Aberfeldy Scotch

By George Brozowski

I believe that after almost 50 years of scotch drinking, I finally stumbled upon a theory that might just help anyone pick out a decent scotch. The secret is in the brand name. If it's difficult to pronounce, can't easily be spelled, and the name is almost impossible to remember then it must be really good scotch. Aberfeldy scotch seems to meet those criteria, so let's explore and see if this offbeat theory holds true.

John Dewar and sons founded the Aberfeldy Distillery way back in 1896, and except for a couple of brief shut downs during the world wars, it has been in continuous operation since then and is the largest malt whiskey component of Dewar's blended whiskeys. In 1999, they first started bottling Aberfeldy single malt. They may have waited that long because 90% of their production goes into blending the Dewar's brand.

The bottle comes in a cylindrical cardboard container done in black and gold and the label gives some interesting historical highlights of the distillery and the Scotch inside the bottle. The scotch is a deep golden color attributable to those 12 years spent in oak. The nose is a very soft combination of butterscotch, peaches, honey, just barely there peat, and very faint oak traces. Overall, this is one seriously laid back nose. On the palate, the peat and scotch flavor take front and center followed by citrus and then the oak. The finish is quite smooth with the oak moving up a bit, followed by the citrus and concluding with a spicy after note. The finish is medium in length leaving a nice spicy feel and a slight smoky cigar taste that makes me want to go get my Cohiba and light it up.

This is a very smooth, very light scotch that hits all the right notes without being overbearing or overly complicated. Dewar's Aberfeldy 12 year old scotch will set you back $43.99-$49.28 per 750ml bottle, and it weighs in at 40% ABV. If you can remember how to spell it, pronounce it, and not forget its name, you should get you some of this single malt scotch; you won't be disappointed.

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