Our whisky road trip 2016 lead us to the Orkney Islands, where we were invited to have a look at the Highland Park distillery. A surprisingly small, but very capable distillery, at which almost everything is done by hand, including a large amount of the kilning of their barley. I am wandering off a little here, and I have absolutely no bridge to the whisky in front of me, other than that I sampled it from the bottle in the tasting room at the distillery. The ICE edition is a 17 year old Highland Park, predominantly matured in ex-bourbon casks, quite uncommon for Highland Park. First in a series of two, where the other is called the FIRE edition.
53.9% abv, €230
Nose: initially there is a whiff of sweet white wine and a touch of fresh mango fruit. A handful of spices with cinnamon, nutmeg and mace, with a hint of smoke and eucalyptus.
Palate: Sweet and creamy mango fruit and fresh vanilla pods with a hot and spicy layer of cinnamon. Liquorice root and a kick of fresh ginger upon swallowing.
Finish: more spicy cinnamon and ginger last for quite a while, with a creamy layer of smoke.
Conclusion: Quite a ride we have here. The kick ginger is a nice surprise, but then, I like fresh ginger better than may be good for me. I cannot say if it is worth the high price, that is something you will have to decide for yourself, after you have already decided you want it in your collection.