Highland Park, 1995
REGION – Orkney Islands
NOSE – Sharp, perfumed with hints of dry grass. Hint of lavender and heather.
PALATE – Sweet and cloying with spicy flavours – cumin. Hay and pine wood elements. Warming.
Built in 1798, Scotland’s most Northern distillery is set on the site where the infamous illicit distiller, Magnus Eunson’s bothy used to stand. Magnus, a minister, was informed his church was to be searched by the excise men. He ordered the casks to be taken to his house whereupon they were disguised as a coffin. Where the excise men burst in they found the family kneeling in prayer beside the ‘coffin’ – the mere mention of smallpox was enough to stop the men enquiring any further.
Highland Park continues to malt its own barley using traditional floor malting method and to kiln dry the ‘green’ malt using peat cut from its own moorlands. One of the few distilleries where you can still see and smell smoke wafting from its pagoda-style chimneys.