Review -A Pair of Indie Clynelish. 

Clynelishes? Clynelishi? I’m not sure of the plural but here is a look at two independent bottlings from what is fast becoming my favourite distillery.

Clynelish, IB, Adelphi, 19y.o, 47.1%abv

The nose is not what I expected. There is a slightly more tropical fruit feeling and a mild florality, which isn’t what I would associate with Clynelish. There is also a slight damp element here and some oak notes. There are the more waxy feeling elements underneath but I’m used to these being more dominant. Interesting…

The palate sees the strong emergence of the waxy, tannic and orange notes alongside some nice buttery and salted caramel tones. Again a surprise in store with the amount of vanilla which has just popped up.

The finish is quite smooth with the waxy feeling still present. There is a tannic and spiced tone here but also elements of pineapple and green banana.

The addition of water seems to really open this up. In fact I would say that it really improves it. Much more open and softer, with the vanilla and beeswax notes really accelerating. Definitely more mellow and approachable.


Clynelish, 24y.o, IB (Cadenheads) 44.7%abv.

Now its another surprising nose. There is definitely a fudgy undertone here but with some zingy citrus notes (orange zest mainly) and a sprinkle of lemon pepper and something reminiscent of linseed oil.

The palate is sweet and savoury, there is a great deal of heather honey along with the ever present beeswax and a dollop of salted caramel.

The finish is quite long and really just continues where the palate left off but with a nice added florality that I hadn’t noticed anywhere before.

Thanks to Johnnie Stumbler for the sample and the photo.

These are great examples of spirit from the same distillery, undergoing the same processes with the same ingredients but in the end the dark arts of maturation variances have yielded two entirely different drams.



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