By Father John Rayls
This is a very unusual and very limited bottling of a 19 year old single malt scotch from an undisclosed distillery in Scotland for Chapter 7 in Switzerland. Did you get all of that? Yeah, it’s a little confusing. In addition, there were only 1076 bottles filled or was it 1130? No one is even sure about the exact number. The whisky bottles were filled from two (former) sherry casks at 113.4 proof which should be more than enough to get your attention. In 2014, Selim Evin created Chapter 7 in Switzerland with a concentration in bottling scotch from the less well-known distilleries. He eventually began exploring both scotch and Irish whiskies and the wonderful world of blending. “With a team of whisky experts, the final selection is the product of collaborations with fifteen different suppliers, service providers and trade partners.” Evin often purchases single casks to create his unusual offerings. This 19 Year Old Highland Single Malt is an exclusive bottling marketed only in the United States. Don’t be misled. Chapter 7 has garnered multiple awards at the highest levels. The Whiskey Bible also appears to be a big fan of their products.
The look is a pale yellow with flashing gold and white highlights. The legs are narrow, but sparse and appear only reluctantly. Even its appearance is rich looking and inviting. The nose rises to meet you in a most agreeable manner with only a light tingling. The aromas reflect the sherry influence with ample notes of fruit, floral and oak that create a magnificent expectation.
This is a complex single malt with multiple layers of aromas and flavors dancing on and off the palate and in and out of the nose. The mouthfeel was light which was a little surprising after all the preliminaries. The flavors of oak, floral and fresh fruit filled the mouth with some very nice medium warming effects accompanying them. Most of the action takes place mid-mouth and back encompassing both upper and lower parts of the mouth. The finish is long, satisfying and filled with heat. However, the heat never overstays its welcome and never rises to an offensive or shocking level. The finish starts at the back and slowly creeps forward with each sip. It eventually makes it all the way to the front including the tip of the tongue even onto the lips. This is a whole mouth experience that quickly captures your attention and your imagination.
Chapter 7 Highland 19 Year Old Single Malt Whisky is definitely a name you’ll want to remember. My expectations were low due to a very small sample size. But I can honestly say this is simply a very enjoyable and surprising whisky. Unfortunately, it’s a very limited supply offering and it reflects that in its price. I can not find it locally and pricing is all over the map on the Internet. Consider yourself fortunate if you can find a bottle for under $160.00. It is definitely out of my price range, but it is so enjoyable…