Yesterday we got the news that Rosebank is going to open again, thanks to Ian MacLeod (already owner of Glengoyne and Tamdhu – for now, and just to be clear about the intentions, there are pictures of the CEO with the glass full of whisky and a bottle of Rosebank Flora & Fauna well closed: maybe not the best metaphor to introduce the plan…). We’ll maybe give our two cents about the reopening, but right now we were just hit by an abstract need of a sip of a Rosebank, just to know “if it was worth”. We find in our samples cabinet a 1975 Rosebank, an ex-sherry cask bottled in 2002 by Douglas Laing: is it enough as a gauntlet to the future?
N: aaah, such a long time we weren’t nosing a Rosebank! The first impact makes us hail as a miracle: it’s literally a jubilation of fruit, fresh, juicy and delicious. There’s red fruits, with a lot of cherries, then hyper-concentrated strawberries (an hyper-strawberry jam); ripe apples, also stewed apples; dehidrated apricots. And pastry: there’s an aroma of your mother preparing a cake, there are apple dumplings with custard, fruit pastry. Some citrus peel, then, together with a mineral and malty note… that is the thing that impresses the most in this whisky: there’s a patina of wax, of old furtnitures (we think of an old spices cabinet…) that we love – you know it if you read us – and that you can only find in whiskies from this era.
P: magic comes back, with uncommon complexity and intensity. Apple cake, red fruits – even more than on the nose (again cherries and strawberries), for a fruity and “heavy“ profile, very deep and ‘old school’: spiced wood, a huge load of wax and beeswax, some dusty wooden furniture, there’s even something slightly metallic, without being an off note. Tamarind, chocolate, some bitter honey, red orange peel. A slight note of cigar tobacco? A vein of licorice? Yes, to everything. Spectacular.
F: if the palate had fruit and wax fighting for glory without rest, here on the final you get the two elements but in perfect succession: there’s a sensational fruity explosion, and then a neverending mineral waxiness.
How the hell did we manage to keep this sample for years in our cabinet? How? Can you please tell us, without being unpolite maybe? It’s an extraordinary, intense, complex, exhalting dram: 94/100. Dear friends at Ian Macleod, this is the benchmark: please, take care of the heritage you bought with the brand. Please. Come on. This bottle was on sale for about 700€.
Recommended soundtrack: Graveyard – Hisingen Blues.