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Drink Review: Highland Park Dark Origins

A sherried release from Highland Park, Dark Origins is a combination of 80% first fill sherry casks (of which 60% is European oak and 20% American) and 20% refill sherry. A dark expression which fits in with the distillery’s origins – founder Magnus Eunson being a smuggler who worked in the darkness of night.

Highland Park Dark Origins Review:

Nose:

Bitter chocolate, chocolate coated red apple, allspice, a touch of cinnamon and a pinch of pepper. A definite sherry bomb with a touch of smoke.

Taste:

A rather flavor some and sweet sherried dram in contrast to some of the heavily peated, more heavy hitter Highland Park malts. Dark fruit, jam sponge and dark chocolate.

Finish:

A bit short in the finish. Bitter chocolate with fruit and a touch of pepper.

Overall:

A good sherry bomb with some excellent varietal character. Spice and fruit underneath the dark chocolate. It’s also worth noting that as an 8 year old whisky this is fairly young still.

Highland Park Dark Origins Review: 

A friendly bottle, slightly spicy chocolate malty notes with some fruity notes and a slight smoke in the finish. A good one.

Beautifully aromatic, fruity dark chocolate, nutmeg, cinnamon and a hint of orange. Very moreish.

Nose:

Intense little bit of sherry bomb, with raisin and dried fruit notes. More of a warming feel here rather than outright sherried.

Taste:

Similar to the nose, a balance of hints of sherry, raisins and dates.

Finish:

Hot. Again there is a slightly warming feel in the finish, which is a result of the relatively young age of the whisky.

Overall:

Undoubtedly a more approachable dram if you’re new to the Highlands than some of the peat laden expressions on the range, this is a good introduction indeed.

Highland Park Dark Origins Review:

A nice little sherry bomb, more towards fruity rather than sherry, it’s nice and malty at the same time.

A very closed bottle, I detect some light smoke, orange peel, a light hint of spice and raisins. The nose had a raisin/date/caramel type aroma.

Nose:

An aromatic, warm and buttery nose with sweet and nutty notes. Raisins, apricot, dates and a light smokiness.

Taste:

Again a silky and smooth whisky, with an underlying smokiness. Sweet raisins and dates. The whisky is warming during the middle and finish.

Finish:

Long mouth filling finish. Raisins, cough mixture and a warming smokiness.

Overall:

A nice sherried whisky from a relatively low profile distillery as well. I might try some of the other offerings in the range now.

Highland Park Dark Origins Review:

Nice, fruity, malty dram. Some spices which give a vibrant finish. A bit more going on here than some of the other Highland Park releases.

Nose:

Sweet sherry, almond, raisins and dates.

Taste:

Palate filling finish. More raisins, raisin and dates with a touch of spice.

Finish:

The finish is easily the longest in the range, a touch of smoke and a dish of honey.

Overall:

Very good. Despite it being a fairly tame whisky it still hits the sweet spot at the end. Quite a lot going on here.

Highland Park Dark Origins Review:

An aromatic, peaty sherry bomb. Nose is peppery with some sherry notes, apricot and plum. As is the taste, with some citrus notes and a touch of herbs which give it a little bite.

Nose:

Nose is intensely peaty with some spicy notes and a hint of opium.

Taste:

Surprisingly smooth mouthfeel. The flavours are a little less bombastic than the nose would indicate, with some apricots and prunes giving a sweetness to the dram.

Finish:

Unfortunately the peat is too apparent in the finish.

Overall:

A decent whisky, though I’m not sure how much it beats a Glengoyne or Talisker for peat bombast.

Highland Park Dark Origins Review:

A soft fruity richness, hints of honey and almonds with a slight citrus zest at the end. The sherry spicy notes come through a little more here.

Bitter chocolate and raisins come through in the nose.

Finish:

Bitter chocolate and raisins with traces of pepper.

Overall:

A warm, malty drink.

Highland Park Dark Origins Review:

Sweet raisins, a little sherry and the pepper comes through a little more than I anticipated.

Highland Park Dark Origins Review:weet, raisins and malt in the nose.

Taste:

Perfect balance between sherry and malt, a little sweetness.

Finish:

Round and warming finish with a little salt.

Overall:

Great introduction to the Highland Park range for fans of Speyside whiskies.

Highland Park Dark Origins Review:

A slightly oily nose with a slight fruity side, dates and some drying tobacco. The palate is clean with citrus notes and a tinge of smoke in the finish.

Highland Park Dark Origins Review:

A nice spiced flavour of raisins, mint and some underlying sherry notes. The finish is long, salty, herbs and such. Hints of pepper, oranges and some sherry.

More of a dried fruits and raisins in the nose, with milk chocolate.

Taste:

A very nice mouthfeel.

Finish:

Quite a long finish with a great balance between sherry, honey and pepper.

Overall:

Nice whisky, finishes with a bit of a heat which may have been caused by the water it was fermenting in.

Highland Park Dark Origins Review:

Chocolate, raisins and dried fruits in the nose. As with the nose there is a slightly peaty side to this.

Taste:

Malty, and oily to the palate. That’s a sherry bomb with a slightly mineral taste to it.

Finish:

Raisins and the spiciness of the salt and pepper comes through.

Overall:

A very tasty whisky.

Written by Mark Adams

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