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Campbeltown Blended Malt 5 yo (2014/2019, Thompson Bros, 50%)

The Thompson brothers have been very lucky in life: they are the owners of Dornoch Castle, which houses one of the most spectacular whisky bars in Scotland. Luck, however, must be accompanied by passion and resourcefulness to be well exploited, and even these two characteristics are not lacking in the Thompsons. In 2016 they opened the Dornoch Distillery, in which they produce malt whisky in a hyper-handcrafted way with the passion of whisky lovers; next to this, they also launched a line of independent bottlings, under the name of Thompson Bros., which over the years has shown wonderful casks, and which is imported in Italy by Max Righi. Today we’re tasting a young blended malt from Campbeltown (rumor has it that it is basically a Glen Scotia teaspooned): only 5 years old.

N: very young, clearly, all soft and restrained – paradoxically delicate, we would say. There is certainly a large citrus fruit part: candied citrus, something that perhaps reminds us of cedar fruit… A light icing sugar, a ‘sweetness’ of malty cereal. Campbeltown can be felt especially with notes of lime, chalk, barley (perhaps slightly smoky, a bit dirty?), seed oil…

P: here it gets sweeter and more sugary, with vanilla and lemon in great evidence. The ‘dirtiest’ part continues to be built on lime and lots of wax, and there is also something that reminds us of boiled vegetables, which could be ribs, or cabbage. Spices, like ginger and white pepper. Towards the end, a savory and salty note emerges… The water tends to ‘normalize’ and increases the sweet part, especially of filtered apple juice.

F: white pepper again, porridge and icing sugar. A little more patina.

82/100. Don’t get distracted by the vote: it’s a difficult and naked whisky, commercially very tough but – to our taste – fantastic: we are always amazed by how the untamed soul of Campbeltown manages to shine, always. On sale for less than 40€, it is a whisky that will not be missing in our home whisky cabinet. Ah: make an highball if you want to fly away…

Recommended soundtrack: Amor Fou – Goodbye Lenin.

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