Deep in the Highlands of Scotland you can find The Distillery where some incredible Scotches are made.
It was originally founded by Alexander Matheson in 1839 and was sold to the Mackenzie Brothers, Andrew and Charles, in 1867.
It was the Mackenzies who gave the distillery their stag emblem and who drove to make it the success it is today.
Malts from The Dalmore routinely sell for well into the thousands and they have created some of the most expensive drams in the world.
Most recently joining this award winning family are three new Port expressions, with vintages ranging from 1996, 1998 and 2001.
Each expression has been matured in an American oak cask, before being finished in a tawny Port pipe. These pipes have been specially selected from win makers W & J Graham’s, who are based in Duoro in Portugal.
The 1996 expression is the oldest of the three and is a wonderfully smooth Whisky. It has been matured in pipes that held Port for 30 years
It opens with a nose of sweet nuts smothered in caramel and a lovely dark coffee flavour underneath. These flavours mix together perfectly, with the slight bitterness of the coffee combining with the warming sweetness of the caramel.
Hazelnuts and pralines take over and really express themselves on the nsoe.
They come through on the palate as well, this time with a spicier quality. Ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg appear and give depth to this dram.
There is also a lovely fruity quality on the palate, filled with figs, raisins and apricots. These go well with the nuts and spices, making for a refined and complex body.
The caramel becomes almost like butterscotch and the pralines and hazelnuts are joined by almonds.
The finish is equally as complex, with lots of sweet and spicy notes coming out. The nuts become richer and adapt a slightly oak tone here.
The 1998 is next in line and it has been finished in pipes that held Port for 20 years. Again, this is a wonderfully smooth dram, with lots of character to it.
The nose opens with summer berries and tangy orange peel. There is a soft white sugar note that also comes out.
The fruit and the sugar melt together to become sticky and sweet, with marmalade and blackcurrant jam appearing.
The palate takes these and blows them up, with lots more fruit and a wonderful dash of honey.
The flavours become slightly darker and thicker, with dried fruit, marzipan and treacle coming through.
This dram has a rich body that bursts with taste. The sugar from the nose gives a lovely sweet tang to the background that really makes it come alive.
The finish combines everything in harmony, with the honey and fruit taking the foreground.
Finally we have the 2001 expression, which has a spicier start than both the 1996 and the 1998.
It opens with lots of cinnamon and allspice dusted over ripe citrus fruits and dark chocolate.
The chocolate is thick and creamy, with a slight hint of bitterness to it. The fruit offsets the bitterness perfectly, giving it a nice background to bounce off.
The palate is decidedly sweeter than the nose, with big fruit flavours, warming cereal notes and a dessert like quality to it.
Dried raisins, figs and apricots give it a chewy mouth feel, and the spices make it lovely and warm.
Cherries and almonds appear, to add to the sweetness and are joined by more chocolate notes that add a creaminess to the overall feel.
The finish is strong, with a caramel sweetness and one final note of cinnamon heat.
Bravo Richard and his wonderful team, The Dalmore Port Finished range is fantastic.