Cragganmore, one of the Classic Malts of Scotland according to the advertising, was fairly unknown outside the scotch drinking public until fairly recently in it's 135 year history. Once the "Classic Malts" series was started by UDV in 1989 it has become more popular as single malt. That reason and the fact that Michael Jackson, the famed reviewer, has called it's nose "The most complex aroma of any malt." Classified A1 for blending most of the production is used in White Horse and McCallum's blends (not Macallan if you were thinking it ).
Another sticky day here in the northeast, temp is running about 94 and the humidity is about the same. I tried going out on the deck but with no breeze it got uncomfortable rather quickly. Since the deck wasn't going to work out I took my drink and headed downstairs to what the wife calls the Theatre Room. There in the nice 76 degree temp I pondered my dram.
Pouring a good sized dollop into the glass one is treated to a light honey oak color that noses a complex mixture of honey, peat, smoke, flowers and spices all very cleanly mixing together. The taste is a perfect match to the nosing, starting off sweet and becoming fuller and darker as the liquid lingers on the tongue. The finish is slightly drying until the smokey bits and fruit take over and then it lasts a good long time. Who am I to go against the esteemed Mr. Jackson? He gets paid to drink and I don't so he has to be doing something right . Alas, I disagree that Cragganmore has the most complex aroma of any malt as he stated. Maybe he was being generous or maybe I'm not good enough to tell. Either way, it is a great nose just not the best so far for me.
A Whisky Mag Editor's choice, a 90 rating by Mr. Jackson and a regular pour in my glass. Buy it if you don't already have it. An Ace.
Edited by AVB, 18 November 2006 - 12:10 PM.