Exploring the Complexities of Highland Park 12: A Single Malt Whisky from Scotland’s Northernmost Distillery
Highland Park single malt whisky 12 years is made in Scotland’s northernmost distillery, in the Orkney Islands, amid a wild country full of herbs and wild flowers, driven by salty sea winds. It’s a haven for folks who appreciate quiet, meditation, and large-mouthed whiskies.
We’ll tell you right away: the Highland Park 12 distillery’s entire line is amazing; they’ve been creating only great distillates for over 200 years. There are recurring characteristics that distinguish Highland Park whiskeys. First of all, the peat on these islands is strong and decisive, but it is used with skill and never makes the smell too strong. It takes more than an Ardbeg to comprehend us.
Then there’s the terroir, the sea, and herbs like heather, which is native to Scotland and is used to make honey and the famed Drambuie.
Then there’s the underlying softness provided by the oak barrels used for refining, which are usually barrels previously used to make Sherry.
When you combine all of this care, all of this love, with a one-of-a-kind sensibility and exquisite craftsmanship, the result is incomparable.
You will not only learn to appreciate Highland Park after tasting it, but you will also identify it. And this is a positive indication; they are not trivial, stylized single malts that might have been made elsewhere but only on the outskirts of the planet. Of course, they are not given away, but among the range of 12 to 40 years, you will only find masterpieces.
And tasting the Highland Park 12 leaves us speechless and happy. Because 12 is the first product offered, the entry-level base whiskey, yet there were base whiskeys like this!
Peat, salt, musk, and a sophisticated spice come together to make a charming symphony with a catchy rhythm. Herbaceous and honey scents are always present in this excellent distillate and make it smell even better. The line is crisp, pulpy, and never sloppy. Finish with citrus, peat, and dried fruit. Outstanding peat-oakiness balance, with such a distinct and defined profile.
It has a lively mouthfeel, with dark aromas of tar and hazelnuts that pursue each other feverishly. The honey blends with the heather, the flowers appear lightly behind the peat, and the finish is smoky with a caramel arabesque. What amazes me is the poise and variety with which she can put on a thousand different expressions without losing measure or exaggerating. Despite its strength, it is round and smooth.
Highland Park 12 Price
50 euros. To call it an entry-level whiskey is heresy; it pays off many more famous whiskeys, but what counts most is that it has substance and character to spare. In a nutshell, it is one of the best whiskeys available for under 50 euros.
Desserts such as trifle, chocolate, salmon terrine, brisket and pulled pork, chocolate salami, and apple pie are spooned.