Please contact me here to comment on any Dram-atics article, I'll include as many replies as possible





in the



After our Islay holiday in July we spent the last evening in Linlithgow before our following-day flight back to Munich. This was my first visit to what I found to be a beautiful city and I come away determined that it won't be my last.

I've tried some expressions of Linlithgow & St. Magdalene before which I've really enjoyed. I just love that typically light and floral style, sometimes with a little grassiness and sometimes surprisingly powerful. Imagine my delight when during this year's Limburg festival I was presented with four more examples from someone who loves the distillery even more than I do and specialises in their offerings. Slàinte Tomas!

Of course the distillery no longer exists after it became one of the infamous casualties of the bean-counters during the 1980s economic downturn, specifically closed in 1983 and the land sold for property development. Unlike some long-lost distilleries it is clear to see where this one once stood proudly as the apartments it was converted into still have the pagoda roofs and extol a distillery character, at least from the outside.







But what about the whisky?

The four samples I mentioned are:

Linlithgow 23y, 1982-2006 Duncan Taylor "Rarest of the Rare" 61.4%

St. Magdalene G&M, bottled for USA

Linlithgow 22y, Signatory "Silent Stills", 2.6.1975 - 28.5.1998, 51.7%

St. Magdalene 31y, Hart Bro's, 1982-2013, 53.5%




Linlithgow 23y, 1982-2006 Duncan Taylor "Rarest of the Rare" 61.4% With a very lightly golden colour and an initially quite floral nose this appears to promise much. The nose expands to include some lightly herbal and grassy notes alongside the flora to grow into a beautifully typical Linlithgow. After some minutes vanilla and melon(?) ice cream join the party. The palate offers even more of the ice creaminess, lots of lightly herbal flora and a growing tingle. That tingle screamed "add some water" to me and just three drops totally altered the experience, making it more creamy with a hint of almost coconut liquorice, but much less floral and maybe even a little more grassy. The finish was always very long and my overall impression is of a very good, quite typical Linlithgow. 87 Points.


St. Magdalene G&M, bottled for USA This St. Magdalene is more dark golden in colour and offers an immediately more grassy nose with less perfumed flora. An almost tropical fruitiness slowly develops over some minutes as I detect perhaps passion fruit, maybe even a hint of papaya and some definite banana stem. Is that a very faint hint of ginger too? The palate personnifies the nose with passion fruit and banana stem and with three drops of water actually increasing the flavours but deadening the nose somewhat. The finish is again long although my overall impression is of a slightly one-dimensional whisky and not as complex or 'open' as the previous one. 86 Points.




Linlithgow 22y, Signatory "Silent Stills", 2.6.1975 - 28.5.1998, 51.7% Back at a Linlithgow and once again the colour is very light, perhaps straw-like. The nose is initially almost lightly metallic but soon turns more grassy and only very slowly develops a light background fruitiness slightly reminiscent of raspberry or cherry. The whole effect then quickly fades. The palate actually concentrates more on the fruitiness which is now more cherry than raspberry, in fact this continues long into the finish. Even though this is just over 51% I really don't feel the need to add water. The finish is again long but my overall impression is one of gentle fruitiness but not greatness. 85 Points.


St. Magdalene 31y, Hart Bro's, 1982-2013, 53.5% Finally a 31y expression from Hart Brothers and possibly the lightest in colour of today's four drams. The nose gives an immediate and massive burst of something almost medicinally herbal .. camphor? No, not quite but certainly along those lines. This fades over some minutes to offer a suggestion of bread dough or cake mix about to go into the oven. The palate is quite powerful with lots of liquorice (root) and again a hint of background coconut. The finish is again long and primarily one of slowly fading licrice root. My description might appear strange, but this is a whisky I really like, both for the aromas and flavours and also for its quite unique-ness. 87 Points.






A selection of previous Dram-atics highlights

This section is a work in progress and will eventually replace the textual 'recent features' below.



Islay Revisited

Autumn 2013 Speyside

An annual Pilgrimmage

MMA 2013 Unplugged






Recent major features (A full list of all Dram-atics articles may be found in my ToC)  
May 2013 Duelling Drams - Man vs Clipper, Limburg Crooks & Nannies  
April 2013 100 points - Perfect Percy, Eggs-otic Isles Egg & Mug, Sixy bunny  
March 2013 International Whisky Day - Raise a Glass & Raise Awareness  
February 2013 A Horse, A Bow & a Dear, Karui-WOW-Ahhh  
January 2013 Glen-CLASS-augh, Fab Fo(u)rties, Glen-DROOL-nach  
Autumn 2012 The Olympkins, Getting old and Grainy  
July 2012 Motor Maniac meets Malt Maniac, Nosing New Make  
May-Jun 2012 Limburg - Whet Dreams, Dalmore Constellation, Independence? MM 15y Scotland, Blend of Maniacs  
Mar-Apr 2012 Investment grade madness, Glenglassaugh, 5th IWD, 1000th Review, April Fool, Going dotty, age verification  
Feb. 2012 It's a rum old do, Growing old gracefully, Four Imperial sisters  
Jan. 2012 Onwards & Upwards, Canadian Whisky Awards  
Dec. 2011 MMA 2011 Winners, HP 70's Orcadians, Debussy plays Pitaud, Class of 64-65, Elementary my dear Sukhinder  
Sept-Nov 2011 Malt Maniacs Awards 2011 - A weekend in the life of a Postmaster General  
June-Aug 2011 Bits Bytes & Drams, Glen Garioch 1994, Angela D'Orazio - Mackmyra, Trinity of Two Earls, Drams at Dawn
May 2011 Don't bug me with ads, A dram fine evening
April 2011 Cry me a River, Golden Oldies, The Shackleton Legacy, Two Weddings and a Whisky
March 2011 Masters of Photography, Memory and the Middle Cut, Sampling again, Dave Stirk 5, Choosing choice Choices
Feb. 2011 Festival time again, Spam Galore!, Drams & Trams

Jan. 2011

Lookback at 2010, New Job? Three Thirties, ToC, Overdosing on sherry casks






© Copyright 2009-2014 by Keith Wood - All rights reserved - Whisky-Emporium