Review: Dalmore

For reasons that may become clear soon, it’s been a busy time around here and this site has suffered. But sometimes life just gets in the way of blogging.

Onward to Dalmore.

Back in, oh, December, I received a package with various samples of Jura and Dalmore for review purposes. Dalmore’s a Highland malt, and the house style seems to be a well-balanced whisky, with very little smoke. This style allows other flavors to come to the fore. I think the Dalmore range in general would be a great choice as an introductory scotch, especially for people who really enjoy bourbon. I had several bottlings of Dalmore to review, and although I didn’t find them to range in flavor as widely as the Jura bottlings I tasted earlier, they did show a subtle variance in flavor and aroma from bottling to bottling. Here are the styles I tasted:

  • Dalmore 12
  • Dalmore 15
  • Dalmore 18
  • Dalmore Gran Reserva
  • Dalmore 1263 King Alexander III

Dalmore 12

40% abv.

Color: Amber-gold.

Nose: Malt, toffee, honey, caramel, mild smoke, vanilla, coffee.

Tasting notes: Floral, mildly heathery. Hint of seaweed. Orange and a bit of chocolate. Walnut and pecan on finish.

Dalmore 15

40% abv.

Color: Bronze.

Nose: Very similar to that of the 12.

Tasting notes: Less hot at the front of the palate than the 12. Notes of chocolate, hazelnut biscotti, and white pepper. Orange zest and winter spice. A little winy, probably attributable to the sherry casks it’s aged in.

Dalmore 18

43% abv.

Color: Bronze

Nose: Again, similar to the 12 and 15, but a little woodier.

Tasting notes: Almond, iodine, oak, chocolate, and orange zest. Wine is more pronounced than in 15.

Dalmore Gran Reserva

40% abv.

No age statement, but said to be bottled from whiskies aged 10 – 15 years.

Nose: Honey, flint, pecan, peach, chocolate, coffee. As it opens, it becomes perhaps the most chocolaty of these, at least on the nose.

Color: Bronze.

Tasting notes: Stone fruit, pecans, orange zest, chocolate, subtle peat (very subtle). Creamy.

1263 King Alexander III

40% abv.

No age statement.

Nose: Malt, orange, honey, chocolate.

Color: Bronze. (I’m not sure color adds anything to these reviews.)

Tasting notes: Only mildly winy, which surprises me. This whisky is aged in a bajillion (okay, only six) different types of casks: wine, Madeira, Sherry, Marsala, bourbon, and port. The effect is notable but subtle in ways the 18 isn’t. Winter spice, orange zest, berry, hint of oak.