Review No.173. Shackleton

You often find an elaborate story behind some whiskies that are conjured up by creative marketing teams.  I tend not to take notice but the story behind Shackleton caught my attention because it can be verified.  This recipe is based on a whisky that was found in Antarctica which was left behind by Sir Ernest Shackleton who was an explorer.  The bottle(s) were found frozen and estimated to have been over 100 years old.  A limited edition bottle was released by Whyte & Mackay based on the flavour profile of the bottle that was found but this is now quite difficult to get hold.  This version of the Shackleton is a more accessible and can be found in supermarkets across the UK for around £30 or £20 when on offer.


Whisky: Shackleton Blended Malt Scotch Whisky, 40%

Nose: Light smoke, sea salt, vanilla, grass, citrus, pear drops, mint, barley sugar

Taste: Salt, vanilla, peppermint, menthol, butterscotch, honey, smoke

Finish: Salt, vanilla, smoked wood

Score: 3.5

Summary: This is an interesting blend and well worth the price when on offer in the low £20 region. My favourite characteristics of coastal, floral and some spice in combination is on show in the Shackleton.  It reminds me of Scapa Skiren but with a sharper citrus sweetness to it whereas the Scapa Skiren has more vanilla and butterscotch.  There is a light whiff of smoke throughout this one which will not put you off if you are not a fan of smokey whiskies.  I can’t find much here to fault, it is delicious and different to what you would find for the price range on the supermarket shelves across the UK.



Scoring scale: My scores reflect a balance of the overall experience, availability and cost for a whisky,

1 – not to my preference

2 – tastes fine but does not excite me

3 – more to my liking and would revisit occasionally

4 – very much to my liking and would consider as a regular feature on my whisky shelf

5 – permanent feature on my whisky shelf


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