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5 old blends 1940's to around 1960-63?

 
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lincoln imp
Master Of Malts
Master Of Malts


Joined: 23 Dec 2007
Posts: 659
Location: Lincolnshire England

PostPosted: Tue Jun 08, 2021 9:32 pm    Post subject: 5 old blends 1940's to around 1960-63? Reply with quote

This was just a quick tasting so will just list the short tasting notes and the first couple I tasted were really good, namely the 1940's Haig & Haig and the 1950's Spey Royal which are exactly what I look for in old blends, fat and creamy on the palate with good balance and plenty of flavour. This tasting also reaffirmed that if you buy bottles from auctions with fill levels below the neck or into the shoulder sometimes it does not pay off and over the years the air has affected the liquid, sometimes it is a gamble, some you win some you loose.

1st
Haig & Haig Pinch 1940's Renfield Importers USA 86.8 US proof spring cap


This old Pinch bottle can be dated as follows:- it is not after 1952 as it has Markinch on the label, it can be dated further as being at least 1954 as that is when the white `pinch` lettering was first put on the lower part of the bottle, it can be dated further still as being after 1957 as before then the foil caps where white changing to gold in 1957, spring caps were used up to 1963 for the import bottles.I have a bottle with a white foil cap for Renfield importers but with only Edinburgh listed so the youngest it can be is 1949 as between 1950-52 Markinch & Edinburgh is mentioned with Markinch after 1952.

pre 1949 Haig, and it is a good one.

Nose
90
Lots of honey, toffee, the faintest hint of menthol and something slightly woody like what you find in older bourbons.

Taste
89
Spicy and fruity to start with and this has plenty of power to boot:)
This develops nicely, good balance on show, stewed fruits like plum but also brandy soaked pears and this doe have a few similarities with old Brandy, maybe a little nutmeg.

Finish
89
The finish is on the long and soothing side remaining sweet
This bottle is very similar https://www.thewhiskyexchange.com/p/26489/haig-haig-12-year-old-bot1940s-spring-cap

2nd
Gilbey's Spey Royal, Fine Old Scotch Whisky, brown glass, cork bottle 1950's 70 proof[/b
]

I don't usually mention this sort of thing but fat legs and sticky tears in the glass, hinted to the full fat blend that was to come.
Nice stuff but also fragile with it, a higher strength with this profile would be awesome.

Nose
90
Bags of OBE, , loads of honey, cream, shortbread biscuit,
There are masses of stewed fruit , apricot, mango, hint of rich peach.
With time in the glass , everything seems to develop , this is a great nose.

Taste
88
Oh yes, just what I am after, good mouthfeel, creamy in it's delivery.
There is a slight OBE metallic taste, this is full of stewed fruit like the nose hinted at and if you add water is gets sweeter.
The palate does seem to thing out, but still ok.

Finish
87
,This has a long finish, remaining sweet with a nice caramel note on the tail with a little spice making an appearance

This is the same bottle the sample came from
https://www.thewhiskyexchange.com/p/44863/gilbeys-spey-royal-bot1950s?

3rd
Queen Elizabeth 12 year 75 proof Burn Brae Blenders, brown dumpy bottle +/- 1960, (could be a few years younger?)


This started out as a little above average but the increasing sweet note really lifts this one quite a few notches, I like it

Nose
85
A toffee apple nose this one Smile
The alcohol strength while only being 75 proof is prickly on the nose.
There is a little plum, and kiwi fruit which seems to grow. and there is also honey and menthol.

Taste
88
This is slightly sharp at first being on the fresh side but i find it quite pleasant all the same.
There is a hint of green apple, kiwi, maybe a bit of green gooseberry.
A really nice sweetness develops after air has got to this. like popcorn and marshmallow mixed together ands that sweetness grows which I really like.

Finish
86
A little spice appears and the sweetness is still developing, into a long finish

This is the same bottle https://whiskyauctioneer.com/lot/016745/queen-elizabeth-12-year-old-blended-scotch-whisky-1960s?s=60bfe49b6bd5f

4th
Old Smuggler Finest Scotch Whisky 1950's
Jas. & Geo. Stodart


A strange beast this one is, i have tried nothing like it before, i think air has altered it.
Still decent but not in the good category

Nose
87
This is lighter than the Spey Royal or the Haig & Haig, hints of orange and lime, that sort of citrus but then a green plum & goose berry note appears and it also has an old coal tar soap note which is pretty good

Taste
82
This is a dirty one, something industrial about it. like caramel but with chemicals in it.
I really cannot describe this because i have never encountered a taste like it, not off just so different?
There is fruit but it is slightly sour and there is ,OBE but i think air has got to this a little, the bottle level was lower shoulder, this was an old cork bottle.

Finish
83
Decent length, with the sweetness which has some toffee now, fighting with a slightly off chemical note
similar to this bottle- https://whiskyauctioneer.com/lot/345446/old-smuggler-scotch-whisky-1950s-us-import?s=60bfe42597d9a?s=60bfe42597d9a

5th
Stewart's Cream Of The Barley, Special Reserve, Sherry wine casks, 70 proof brown dumpy bottle


I have been outbid at auction a few times over the years for this bottle so jumped at the chance to buy a sample, sadly this is compromised and air has got to it, fill level was below the shoulder of the bottle the sample came from.

Nose
75
Hot buttered toast springs to mind at first, but alarm bell's are sounding?
The whisky colour is slightly cloudy which is never a good sign, this bottle as it was so old the fill level was just about in the shoulder.
Smells slightly sweet but also a vinegar note is there, again another bad sign that air has compromised the liquid.
With more time you detect spices.

Taste
65
Well thankfully it is not off and is candy sweet but the palate is a little thin at first.
This has an icing sugar sweetness about it, sweet iced biscuits, it is almost too sweet.
Then you get hit with a sweet but also weird, taste being not quite metallic but close to that which is a negative and as i go on the off note increases a little and grows

Finish
65
not great

This bottle is very similar just a few years younger https://whiskyauctioneer.com/lot/136987/stewarts-cream-barley-1960s?s=60bfe3b2eb5fa
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