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Arran, The Bothy, Quarter Casks, 2017, Batch 3, 13,800 bottles, 53.2% abv.


Arran, The Bothy, Quarter Casks, 2017, Batch 3, 13,800 bottles, 53.2% abv.

Batch 3 was matured in first fill American oak ex-bourbon barrels of various vintages and then finished in American oak quarter casks for supposedly a minimum of 18 months. Not sure why it's called "The Bothy", perhaps something related to the prior released The Smuggler's Trio, which seems quite popular around the bar owner scene in Korea, but quite difficult to obtain.

Nose: honey glazed green grapes, white chocolate, some whipped cream, doesn't smell like > 50% abv.

Palate: a little dry, initial palate is a little bitter and some sweetened wood, mid palate is wood, background of bitter fruit, wood, cereals, sweet graham crackers, essentially malty elements, and the back palate has fruity wood almost like a fruity xmas cake with hints of smoke. Overall, weakly smoked grapes.

Finish: moderate, slightly dry, light burnt paper smoke residue, feels like wood but not in aroma or aftertaste.

For some reason I tasted less body compared to the younger Arrans I just had. I always thought the higher abv allows the flavors to flow through easier, but in this case I got mostly a woody/malty sweetness with a backend of smoke that doesn't quite fit well in any category. I felt it's fruit oriented with a sideshow of others, still quite enjoyable. Arran has improved greatly. Had this at Black Bar (formerly Mark T), Seoul, South Korea.

Grade: C+

Couldn't find reliable, quantifiable reviews.


Image courtesy of Eric Yee.


Eric Yee

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