Initially attracted by the price reduction, I was then drawn in by the 16 year maturation in first fill American oak cask and and the 60.2% strength. So before I knew it the Glenlivet Nadurra was in my shopping basket.
Nadurra is the Gaelic for natural, and this expression is named for “natural” spirit that has not been chill-filtered and then bottled at cask strength. I’m normally not that bothered about chill filtration, however after tasting the difference between the chill filtered and non chill filtered version of the Aberlour 14 yo it has been something I’ve been eager to explore.
The colour was a wonderful straw yellow, almost shining in the glass. The nose was surprisingly smooth and gentle for such a high alcohol concentration; was soft and gentle, with hints of white chocolate, sweet floral notes and a slight woody edge.
The taste was wonderful; green fruit (was it pears?) was followed by a real sweetness. It was delicious and did not feel like a cask strength whisky, having a short and gentle finish.
And then it grew and grew and grew; like a fire growing in my mouth my wife said! I could feel it in my chest and it went on and on and on. It was not unpleasant but this is probably not a whisky for the faint hearted!
A dash of water tamed it slightly but not a lot. The nose became more floral and the taste grew in sweetness, with a subtle hint of vanilla developing. The finish was still long and satisfying, still there 15 to 20 minutes later along with the taste. A sweet coating was left on the lips that hung around for ages.
This is a very pleasant dram, and one of my new favourites, confirming that I am turning into an “American oak head” rather than a “peat head” or “sherry head”.