Exile Casks – The Trojan

Neil and Joel

After bumping into Neil and Joel at the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival a couple of weeks ago, I was reminded that the result of their most recent escapades was still sitting patiently in my sample cupboard ready to be tasted (yes, I have a sample cupboard… dahling). With all the humdrum surrounding the festival and the fact I generally try to pack 10 days worth of life into a 7 day week, it meant I totally missed the boat with this whisky, as it’s now sold out online. However, that just goes to prove how successful the launch of Exile Casks has been.

Neil and Joel set up Exile Casks to allow them to go, in their own words, “on a journey of discovery, searching out the most unusual of all whisky casks, the ones that had just got forgotten, destined for blends that no longer exist, set aside for customers that went out of business or that had simply fallen off stock records”. The result of the chaps’ cask hunting adventures has led to their first release, a 25yo single cask, cask strength bottling, with a second release waiting in the wings. Called ‘The Trojan’, because the new make from one distillery was filled into a cask from another distillery, it’s cask #3110, a refill bourbon hogshead filled in 1990, from an undisclosed Speyside distillery.

As I said, this whisky has now sold out online, so if you see it in a bar, such as The Quaich Bar at The Craigellachie Hotel, then grab yourself a dram while you can – the lads have uncovered a gem with this one, and if this is a taster of what’s to come, their future releases will undoubtedly sell out even quicker than the first.

The Trojan
25yo Speyside
306 bottles only

Nose: Big, rich and sweet to begin – muscovado sugar, dates, treacle, orange marmalade and macerated cherries. Delish. Then the oak pervades – nutmeg and mahogany – before notes of burnt toast, cigar and dark chocolate come through.

Palate: Dark and brooding. Dark cherries, rum soaked raisins, sultana cake, sweet earth, cinnamon, red currants, wood spices and dark chocolate all vie for attention.

Finish: Some leather, red currants and oaky notes linger alongside tea leaves and cocoa.

Overall: This a tremendous find. If the liquid had been left to mature for much longer, I’d have feared for it being swamped by the oak, but it’s perfectly balanced and offers huge depth and complexity of flavour. No bloody wonder all 306 50cl bottles were snapped up for the remarkably cheap price of £65. Hats off chaps, hats off.



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