Highland Park Full Volume is a testimony to the similarities between music makers and whisky creators. Whereas a composer tries to find balance with equalisers, blenders look for that very same thing by blending different ages and types of casks.
The packaging of Highland Park Full Volume is inspired by the legendary old-fashioned guitar amplifiers from Marshall and Fender. The flavour profile of the whisky is brought to life with amplifier dials (peat, bourbon, vanilla, fruit, volume). To create some buzz for the launch of the whisky, Edrington's marketing dept. collaborated with Saul Davis to create a unique piece of music.
During 1999, some 481 casks – 200-litre barrels and 250-litre hogsheads – were filled at classic cask strength of approximately 63.6% ABV. The whisky was filtered at just over 4°C before being bottled at 47.2% ABV. It's a bit of an atypical Highland Park for it solely matured in ex-bourbon casks instead of sherry-seasoned casks.
Identity Card Highland Park Full Volume
- Official bottling from Highland Park Distillery, Kirkwall (Orkney)
- 17-year-old single malt (1999 vintage)
- ex-bourbon barrels and hogsheads
- Alcohol: 47.2% ABV
Tasting notesLooks: Yellow gold in colour. Like a white port or a pale Monbazillac. Small beads transform into rather slow thin legs on the side of the glass.
Nose: Honey and apple mingle with more exotic fruits such as a sun gold kiwi and mango. The smoke is heavily subdued, almost undetectable even. Ice cream with vanilla and bits of banana. Beechnuts and oak. Lemon and orange flavoured fruit candy.
With water: More apple and honey. A whiff of gin and tonic.
Taste: Sweet red apples, oak and honey. Orange marmalade. Barley and oatmeal. Crushed white pepper and creamy vanilla with notes of lemon.
With water: Sweet pepper, apple and kiwi. Some bitter and nutty flavours. Almost but not yet ripe bananas.
Finish: Fresh and sweet in the aftertaste with - finally - a whiff of smoke and honey. Oak and banana.
Full Volume is quite a different and unusual expression from Highland Park. The absence of heathery smoke and use of ex-bourbon casks would make this a target for the independent bottlers, yet Highland Park decided to bottle it as an official whisky.
The fruity notes are pushing the right dials (yes, pun intended) resulting in an excellent Highland Park for music lovers. The first 1000 bottles came with a 7" vinyl by Saul Davies.
Image & sample: Highland Park