|Picture: The Whisky Exchange|
When Highland Park presented the first whisky from the Walhalla collection, Thor, it was instantly clear that Loki, professional mischiever and shapeshifter among the gods, would move heaven and earth to take its place beside Thor.
His shapeshifting character was the inspiration for the flavour profile of its liquid alter ego. Born out of European and previously peated casks (Does HP have unpeated casks?), the aromas perceived on the nose and the palate should differ from each other.
Identity Card Highland Park Loki
- Official bottling from Highland Park Distillery, Orkney
- 15-year-oldsingle malt Scotch whisky
- Alcohol: 48.7% ABV
- Outturn: 21.000 bottles
- Second of four whiskies in the Walhalla collection
Nordic Janus having a winter BBQ
Colour: Loki hides in a golden layer of mist and leaves slow thick legs on the glass. He is slightly paler than his predecessor.
Nose: The nosing sets off with a light smokiness. The smoke is brought to balance by aromas of rock sugar syrup or golden syrup and orange marmalade. It even reminds me a bit of Cranachan, the classic Scottish dessert made with caramelised oat flakes and raspberries.
Giving it some time in the glass, this Highland Park releases more spicy flavours. Elixir d'Anvers (an old ladies drink with lots of herbal and spicy notes), anise, fennel and maze.
Oranges, mango and liquorice manifest themselves when adding some water.
Taste: The palate is deliciously creamy. Key lime pie with ginger and shortbread. A sandalwood cigar box with grain biscuits and ripe yellow apples. Did you know there's an apple cultivar named after Odin?
Water enhances again the fruity flavours. Yet these alternate constantly with pepper and cardamon. Just lovely how the flavours are constantly switching between sweet and spicy.
Finish: The finish is ridiculously long. Coconut charcoals and bananas with whipped cream and a splash of rum on the barbecue. Sweet notes of cinnamon, vanilla and orange rind. A dash of pepper and again lovely fresh notes. I'd say lemongrass.
ConclusionLoki is a high-end whisky from Highland Park. The price at launch day was approximately €175 and is rather high for a 15yo cask strength. This is a bit out of my regular bottle budget. And yet this 'limited' edition sold surprisingly good. A lot of them will end up in collections, others will be opened, and rightly so.
Highland Park delivered a cracking whisky with Orkney characteristics. I'd love to see this whisky reincarnate as a permanent budget version (read: without the wooden frame and the over-the-top storytelling).