, 48.1% A⊕+

highland-park-30-year-old-whiskyNose - Intense, dark fruit and marker pens, fountain pen ink.  National trust levels of waxed 4-poster beds, and a quick stroll through the floral gardens.   Almost wine-like with the floral notes, and stunning integration with the the dark but tropical fruit and waxed woods.  A faint hint of petrol, again the red chilli note (fresh and freshly cut).  Intense, bright and voluptuous.

Body - Smooth, old wood, sandalwood, a little licked joss stick.  Intense, bright tropical fruits.  Yet, very dry, a little pepper.  Elegant and classical, very masculine after that nose.

Finish - Long, oily, drying wood and chocolate.  A little pepper develops.  Tropical burps.  I love it.

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