Highland Park has just released Valknut, the sequel to last year’s Valkyrie. The distillery has partnered with Danish designer Jim Lyngvild to design the packaging.
As for the whisky itself, it’s said to be a “bolder, more intense style of Highland Park,” according to press materials. The whisky was mostly matured in American sherry seasoned casks. Additionally, this expression features a slightly higher phenolic level than Valknut and was partially made from Orkney-grown tartan barley. Valknut has been bottled at 46.8% ABV and is available for $80.
Love the nose here. It’s vibrant and aromatic, with hints of toffee, toasted almonds, vanilla, herbs, and heather. Taste-wise, Valknut is sweet, herbal, and a touch spicy. A small wave of vanilla pod develops into cloves and spice, which becomes a bit dry and slightly leathery. A nice smokiness becomes a bit bolder, especially towards the long finish. In fact, those spice and heather notes ramp us as well.
I like it, but tend to prefer Highland Park Valkyrie. I think that expression is a bit more sherry cask-driven and balanced than Valknut. It simply has more going on. The nose is fantastic, but it falls a bit short on the palate compared to Valkyrie. That said, Valknut is a great choice for those looking for an aromatic and spicy whisky. 7.5/10
Thanks to Highland Park for the sample. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.