Country: Scotland
Region: Islay
Type: Single Malt
Bottler: Gordon & MacPhail
ABV: 40%
Score: 93 points

Connoisseur's Choice Port Ellen 1980. Photo ©2017, Mark Gillespie/CaskStrength Media.This rare Port Ellen single malt was bottled by Gordon & MacPhail in 1997, and the nose has a soft peatiness with touches of creosote, heather, honey, vanilla, driftwood, smoked salmon, and a hint of lemon zest. The taste has a citrusy tartness to go with the usual peat smoke and a good pepperiness that fades gradually to reveal notes of honey, butterscotch, vanilla, and heather with a great balance. The finish is long with lingering pepperiness and smoke balanced by a honey sweetness. Excellent! (November, 2017).

Editor’s note: Thanks to Davin de Kergommeaux and Frank Scott for sharing this bottle during a Port Ellen vertical tasting at the 2017 New Brunswick Spirits Festival.