Whisky Focus - Highland Park 14 Year Old Loyalty of the Wolf Review

Highland Park 14 Year Old Loyalty of the Wolf Review

20th September 2018
Review of the new Highland Park 14 Year Old Loyalty of the Wolf travel retail exclusive whisky.

Highland Park 14 Year Old Loyalty of the WolfThe Highland Park 14 Year Old Loyalty of the Wolf is the second expression in the Orkney distillery's new travel retail line-up.

Matured in a combination of sherry-seasoned American oak casks and American oak ex-Bourbon casks and bottled at 42.3% ABV with no added colouring, the Loyalty of the Wolf is described by the distillery as being a sweet complex whisky, displaying a fine balance of contrasting flavours.

Priced around 57 and presented in a 1 litre bottle and packaging which has been inspired by the distillery's Orcadian roots and Viking ancestry, being named for the Wolf which held iconic status for the Vikings. There is also a 35cl bottle available, priced around 22.

William Morrison's Tasting Notes:

Nose: Honey and vanilla infused with a very gentle touch of Highland Park smoke, apple and pear and a light barley sugar sweetness and faintest note of almonds.

Taste: A hit of mild smoke and spice leads followed closely by a little bitter zesty orange, green apple, a little nutmeg and cinnamon and some vanilla sweetening things up but just a little.

Finish: Medium length, the smoke changes to musty grass and the whole thing bitters out.

Comment: Being a frequent traveller I really wanted to love this as the handy 35cl bottle which is available priced around 22 would be ideal for a few days away if you fancied a decent dram in your hotel room and I was hopeful given its 14 years of age that it would be a decent dram. The nose is the best part of this, it is smokier on the palate than the nose lets on, but there is a bitter, almost mustiness, which lets it down on the palate and finish. Not a bad dram but it should have been a considerable step up in quality from the entry level Highland Park Spirit Of The Bear in the new Highland Park travel retail line up but it is still a slightly better option and the handy 35cl bottle will be a good option on those short trips.

SMW Score 82/100

Look out for the new  Highland Park Travel Retail exclusive collection next time you are passing through the airport but if you have no plans to travel in the near future you will find the current Highland Park domestic core range as well as some limited edition releases available from specialist online whisky retailers such as The Whisky Exchange, The Whisky Shop and Master of Malt

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