Douglas Laing's Rock Oyster Tweet Tasting

I was one of the lucky bastards to attend yesterday's Tweet Tasting under the guidance of Steve Rush (@TheWhiskyWire) and the Douglas Laing crew (Jan Beckers. Cara Laing and Chris Leggat). Six samples in a small box. Two of them were the new blended malt Rock Oyster. The others were three Old Particular whiskies and a Talisker 'Young & Feisty'.

A photo posted by Gert Claus (@tastydram) on

Whisky #1: Rock Oyster
Douglas Laing Rock Oyster

Blended islands malt, 46% ABV
Colour: Light yellow, white wine, leaves thin and fast legs on the glass

Nose: Salty sea air, a faint hint of nam pla (Thai fish sauce), salted lemon confit, light smoke and a little sweet. Butter and sugar. Matured cheese and the accompanying ammonia odour. Wood-stain. M&M's with salted peanuts. An ashtray washed out with seawater.
With water: mint, salted M&M's, chopped chili peppers

Taste: Salt and pepper, peat smoke is more prominent. Citrus and honey. Cigarette ashes.
With water: More peat smoke. Less sweet flavours and way more salt. Salted peanuts and ash.

Finish: Sweet finish with faint lemon confit. Aromatic wood, pepper and cigarettes.

Whisky #2: Arran 18

Old Particular series,August 1996, 48.4% ABV, cask #10529, 306 bottles
Colour: Light yellow, bleached straw, leaves thick and slow legs on the glass

Nose: Coconut, banana and vanilla. A faint hint of menthol or spearmint. Blood oranges, brown sugar, Tropical fruit juice. Candy store. A mix of fruit candies.
With water: Lemon, lemonade with ginger and sugar.

Taste: Creamy fruit mousse. Peaches. A soft bitter evolution with a bit of spicyness.
With water: Fresh citrus and spices.

Finish: A soft finish. Peaches and cream cheese mousse. A hint of mint refreshes the palate. A Trou Normand with peach sherbet.

Old Particular Bunnahabhain 17

Whisky #3: Bunnahabhain 17

Old Particular series,1997, 48.4% ABV, cask #10584, 306 bottles
Colour: Light yellow. Slow and thick tears.

Nose: Paint and Play Doh. clay, sweet smoke. Wet wood. Apples, fino sherry and cider. Sea salt, lavender soap and citronella candles. A lovely dirty Bunna!
With water: Oil lamp and a hot sauna.

Taste: Oily and smoky. Lemon and chocolate.
With water: Lemon and pepper. Creamy milk and oyster.

Finish: Oil, oysters and tobacco. Salted potatoes
#3 nose: Someone filled this sample in a paint factory? :-) #RockOyster
— Gert Claus (@tastydram) February 25, 2015

Whisky #4: Highland Park 18

Old Particular series, 48.4% ABV,
Colour: Light yellow. Slow tears on the side of the glass.

Nose: Honey, milk chocolate. coffee. Honey-glazed ham and leather. Red fruits; Fried icecream with a fruit salad.

Taste: Cinnamon and pepper. Honey. Dark chocolate. Werther's Original. Eclairs with crème patissière and coca cola.
With water: Cacao powder, ovaltine. Chocolate cake with caramel.

Finish: Creamy aftertaste with milk chocolate and vanilla. Hint of tobacco.
#4 nose: OMG! They (@DLaingWhisky) kidnapped Charlie from the Chocolate Factory! #RockOyster
— Gert Claus (@tastydram) February 25, 2015

Whisky #5: Talisker 'Young & Feisty'
Talisker 'Young & Feisty'

Provenance series, 46% ABV
Colour: Very pale. A white wine that's watered down. Lots of small thin drops appear but leave thick slow legs on the glass.

Nose: Bread dough. Spirit, malt and slightly metallic. Rubber, bicycle tires Old factory aromas. Ginger biscuits and sporting shoes. Lemon and seaweed.
With water: Sweet peat smoke and citrus.

Taste: Sweet with a pepper boost. Honey followed by citrus and salt.
With water: Medicinal. Rubbing alcohol and band aids.

Finish: Lemon rind, apples and salt. A warming and long finish.

Whisky #6: Re-Rock Oyster

A second tasting of the Rock Oyster could reveal some of the more hidden characteristics of the previous Island malts.
The chocolate notes from the Highland Park are more detectable now. And the Talisker still lingers around... And my mind must have been playing tricks. I got oyster juice when nosing my first glass again.


This was yet another fab tweet tasting by The Whisky Wire and Douglas Laing. The Old Particular whiskies were all top notch. And the Rock Oyster is a true and worthy family member of the Big Peat family. 
Hat tip to @TheWhiskyWire and the @DLaingWhisky gang for another fab tasting! #RockOyster
— Gert Claus (@tastydram) February 25, 2015