Whenever I speak to anyone about Pitlochry, there are two attractions that I always bring up. The first is the Fish Ladder, where you can see salmon making their way upstream to their spawning grounds, and the second is Edradour Distillery. What I never mention is the name of the hotel that served me a watery boil-in-the-bag burger that still haunts me to this day.
The Fish Ladder is great. You can take a walk from the town centre, traverse the dam wall, learn all about hydro power in the free exhibition, and then if you’re really lucky with your timing, you can see the salmon climbing the ladder through viewing windows. Educational and relaxing, it’s a pleasant way to while away some time.
What is arguably better than the fish ladder – unless you’re a whisky-hating Ichthyologist – is that one of Scotland’s most picturesque distilleries lies near Pitlochry (two if you include Blair Athol, but I’m not). Edradour is a charming wee distillery with a gurgling burn running through it and it’s quaint buildings painted in a simple yet easily-recognizable red and white. Owned by Signatory Vintage since 2002, the distillery’s output is tiny, which is in-keeping with it’s size, however the whisky they release, if this review is to be believed, is very much a delight.
This Edradour 10 Year Old is from their Straight From The Cask series, distilled in October 2009, bottled in November 2019 at 57.9%, and this release is one of 933 bottles. It even comes in a sweet wee crate for display and safe-keeping.
Colour: Coca-Cola/Edgar Allen Poe dark. Rested in a Glencairn for 10.
Nose: Full frontal sherry with caramelized muscovado sugar. It’s a very rich aroma with Christmas spice like cinnamon and cloves. Dark fruits, slightly nutty with underlying oak. Probably one of the richest smelling sherried malts I have had.
Palate: Sticky toffee pudding with rich dates; it’s sweet and potent, reminding me of mulled wine with star anise. Doesn’t need any water but I’ve added a drop to see – it never hurts to! Opens up a wee bit, some sugared orange peels, and the slight spice persists which is reminiscent of dark chocolate with chili.
Finish: Medium, peppery finish, wee bit of bite but actually very easy to drink.
As an avowed sherry finish fan, this is quite a whisky. I really enjoyed it – it’s incredibly punchy and I genuinely only really wanted to have a couple of reasonable drams from the bottle. There’s a rich potency to it that I honestly felt having any more may ruin it for me. With notoriously poor self-control, I am pleased I didn’t have any more – as much to save it (500mls!) as to savour it. Yes, £70 is steep, but I’m so pleased I grabbed one – I’ll happily say that if you like sherried whiskies then you couldn’t go wrong picking a bottle of this up.