I would not have known about this blend if it wasn’t for the recent hype surrounding Glenallechie. They are under new ownership and as a result have released a new range which has received very positive reviews. I prefer to try before I buy a standard sized bottled of whisky so I came across a miniature pack which contained 2 single malts from the range and this blended malt. I assume the majority of malt is from Glenallechie but there is also malt from Islay to give it a smoky flavour. What is more interesting is that it also contains whisky that has been aged in first-fill bourbon, Oloroso sherry, virgin oak and red wine casks. I have not (knowingly) come across such a mixture of finished malts in a blend before so was very intrigued to see what this one was all about.
Whisky: Lum Reek Blended Malt Scotch Whisky, 46%
Nose: Roasted nuts, sherry, raisins, sea salt, heather, earth, bourbon, cinnamon, leather
Taste: Roasted nuts, earth, heather, brine, leather, vanilla, cinnamon, chilli
Finish: Vanilla and cinnamon, then chilli and bitter oak
Summary: This is a nice blended malt. I get a lot of the bourbon influence in this, maybe due to the first fill bourbon and virgin oak finished malts. There is also a decent dose of peat notes too coming through as earth and brine. The peat notes sit nicely alongside the other flavours without dominating. Some of the sherry influence is there too in the form of roasted nuts and raisins. The flavours evolve over time and I got each of the bourbon and sherry notes in waves but always supported by the peat notes. The texture to this is very nice too, rich and oily. This blended malt puts many single malts to shame at its price point and shows illustrates how exciting the blended category can be. This is put together really well – some serious blending skills have been applied this one. On reflection I should have rated it a 4 but gave it a 3.75 at the time of tasting so have to stick to that.
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.masterofmalt.com