Macallan 1824 Series: Sienna & Ruby

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After lots discussion regarding Macallan’s new concept (read here and here to catch up), I’m going to get to something that I have always stated should be the most important part; the liquid. We could talk forever about whether we think Macallan’s strategy is the correct one, but really, the most important thing is if the whisky is good enough.

Having already tasted Gold, today I’m going to taste Sienna & Ruby. Amber will come last, as I think it will be good in a cocktail, so it gets an article to itself.

Macallan 1824 Series
Sienna 
Ex Sherry Casks
43%Abv
Buy at Royal Mile Whiskies for £66.95

Nose: Tangerine, apricot, apples, very summary while at the same time, being syrupy. Honey suckle and slight cinnamon note.

With water: More oily, orangey, lemony and more tannic.

Palate: Tannins, spice, oranges and a slight toffee note. It has a nice fullness with an initial burst of sugar and slight berry notes.

With water: Lovely orange, tangerine and peach notes, with a slight leaning to tropical notes, bananas and syrup.

Overall: It’s my favourite of the range. A great combination of sherry notes, fruity notes, a syrupyness and Macallan’s complexity.

Macallan 1824 Series
Ruby
Ex Sherry Casks
43%Abv
Buy at Royal Mile Whiskies for £120

Nose: Pedro Ximinez raisins, marsipan, apricot and honey. All the right notes are there, but they are all slight notes. I am searching for them, rather than them punching me in the face.

With Water: More zest and a bit more chocolate.

Palate: Rich notes, pears and honey. But again, it almost seems a little flat and lacking a certain gutsiness.

With Water: More tannins, sherried notes and peach.

Sienna is the winner

Nearly half the price, double the complexity and flavour. Ruby is pleasant to drink, but it feels like it’s been overpowered by the sherry casks. Not enough whisky punch and panache remain.

Chris Hoban

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