"Of the three, I opted to buy the Three Wood. I honestly wanted to buy all of them, but alas, my wallet suggested otherwise that day."
Auchentoshan Three Wood Single Malt Scotch Whisky
NOSE: Honey | Vanilla | Orange Citrus | Sherry
TASTE: Dark Chocolate | Orange | Vanilla | Honey
FINISH: Long-lasting, with building oak and honey.
SHARE WITH: People who appreciate Scotch is greatly about finishing, that the Lowland region is greatly underrated, and enjoy unpeated Scotches.
WORTH THE PRICE: Absolutely.
BOTTLE, BAR OR BUST: From my one-word response to “Worth the Price” the answer should be obvious. Buy this bottle. It isn’t a limited edition, thankfully, is widely available, and very affordable. Auchentoshan Three Wood will have a permanent spot in my whiskey library.
OVERALL: I first tasted Auchentoshan early this year. It was a 17-year independent bottling sold exclusively at Vom Fass, and I fell in love. I felt an immediate need to find other expressions of Auchentoshan to taste what I’d been missing. I went to my favorite whiskey bar and tried the American Oak, the 12-year, and the Three Wood.
Of the three, I opted to buy the Three Wood. I honestly wanted to buy all of them, but alas, my wallet suggested otherwise that day.
What makes this Lowland Scotch stand out? Scotches are commonly twice-distilled. Auchentoshan uses a triple-distillation process, much like the Irish do, which creates a higher alcohol content with fewer impurities in the distillate. The Three Wood implies exactly that – Auchentoshan uses three barrels to age and finish the whisky. First, it is aged a dozen years in ex-Bourbon barrels. It is then transferred to age again in ex-Oloroso Sherry casks. Finally, it is transferred again for final aging in ex-Pedro Ximenez Sherry casks.
While all of that is nice to know, the end result is what’s truly important. In my Glencairn, the whisky was a deep, dark amber, and left a very thin rim on the wall. After several minutes, it created slow, fat legs to drop back to the pool.
Aromas of honey and vanilla exploded on my olfactory senses at chin level. When I raised the glass to my lips, orange citrus jumped in, and when I let it hover under my nostrils, the orange and sherry notes dominated. When I inhaled through my mouth, it was all honey.
The mouthfeel was thin but coated my palate. At the front, dark chocolate, a major food group of my food pyramid, blasted through. Mid-palate brought out sweet orange, which was quickly followed by vanilla and thick honey. It was sweet but not overwhelming.
The honey continued and was joined by oak that produced a long-lasting, building finish.
Some folks find medicinal or peaty qualities in some Scotches as something they don’t enjoy. Neither will be found in Auchentoshan Three Wood. I love peated Scotches. I love unpeated Scotches. This one is something very special and so long as it isn’t radically changed down the road, it will have a permanent spot in my whiskey library.