Booze Review

Whisky Review – Cragganmore 20 Year Old 1991 Single Cask

Way back in August 2011, our friends at the Master of Malt sent G-LO a nice sample pack as told by this post: As you can see, I’m really behind in getting to this review.

Here are my impressions of this whisky…

  • Appearance: The samples from Master of Malt always come in a nice 3cl bottle with the cap sealed in wax. The color is very light yellow or straw. A swirl around the glass leaves the glass evenly coated without hardly any legs at all.
  • Aroma: The aroma is fairly light for a whisky that is over 100 proof. It is not unusual for me sip on bourbons that are over 110 proof so for me, the alcohol was not overwhelming. If you are more accustomed to lower proof whisky, this might not be for you.
  • Taste: On the tongue it hits right up front. Even with the high alcohol content the flavor of the whisky comes through. The finish is quite long and extends deep into the back of the throat and finishes with a bit of smoke that is not normally found in the Speyside whiskys I normally drink. Adding a bit of water really opens up this whisky. The harshness of the first sip was replaced by a very smooth and easy to sip whisky that might be a bit too easy! What initially was an almost harsh rush of alcohol was replaced by a very smooth, almost sweet taste that was very warming on a chilly March evening. Anything over 100 proof that goes down this smoothly might get you into trouble if you’re not careful!
  • ABV: 54.2%

Overall, I found the Cragganmore to be a very enjoyable whisky. Head on over to our friends at Master of Malt and order yours today!

21 replies »

  1. Love the guys at Master of Malt – and glad to know I’m not the only blogger who gets seriously behind on reviews/posts/articles! You should be proud that you got it done! Nice review – I do enjoy a good, high abv dram.


    • Tell me about it! I have a serious backlog of reviews to do. This is not a bad thing by the way.

      Speaking of backlogs… you need to write about your booze infused adventures in the UK and the rest of Europe. Looks like you had a FANTASTIC time!


      • Haha, seriously. And no, it’s not a bad thing to have a backlog of whisky reviews to get through!

        Re: my blog, thanks for the support! Post 1 about my visit to Forsyth has been delivered. 🙂 Working on the rest (including my review of a cognac I was able to buy in a vending machine … only in France).


    • Thanks for the feedback! I too like a high alcohol content…you can always add some water to bring it down. I want to hear more about the Cognac in a vending machine. Pennsylvania had an experiment with wine kiosks that didn’t work out so well!


      • I agree with you – you can never add more alcohol into the whisky bottle but you can always add a bit of water to tone it down. A good bottle of “concentrated whisky” makes me happy! I’ll def post about the cognac vending machine experience! 😉 Slainte!


    • Yeah, it was only a bit smokey at the finish while sipping it neat. Adding a bit of water completely eliminated the smoke and really opened it up. Overall a very enjoyable sample!


      • Speaking of smoke and whisky…

        We got some new stuff in the mail that you need to try. Given our hectic schedules and somebody who can’t seem to get his boozin act together before 11PM thanks to his urchins (he knows who he is), I think a bottle rotation program needs to be implemented. It’s the only way that we’ll ever get some group tastings done. Let me know what you think.


    • Yes, it was quite enjoyable. Adding a splash of water really opened it up and smoothed it out quite a bit. I’m sorry I sat on that for so long! I wish I had more, I’d like to get your take to see if you thought this crossed into “demon” territory!


      • I don’t know what my problem is with the “demon bourbon” (drink it too fast, too healthy a pour, too little water) but I fare better with cask strength whisky even though the ABV is roughly the same. We will have to search for this one.


  2. I think I have a Whiskey and a Rum that is in the tasting backlog from this same shipment. Time for a tasting!!


  3. Cragganmore is a Speyside that is distilled using unusually short flat topped stills. The design of the stills was intended to cause some of the distillate to drip back down into the pot for additional distillation (although I wonder if it was just because the original room had a low ceiling). The effect is that a lot of heavier volitiles make it through and you get a lot of richer fruity flavors. I get tropical fruits. I haven’t tried this expression (hey Master of Malt – consider The Coopered Tot)! It sounds like something right up my alley.

    Congrats on the 100,000 hits. It couldn’t happen to a nicer group of hard drinking guys!


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