Littlemill 1988/2013 Berry Bros

Littlemill 1988

Distillery: Littlemill

Expression: 1988

Age Statement: 24 years

Vol: 52,3%

Extra Info: Cask #32, bottled by Berry Bros & Rudd


Littlemill is one of those distilleries with a mythical kind of charm to it. Everybody wants to own a bottle (or more) of Littlemill, even though most probably never even tasted it. I am one of those people. Owning a bottle from this distillery is like owning a piece of history. Founded in 1772 and eventually (after several closedowns and takeovers) dismantled in 1997. Every bottle now being sold goes up in value by the week, it seems. As mentioned, this will be my first go at a dram of Littlemill, thanks (again) to Thijs, who has provided me with quite a few gems lately. Time to give it a try;

Nose: Refreshing, with green apples and a bit of lemon. A bit of a dull, dusty whiff, like grandma’s attic (that’s a first). There’s also a coastal note to this, a salty hint of sea breeze. Even seaweed, with some imagination. Interesting. Some more light fruits now, maybe apricot. Dried grass, the kind they give horses. A little bit nutty as well. Very much a summertime dram, so far. Nice.

Taste: Lovely arrival. Vanilla sweetness followed by quite a sharp rush which then quickly tingles on into fruity sweetness. A bit oily, thick. Slight bitter notes of liquorice and (roasted) nuts. Very fruity now. Citrus I would say, lemon mostly. That might explain the slight bitterness. The prickly feeling remains throughout, which I find really fascinating. A cereal note now as well, but only a bit. Still a summertime dram, still nice.

Finish: Longer than I would expect from a ‘light’ whisky. The fruity/vanilla sweetness remains, the tingle on the tongue only dies out at the very end. Really interesting.

Overall: This is quite different. The dusty quality of the nose with the fruity sweetness in the taste combine surprisingly well and that sharp edge (especially in the taste) is the real hero of this dram, making every other flavour pop. This is not the best whisky I’ve ever tasted but it scores high on my ‘odd’ scale, which is always a good thing. Very enjoyable, very much wish I had a bottle of this.

Rating: 4 stars (86-90 points)

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