While the term “Valkyrie” is likely to be well-known to anyone reading this, a brief refresher seems to be in order, given the naming significance of this first of three special-edition Viking legend-themed whiskies from centuries-old distillery Highland Park. The Valkyries of legend served the Norse god Odin, descending from the heavens to gather the most courageous from among fallen warriors on the battlefield, deeming them worthy of entering Valhalla (yes, historians, there is a more grisly legend associated with Valkyries, but interested readers can find that one on their own, ‘cause we’re keeping things light here, okay?) After sampling this whisky, I’m convinced that the valkyries of lore would approve of this product.
This whisky fills its glass with amber, its bouquet driven by emphatic fruit in the form of juicy lemon and slices of ripened apples accompanied a drizzle of caramel. Supporting these elements is the fragrance of vanilla, which adds warmth and spice to the potpourri of aromatics at play.
When tasted, the whisky reveals a creaminess to its in-mouth texture, owed to flavor impressions of vanilla, dark chocolate, and faint banana. These are underlaid by spicy, smoldering cameos from the vociferous likes of cinnamon and ginger, with quieter anise notes peeping from amidst them like a younger sibling comforted by the presence of its bigger brethren. This whisky finishes warm and smoky as a beach bonfire on an August night full of stars, leaving echoes of charred wood and fruit in its wake after swallowing.
It bears noting that this whisky took home the Chairman’s Trophy in the 2017 Ultimate Spirits Challenge, with a score of 99 out of 100. Highland Park Valkyrie is a whisky that I would purchase without reservation (and aim to do soon), and is worth checking out if you’re an aficionado of premium, quality single malts. Highland Park Valkyrie will be followed by Valknut and Valhalla in 2018 and 2019 respectively.
Learn more about Highland Park Valkyrie at https://www.highlandparkwhisky.com/product/valkyrie/.
This article first appeared on FlavorfulWorld.com.