Review: Highland Park Linn 40 Year Old Single Malt Whisky

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Highland Park Linn 40 Year Old Whisky
Highland Park Linn 40 Year Old Whisky

Highland Park Linn 40 Year Old Single Malt Whisky & Limited Edition Sondek LP12 (48.3% ABV, 96.6 proof £25,000 / $40,000)  Highland Park has bundled a  rare 40 year old expression of their whisky with a custom made Linn turntable (Sondek LP12) which is encased in a wood platform crafted from Highland Park oak casks. This release of Highland Park Linn celebrates the 40th anniversary of Linn Audio and is limited to just 40 units. Of course fourty thousand dollars (or £25,000) makes this offering something only the uber rich could probably afford.

While we didn’t have the ability to check out the turn table, we did get a chance to sample the 40 Year Old Highland Park Linn. Aged in refill casks (barrels which have been previously used to age Highland Park whisky), the dark golden amber color of Highland Park Lynn is a touch lighter than other whiskies of its age but Linn’s time in oak is unmistakable from the first whiff. Spicy oak helps define the nose on Highland Park Linn, which is more oak forward than many of the Highland Park Whiskies we’ve tried. Beyond the oak there are some nice layers of dried fruit including apricot, interweaved between layers of clove and cinnamon spice. There’s also a nice fresh iris flower note in the core of Linn’s nose that is quite nice. There’s so much going on in the nose of Linn and it’s so well integrated that it can be challenging to pick out individual aromas, this challenge is part of what makes Linn so special and so fun. The more you dig in the nose of Highland Park Linn the more there is to discover. Underneath the oak, fruit and spice is indeed a nice malt note, some un mistakable rancio and some very light smoke.

On the palate it’s clear just how special Highland Park Linn is, after an initial spike of oak there’s very clear rancio. This wonderful and ethereal flavor is the core of this whisky which swirls with a symphony of flavors including oak, ginger, vanilla cookie, iris, malted grain, honey, dried orange peel, salt and light smoke. The finish on Linn is long and slightly dry with a nice mix of smokey peat, oak and malt. Highland Park Linn is legendary whiskey and one of the best examples of the gems which are locked inside the vaults of some of the major whisky producers and probably would never see the light of day, were it not for extremely limited and special releases like this one.