Diageo’s Distiller’s Edition takes some of the Classic Malts series and adds a secondary maturation period in fortified wine casks. Included in the series are Talisker, Cragganmore, Dalwhinnie, Glenkinchie, Lagavulin, and the subject of this review, Oban.
The finishing casks used in this series are recharred American oak casks with heavily charred virgin oak ends. The casks are then filled with fortified Spanish wine. After a month, the wine is disgorged and the casks are filled with matured malt. The finishing period lasts up to six months.
Oban is paired with Montilla Fino casks, which pairs well with the character of the western Highland malt. The combination brings hints of dried fruit and soft peat on the nose, as well as orange peel and seaweed. On the palate, a salted caramel base is complemented by layers of dried fruit and fresh citrus juice. There’s a touch of peat that creeps up on the mid-palate, and it melds together really well with the fruit notes. At 43% ABV, Oban Distiller’s Edition coats the palate really well. The medium-length finish sees a little dark chocolate, dried fruit, and toffee.
The added fruit and slight dryness the secondary maturation period adds works beautifully with Oban’s slightly peaty distillery character. Fans of Oban shouldn’t hesitate to reach for this. It’s really good. REALLY good. Pricing at $94.99 is about $15 higher than Oban 14, but it’s a worthy-enough upgrade.
Thanks to Diageo for the sample. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.