In a nutshell: A full, rich and spicy Highland single malt matured in ex-sherry casks.
The lowdown: This is part of Diageo's 'Flora and Fauna' series of single malts and one of the few Blair Athol distillery bottlings to be seen. It has a deep, rich, malty quality rounded out by spices, oak with a definite hint of sherry. There's also slight hint of minty herbs and a clean dryness on the finish. It's a really interesting whisky with an unusual slight sweetness in the aftertaste.
The central Perthshire town of Pitlochry sitting on the banks of the River Tummel has been the home to one of the oldest legal whisky distilleries in Scotland since 1798 and which adopted the name Blair Athol in 1825. It fell on hard times during the economic depression of the 1930s and ceased production from the until 1949 during which time it had been purchased by the well known blenders Arthur Bell & Sons. With Bell's becoming the UK's top selling blended Scotch a lot of Blair Athol's output went towards this and meant the distillery grew in size during the 70s and 80s and it was at this time that interest in single malt bottlings started to increase and when they began to release their own expressions on to the market.
These days most Blair Athol single malts are from independent bottlers apart from the distillery's own bottling which is marketed as part of Diageo's Flora and Fauna range.