On paper, I should be a fan of Highland Park, I should have a bottle from their range at home at all times. The heather, floral and coastal/peat characteristic is my go to flavour profile. However, I have only had a bottle of the 12 year old once and have not purchased it again and it has taken me a few years to get around to buying a sample of the 15 year old. I do like the 12 year old and I think it provides good value for money when on offer. The problem is that prices for the rest of the range have been on rise and the news that I am hearing from many whisky drinkers is that the quality is not rising at the same rate. This sample I am trying is from the range before they were re-branded with Viking stuff as you can see from the image above. I believe the 15 year old age statement has been discontinued so there won’t be many left. I have recently seen this bottle being sold for £85!.
Whisky: Highland Park 15 Year Old Single Malt Whisky, 40%
Nose: Heather, mango, pineapple, hay, bread, honey, sea spray, smoke
Taste: Malt, cinnamon, dried fruits, honey, barley, apples, pears, earth, tea
Finish: Honey, earth, black tea
Summary: I can see why this was so popular. There is a pleasant balance of tropical fruity flavours along with a good dose of malt and earthiness. The coastal element is there too in the background. All of this creates almost the perfect whisky for me but there is something about it that doesn’t make it a standout single malt. That something is the price. I would say try the 12 year old before jumping into their range..whisky drinking is an expensive hobby as it is.
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
Image source: www.thewhiskyexchange.com