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Pure Scot Blended Scotch Whisky

Review: Pure Scot Blended Scotch Whisky  84/100
a review By Chip Dykstra (Aka Arctic Wolf)
Posted on September 08, 2017

The Bladnoch Distillery was founded in 1817 which means that this year Bladnoch is celebrating its 200th year. The Distillery was built in the lowlands on the River Bladnoch by two brothers, John and Thomas McClelland. It is in fact, the southernmost whisky distillery in Scotland, and at 200 years of age, one of the oldest Lowland Scotch Whisky producers.

The McClelland family owned the facility for 121 years after which it went through several changes in ownership and periods of closure and re-openings. Recently (in July of 2015) the distillery was purchased by Australian entrepreneur David Prior, who invested in new equipment for the facility including new mash tuns, Douglas Fir wooden washbacks, two 12,500 litre capacity wash stills, two 9,500 litre capacity low wines stills, and a new steam boiler.

After the retrofit, the Distillery has began to resume production, and Bladnoch has released two new Blended Scotch Whiskies (Pure Scot and Pure Scot Virgin Oak 43) and three new Single Malt Whiskies (Bladnoch Samsara, Bladnoch Adela, and Bladnoch Talia). These expressions are just beginning to arrive in the Canada.

The subject of this review, Pure Scot Blended Scotch Whisky, is a blending of Bladnoch Single Malt Whisky with aged Speyside, Highland and Islay Malts. The whisky has no age statement, however it is known that the Bladnoch Single Malt Whiskies used in its construction are at least nine years old. The final whisky is chill filtered and bottled at 40 % alcohol by volume.

In the Bottle 4.5/5

Pure Scot Blended Scotch Whisky arrives in the medium-tall long-necked bottle shown to the left. The bottle has a heavy square base which provides stability on the bar shelf. The square shoulders are wider than the base and the tapered rectangle gives the bottle a masculine look that appeals to me. I also like the colourful imagery of mountain valleys and cold clear blue water on the label.  The back label gives us just a little information about the whisky to whet our appetites and the solid cork stopper serves to round out a presentation that impresses me.

In the Glass 8.5/10

The blended whisky has an appealing amber/gold colour in the glass and when that glencairn is tilted and given a slow twirl I see that the Single Malt liquor in the blend gives the whisky a lightly thickened appearance. The crest which has formed on the inside of the glass gives up a multitude of little droplets which run as slender legs (at a moderate pace) back down to the bottom.

The breezes above the glass reveal a lightly sweet whisky in which butterscotch is playing nicely with wisps of oak and grain spice and malt barley. As I let the glass breathe I noticed some vanilla melding with nutty almond and hazelnuts which reminded me somewhat of marzipan, and some indications of canned fruit (peaches and apricots). There are a few hints of heather and menthol in the air and the underlying oak is gaining a little strength. Perhaps I am catching a few hints of peat in the breezes, but the impression is vague indicating that the Islay whiskies were used judiciously in the blend.

All in all the breezes are inviting and I suspect that I am going to enjoy the dram.

In the Mouth 50/60

The medium bodied whisky enter the mouth with a combination of wood and grain spice combined with light honeyed flavours of almond and vanilla. The flavours work well together, and underneath I can taste a nice light wisp of peatiness. It is a very mild peat which serves only as an accent and not as a main attraction. Bits of raisin and leather mix with heather, menthol and sawgrass rounding out the flavour. On second sip I also notice a nice ribbon of light beer-like maltiness running throughout which is very pleasant. In fact,pleasant is a very good descriptor for the whisky which is just complex enough to enjoy on its own, but which seems to be suited towards a little cocktail exploration.

To that end I begin to experiment. I begin by adding ice which brings lovely chocolate flavours forward, and then I add a touch of ginger-ale and decide that a Mamie Taylor cocktail certainly would not be out of the question. However, I sensed that the whisky has more to offer and so I decided to experiment with the new bottle of bitters my wife recently purchased. The short cocktail I constructed was delicious (see recipe below). Pure Scot is not only a pleasant dram on its own, it has an appealing versatility in the mixed drink format.

In the Throat 12.5/15

The exit is enjoyable as the melded flavours of the dram seem to bring something new with each swallow. An ebbing sweetness seems to hold everything together with light wood spices providing just the right amount of heat for the throat. When I add an ice-cube some chocolate flavours emerge in the exit and the light ribbon of wispy peat seems to grow just a little.

The Afterburn 8.5/10

Pure Scot Blended Scotch Whisky is a nicely balanced whisky with flavours that mingle well with each other. The lightly sweet spirit is pleasant to sip neat or over ice, although I certainly would not be loath to mix a variety of cocktails either. To put it simply, the blended whisky ticks all the boxes for me.

You may read some of my other Whisky Reviews (click the link) if you wish to have some comparative reviews.

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Suggested Recipe:

Cerise Old-Fashioned

2 oz  Pure Scot Blended Scotch Whisky
1/2 tsp Sugar Syrup (1:1 ratio)
Ice cubes
Dash of Fees Cherry Bitters

Pour the Whisky and Sugar Syrup over ice into a small rocks glass
Add a dash or two of bitters
Stir and Enjoy!

Please enjoy my cocktails  responsibly, the aim of my blog is to help your drink better spirits not to help you drink more spirits.

Note: If  you are interested in more of my cocktail recipes, please click this link (Cocktails and Recipes) for more of my mixed drink recipes!

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As always you may interpret the scores I provide as follows.

0-25 A spirit with a rating this low would actually kill you.
26-49 Depending upon your fortitude you might actually survive this.
50 -59 You are safe to drink this…but you shouldn’t.
60-69 Substandard swill which you may offer to people you do not want to see again.
70-74 Now we have a fair mixing rum or whisky.  Accept this but make sure it is mixed into a cocktail.
75-79 You may begin to serve this to friends, again probably still cocktail territory.
80-84 We begin to enjoy this spirit neat or on the rocks. (I will still primarily mix cocktails)
85-89 Excellent for sipping or for mixing!
90-94 Definitely a primary sipping spirit, in fact you may want to hoard this for yourself.
95-97.5 The Cream of the Crop
98+ I haven’t met this bottle yet…but I want to.

Very loosely we may put my scores into terms that you may be more familiar with on a Gold, Silver, and  Bronze medal  scale as follows:

70 – 79.5    Bronze Medal (Recommended only as a mixer)
80 – 89.5     Silver Medal (Recommended for sipping and or a high quality mixer)
90 – 95         Gold Medal (Highly recommended for sipping and for sublime cocktails.)
95.5+            Platinum Award (Highest Recommendation)

 

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