The maritime malt – 11 years in an ex-bourbon hogsheads and an additional year in a 1st fill Sauternes barrique.
Nose: Cake mix, pancake batter, fried crepes and griddles waffles. Apricot reduction, maple and golden syrups sit with olive oil and pan fats whilst orchard fruits add a bright esteriness alongside preserved lemons. Dilution reveals a bolder cask influence with vanilla pods, toasted cereals and popcorn alongside ‘greenhouse’ viney savouriness and slight clay/beach mud.
Taste: The arrival is quite powerful and certainly oily in texture with fattiness and lubricants. Apples and citrus fruits sit with sponge cake, cupcakes and cream buns whilst vanilla and oats sit with slight chalkiness. Reduction adds lemon peels for an almost lemonade like zing.
Finish: Medium with creamy pastries and vanilla.
I’m in two-minds about this Pulteney. On the one hand, it’s completely fine for what it is – well-made, easy-going, and inoffensive. On the other, both the Sauternes, and the underlying distillate character seem completely lost at sea without a trace. This could be an 11 year old ex-bourbon SC from pretty much any distillery. Character is important, and this feels sadly rather generic and therefore a little uneventful.