In 1892, John Morrison noticed that his newly acquired ‘Knock’ estate was not only surrounded by fields of golden barley and bountiful peat bogs but it also had a beautifully clear and pure spring running from within it. It didn’t take him long before he’d had the water analysed and determined it, and the surrounding produce, was perfect for whisky production. The nearby construction of a rail line provided the all important route to market and thus the ‘Knockdu’ distillery was born. This months malt – the anCnoc 12 year old.
Opened in 1894, the Knockdu Distillery embodied the ‘modern era’ of whisky production in Scotland. The distillery still prides itself on producing ‘ refreshingly modern’ whiskies and has, since it’s inception, done things just a little differently. This is reflected in the distillery itself having a name different to the whisky it produces. Rather than the distillery, anCnoc (pronounced ‘a-nock’) is named in the gaelic for the nearby ‘Knock Hill’.
An amber gold, due to the caramel added, pretty hard to tell if it is aged in bourbon, sherry or both. Barley sugar and good peat on the nose. Fruit intensity initially on the palate, really rich. Secondary, Tertiary flavours after that pineapple, sweet n sour, liquorice aniseed, mandarin rind, then a dry steel long, long finish. The oak character is a mild sherry with bourbon barrels, but probably second fill which would make the whisky quite pale if it wasn’t for the caramel, which probably explains why it is added. There are plenty of flavours in the AnCnoc 12 year old without the need for lots of oak to fill in the gaps. It’s a full flavoured, multi layered whisky.