Kininvie 17 And 23 Compared

by Oliver Klimek on April 10, 2016

This weekend I had the opportunity to taste the Kininvie single malt for the first time. Together with my two whisky friends Klaus and Keith we tasted the 17 yo and the 23 yo bottlings that were released not too long ago.

kininvie17Kininvie 17 yo Batch 1


My Tasting Notes:

Colour: Medium amber
Nose: Toasted hazelnuts, green apples, gooseberry, wood polish, toffee, ground coriander, mace, hints of nutmeg .
Palate: Stewed apples, nuts, hints of green tea, coriander, hints of white pepper.
Finish: Long, slightly fruity and slighty spicy .
Overall: The nose of this is quite pleasant, but this does not really show on the palate.

Rating: 81/100 – Price Tag $$$$$ – Value for your Money $$$$$

kininvie23Kininvie 23 yo Batch 2


My Tasting Notes:

Colour: Medium amber
Nose: Less fruity than the 17 yo, somewhat musty, hints of camphor, apple in the background, a bit like opening an old cupboard drawer, difficult to pin down.
Palate: Again it is difficult to separate flavours, quite subdued  but with flashes of aromatic spices, the musty theme continues.
Finish: Medium long, mildy spicy .
Overall: Quite a complex whisky actually but hard to pin down at the same time. It felt a bit like trying to grasp fog.

Rating: 82/100 – Price Tag $$$$$ – Value for your Money $$$$$


All three of us were equally unimpressed by these bottles, and our scores did not vary very much. The general verdict was “daily dram” or “nice sipper”. And for this they are much too expensive.

It is not surprising at all to me that Kininvie has hardly ever been bottled in the 25 year old history of this distillery. This whisky was designed to be put into blends, and you can taste this. It has no distinct features that stand out but still has complexity, so it can tie the more distinctive malts in a blend together with the grain whisky base.

Whisky geeks have been begging Grant’s for years to bottle Kininvie, but up until recently they refused. But given the recent malt whisky boom it is no wonder that they finally gave in. The geek inside me can now tick off yet another distillery from the want list. But in all honesty, I can live perfectly fine without Kininvie.

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