Review #69: Rona’s Cask Port Charlotte 13 Year

This continues our series of whisky reviews that we wrote while touring some of the best scotch bars we have ever been to. The bar in question is the magical scotch treasure trove of Campbelltoun Loch, which is cluttered to the brim with scotch yet the owner Taketsuru-san amazingly seems to have memorized the location of every single bottle. I asked for Port Charlotte and he pulled about 5 different bottles scattered around the shop, some completely obscured from view in rows three bottles deep.

I need no persuasion to drink a sherry barrel cask strength Port Charlotte. I had an excellent Port Ellen earlier that night (Review #58), but this slightly edged out even that. This is pure love.


Tasting Notes

Nose: Love at first nose. Prunes raisins. Damp library books and bandages. It does singe the nosehairs so hard to detect everything thereafter. Perfumed cloud of cutie tangerines.

Palate: Christmas cake. Funky enough to highlight the pretty sherry sweet notes. Strong vanilla and dark currants and alcohol soaked raisin oatmeal cookies. Oily petroleum

Finish: Long lingering medicine and crushed clay


Overall: 9/10. Incredible.

Tldr;: Ancient library book dipped in prune juice.

Bought for: $20(?)/half shot at Campelltoun Loch. Don’t exactly know the price but it was worth it.

Quick overview of our scoring system. Note that we try to give a “5” for an average whisky, which is lower than standard whisky scoring guides (typically around 80).

Additional Information

  • Bottle 233/267
  • ABV: 55.5% Cask Strength
  • Age: 13 years | Distilled July 15th, 2004 and Bottled March 2018
  • Cask: Refill Sherry hogshead (Cask No. 883)

About Rona’s cask

  • Rona’s Cask is a line by the “Islay Boys” independent bottler (Mackay Smith from Portnahaven and Donald Mackenzie from Port Charlotte). Their more famous line is the Barelegs and the Flatnose
  • Made only available during the 2018 Islay festival and sold for around 160 GBP
  • The name comes from a single cask bought by Donald’s mother and aged in the warehouse over the family’s garden for 13 years (hence its age). The proceeds all went to Rona’s retirement funds.

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