Oban 12 Years Old Diageo Special Releases 2021 56.2% NV

€ 90,00 (ex Vat)
108,90 (in Vat)
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Distillery Oban
Bottler OB
Serie Diageo Special Releases 2021
Bottled for
Distilled date Not Specified
Bottling date 2021
Country Scotland
Region Highlands
Age 12
Cask Type Ex-Bourbon and refill Casks
Cask Number
Alcohol percentage 56.2
Volume 0,70
Condition In Original Container
Label Perfect

Professional reviews

BOW (87)


One of the prettier distilleries, in the very lovely town of the same name, is part of Diageo, and part of a lot of the special releases. This one was released in 2021 and matured in freshly charred oak casks. I guess this can also be described as ‘virgin oak’ since that is a sketchy description at best.

Generally Oban 14, their regular release, is considered to be a solid coastal Highlands whisky, even by veterans in this hobby, with thousands of whiskies behind them. It does a rather straight forward thing, but it does it well and it’s consistent. Not the most exciting, but always tasty.

Of course, that makes a special release all the more interesting, since there’s almost no Oban available other than the regular 14, the distiller’s edition and the Oban Little Bay. Of which the regular one is, I think, the best of the bunch.

The nose starts off with quite some roasted grains and charcoal. A hint of oak, and some peppery spiciness. Slightly resinous, with a hint of coconut husk, sawdust and dried treebark. Cinnamon too, maybe.

The palate arrives with a mix of syrupy texture, but also a bit of dry spiciness. Sawdust, apples and coconut. Black pepper, resin cinnamon. A strange jumble of flavors. The syrupy feeling also brings some sweetness to counter a slowly building chili heat.

The finish is a bit weird. It has a fatty greenness to it, which reminds me of tequila, with out any of its zestiness. Green, with sawdust, cinnamon and pepper.

The oak is, maybe surprising, not overly prominent. I think that’s a good thing, because that also leaves some room for the spirit to work its magic. Lovely notes of wood spices and fruit, while being quite a crisp and coastal whisky. Solid stuff!

Gal Granov (85)

Nose: Oban’s a distillery is a coastal one sitting a spit’s length from Oban ban, so it’s very fitting this one is going to have some coastal and maritime notes, and it does (well, it’ss an Oban), some salty notes, seat spray, mineral, with wet pebbles and perfumed ripe red apples, sitting on a sweet fresh dough pastry almost a hint of grappa perfume here if I might say so, a tad waxy as well which is welcome and maybe a note of pear financier cookies. A lovely beginning. With water, the faintest hint of green olives comes into mind.

Palate: A bit harsh and brutal entry: quite spicy with a lot of pepper, bitter toasted oak, orange peel, and bitter grapefruit pith, there’s also a salty saline-y touch to it, gone are the perfumed apples, and it’s really more forceful and not as gentle as one can expect from sniffing it. more vanilla and spices make for a not-so-complex palate, but still enjoyable. Feels a bit younger than 12, if I might say so.

Finish: medium length with a hint of smoke, and more olive brine, salt, and toasted oak. quite frugal.

Conclusion: A rather “Obany” Oban, a bit simplistic, with a brilliant nose, and a good palate and finish. If you’re an Oban fan, this one’s not going to disappoint, but hey at over 100 quid, not sure about VFM. I am not 100% convinced here.

Oban - 12 Years Old Diageo Special Releases 2021 56.2% NV

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