Skip to product information
1 of 1

Horny Pony

Arran 15y/o Rare Batch French Oak - Bordeaux Cask 52.8% 30ml

Arran 15y/o Rare Batch French Oak - Bordeaux Cask 52.8% 30ml

Regular price $24.00 AUD
Regular price Sale price $24.00 AUD
Sale Sold out
Shipping calculated at checkout.

Distillery Notes:

The Arran Single Malt in this bottling was fully aged in French oak casks which were
previously used to mature red wine from a revered winemaker in the Médoc region
north of Bordeaux. Our Arran Single Malt has been maturing in these precious oak casks for the past 15 years.

Limited edition of 2,580 bottles.

Tasting Notes:
Nose: At first whiff there are ripe dark berries with freshly rolled cigars. The
gentle tobacco aroma is embraced by the sweetness of vinous sultanas and cassis.

Palate: Afternoon tea with chocolate raspberry truffles, candied ginger, scones with clotted cream and orange marmalade and almond & cinnamon croissants. Silky and luscious tannins are a reminder of the elegant wine once contained in these casks.

Finish: Mouth-watering at first then getting a touch drier with plum jam and
mild spices.

View full details

Customer Reviews

Based on 1 review
Robert Madden
Arran 15y/o Rare Batch French Oak - Bordeaux Cask 52.8%

This is an updated tasting. I first had this limited edition (~3000 bottles) in an event offered by Australian “The Whisky Company” under the guise of “Age of Distinction Isle of Arran virtual tasting”. The tasting had seven 15 ml samples, Arran 10, 18, 21, 25, this 15 Bordeaux, 15 Argonne and a Machrie Moor. As the fifth sample of the night, and under the romantic notion of something very rare I think I may have been overly generous with the meagre sample I tried. I loved the Argonne on the night and wanted to explore it more, so tracked down a bottle. The Bordeaux didn’t capture me as much, but I was curious to give it a proper shot and the opportunity presented to get a 30 ml sample. The big difference here, the sample didn’t come in a juice bag like last time. It came in a glass bottle. Much better cricket.

N: Very oily, a little subdued generic red jam, a hint of very squishy almost fermented banana, a little cheap plastic-cola (the knock off brands, not Coca Cola; and flat cola at that).

P: Drying oak arrival, very wood forward rather than creamy or buttery (which is the note I like from French oak; the Chardonnay wood finish). Vanilla is subtle and comes forward more notably over successive sips. The Arran staple ginger adds warmth and a little zing. Some of the banana comes out as does some walnut-oily notes. The texture becomes a little more full but its still wrapped in dry tannins. The fruity sweetness is subdued. I recall a stronger red fruit profile, but i don’t get it now and its not as “popping” as I had it described from last time around. Dare I say it, I think Arran have delivered an OK to good palate. Nothing actually to write home about. At 52.8% I think this should do more, no?

F: Medium. A little cushiony softness but it is then immediately into dryness and astringency. The wood flavour on the exit is pleasant enough and there may be a berry fruit sweetness that arrives too little and too late.

A few drops of water and I find more of the berries, a little sourness possibly moving into cherry territory, and a sense of a buttery oak comes out. Much better than I recall from last time. I notice now that the water has made whats in the glass turbid and cloudy, like scrumpy cider from the old country. Water does interesting things here, the tannic dryness is subdued, buttery oak comes out, ginger becomes much sharper but with less heat. Malty, yeasty thickness develops. All sense of fruit is gone and mashed banana is the main sweetness. Finish becomes gingery warmth and thats about it.

Overall I affirm and double down on my previous statement that this spent much too long in contact with the French oak. the liquid is ultimately unbalanced and confused. I really don’t know what its trying to accomplish or where its trying to go. Everything is pulling in different directions, nothing is coming together to deliver what I have come to expect of Arran: excellence.

Arran will always hold a special place in my heart. It was where I took my very first geology field trip 20 years ago. Not long after the distillery opened, probably around when this stuff was laid down actually. I have loved all of the younger NAS age statement Arran’s but this retasting has raised two important questions for me: (1) will 15 ml ever be sufficient to actually taste and emote with a whisky, and (2) what is the effect of juice bagging a whisky sample over glass bottling? Please do discuss in the comments.

Previously rated at 4.0/5.0. Now, down to 3.0/5.0. I would have gone 2.75, but there is a lot of interest here that makes me want to drink it, nothing is off-putting, so it can take 3 stars.


7th July 2022
Fifth 15 ml sample of the night (5/7)

N- walnut oiliness, banana?, dried fruits, a savoury something (not sure what, but its good!). Dark fruits come out with more time in glass.
P- oak is magic, figs and dried fruits, almonds, pastry, vanilla. Damn, flavours are popping!
F- slightly soft and spicy, ginger again (clearly an arran staple), lingering jamminess and a few tannins.

Has it spent TOO long in this cask? possibly… probably. The oak is punching hard for sure, but; I’m not complaining. I would go as far to say that it lacks balance, but the cask is supremely showcased.