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Whisky Review : Auchentoshan 12

posted February 14, 2013 12:37 pm

Auchentoshan 12

Lowlands, triple distilled

Available at Real Canadian Liquor Store


I’m about to light some kilts on fire.

Having been to Scotland, and having some Irish blood in me, I think the Scots and the Irish share a few things in common.

Not in whisky, the factions would say. In Scotland, they distill their whisky twice; in Ireland, three times. Twice leaves more flavour. Three times yields a smoother drink – on and on.

But in Scotland’s least traditional whisky region, there’s a bridge across the North Channel – the only triple-distilled Scotch whisky.


Auchentoshan is more lace than leather. Those who love peaty flavour would find it weak and watery. But I’ve always been a fan of a more delicate scotch. The 12-year-old expression I’m sampling delivers a surprisingly strong alcohol punch to the nose, even though it’s bottled at a familiar and relatively low 40% alc/vol. But when the dram first touches the tongue, there’s a taste of soft butter. The texture matches: supple and a bit fatty. It’s not unlike the grease from eating a handful of peanuts. Salty nuts are the next taste mid-tongue. Not balls. Nuts. Sadly, the whisky dies there. The finish is mostly alcohol burn, leaving a bit of bitterness.

Despite it’s touch of buttery pleasure, I’m not sure Auchentoshan is a bridge worth crossing. A Jameson 12-year-old, in a similar price bracket, will give you something sweeter and smoother. A decent Speyside Scotch whisky would give you a more robust and defined set of flavours.





Richard Liebrecht, 28, is a whisky enthusiest coming to terms with his hipster nature. Once in a while, he likes to share his passion for Scotch on the Barber Ha Blog.