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The Dalmore 12 Year
About The Dalmore 12 Year
The Dalmore 12 Year is the least expensive entry in the Principle Collection of whiskies from The Dalmore Distillery. This legendary distillery was founded in 1839 and is located in the Northern Highland region of Scotland. Each of the different Scottish regions produce distinctly flavored whiskies and the Highland scotches tend to have sweet and fruity notes.
In order to produce the specific flavor of this scotch, the Dalmore uses two types of barrels in the aging process. The scotch spends the first 9 years in ex-bourbon barrels then 50% of the whiskey is transferred to oloroso sherry casks. The two vessels are mixed back together before bottling.
The Dalmore 12 Year is also a single malt scotch. “Single” means the whiskey was produced by a single distillery and “malt” indicates malted barley is the sole grain. The Dalmore also uses caramel coloring to create a darker color in the finished product.
❖ Spirit: Highland Scotch Whiskey
❖ Distillery: The Dalmore Distillery
❖ ABV: 40%
❖ Aged 12 years
❖ Moderate-High Price
Tasting Notes from Dalmore
❖ Nose: Citrus fruits, chocolate and aromatic spices
❖ Taste: Seville oranges, dried fruits and hints of vanilla pod
❖ Finish: Roasted coffee and dark chocolate
My Tasting Notes
❖ Color: Dark amber
❖ Nose: Chocolate and stone fruit. This must be from the sherry casks. After a while I get something spicy like spiced cider or pie.
❖ Taste: More spice than on the nose, cinnamon, slight coffee and vanilla. I can taste some fruity sweetness from the sherry cask. When comparing my notes to the Dalmore website, I was surprised they they mention citrus and orange. I wasn’t able to taste any citrus let alone a specific type of orange.
❖ Finish: long finish, coffee with cream and sugar
Scotch and Soda
2 oz. scotch
❖ Fill glass with Ice
❖ Add scotch
❖ Top with club soda and add lemon twist.
I wasn’t sure if I should include a cocktail with this review. Most scotch enthusiasts would probably consider it sacrilege but I was curious what notes would come through when club soda is added. And I sincerely believe everyone should enjoy whiskey however they want. But I personally have a hard time mixing cocktails with spirits that cost $50 and up but that’s mostly because I’m cheap. But I might not include a cocktail in future reviews of more expensive or complex spirits.
The Dalmore 12 Year worked pretty well in a Scotch and Soda. I immediately got the chocolate, coffee and vanilla notes but all the fruit and spice disappeared. The lemon twist didn’t add too much either so I might skip it next time. But overall it was a refreshing cocktail and it could be fun to try with different whiskies.
I was pleased with the Dalmore 12 Year and think it’s a great choice for anyone who’s looking to get into scotch. There can be some intimidating flavors in the world of scotch but this one is much more approachable while still having complexity. It was fun to try and pick out the different notes even if I didn’t match the Dalmore website.
My partner gave me this bottle as a Christmas present and it came with some branded tasting glasses. She thought she was just buying the bottle but they sent the whole set (pictured below). I was impressed with the overall presentation and will definitely use the glasses.
The price is the only thing stopping me from saying this scotch is a must buy. I regularly find the Dalmore 12 Year for about $60 in my local liquor store. This is a significant amount of money but it’s also in a common price range for well regarded scotches. And I think it ultimately lives up to the price tag; even if you might pay a little extra for the Dalmore name.
As always, drink responsibly.
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