I have often said that Longmorn is one of the most underrated whisky distilleries in Scotland; it gets good press, but not as much as some of its more famous neighbours garner. But that may all change now that a three-product range has been released. Introducing the new range of Longmorn single malt whisky.
On a lovely sunny, yet chilly Monday lunchtime in London a gathering of a few select whisky journalists gathered to have a luscious lunch in Claridges to celebrate the launch of a new range of Longmorn single malt whisky, a Speyside classic.
Trevor Buckley, the Longmorn Master Distiller, told us how existing Longmorn products are “traditionally the dram of choice for distillers, aside from their own”, and I can believe it, being a big fan of the now-previous iteration of the Longmorn 16 Year Old, one of my favourite whiskies.
Founded in 1894, the Longmorn Distillery has a rich history of crafting exceptional single malt Scotch whiskies. Built during the golden age of industry, its founder John Duff ensured it would emblemise his pioneering insight into craft distilling and use the latest technology available. Established to cater for a growing appetite for fine whisky and luxury, each bottle of Longmorn single malt reflects this dedication to innovation and excellence and has been crafted to offer the ultimate luxury Scotch whisky experience, the product of exceptional talent and precision.
Today was about the new though.
You can see from the pictures below that the meal was superb, with each course expertly paired with a one of the new range:
This was the first time I had tried the any of these whiskies, I had no idea what to expect but I have to say I was mightily impressed all round.
“Luxury, vanilla character” is how Trevor described the Longmorn distilled character, and each of these whiskies delivered that in spades.
Longmorn Distiller’s Choice – 40%, RSP $94
On the nose I was getting tonnes of vanilla, oak and sweetness, peardrops with the palate delivering sweet orange notes, juicy fruits and the finish was medium and lovely.
Longmorn 16 Year Old – 48%, RSP $252
This will replace the current 16 Year Old, and has a higher proportion of first fill bourbon casks in the maturation.
I did not get as much vanilla on the nose of this one, although I should have given the first fill input, but I did pick up a lot of sweet, creamy vanilla. This whisky was chewy, notes of dark fruit juices and sherry, orchard fruits chimed in too, as did bitter dark chocolate, followed by a long, dry finish.
The 48% ABV felt quite punchy, very impressive, and an improvement on the existing, although it feels wrong to say that about a whisky I loved so much.
Longmorn 23 Year Old – 48%, RSP $1,450
Trevor explained that it is bottled at 23 Year Old as this is the perfect age for a Longmorn to be matured and bottled, and boy was he right.
Stunning, beautiful, dry, fruity, caramel with heavy vanilla nose and palate. The palate was vibrant, juicy, mature, green apples, silky and all round brilliant with a super-long white peppery finish.
The packaging for the range is great, but the Longmorn 23 Year Old especially was impressive; the silver detailing, etching and heavy set stopper were a joy for a whisky packaging geek, all about the finishing touches.
As part of the renaissance of Longmorn today, each expression in the range is presented in distinctive packaging that better befits its quality and reputation; the glass bottles have high, broad shoulders, a long pouring neck and are largely transparent to showcase the quality of the whisky inside. Other modern luxury cues reflect the golden era of luxury and the Industrial Revolution, when the distillery was founded. Longmorn 23 Year Old, is presented in a lacquered wooden gift box, underpinning the indulgence of the portfolio.
All in all, a great new range of Longmorn single malt whisky, and hopefully now the whisky they produce will be seen for how great it truly is.