Editor’s Note: This whisky was provided to us as a review sample by Diageo. This in no way, per our editorial policies, influenced the final outcome of this review. It should also be noted that by clicking the buy link towards the bottom of this review our site receives a small referral payment which helps to support, but not influence, our editorial and other costs.
The 2021 Diageo Special Releases are here. The latest collection strays from the repetitive Rare by Nature and delves deep into thematic fables, or Legends Untold. Eight legendary Scottish distilleries are featured in the Special Releases, and the collection includes some of the most expensive whisky since the 2017 collection.
The mythical creatures relate to the distilleries based on “the hidden gems that can be found in each corner of the Scottish terrain amongst the lochs and rugged highlands.” The Singleton of the Glendullan lays along the riverbank in Dufftown. Their onion-shaped stills help produce the fruity flavors that have inspired the legend. The Siren’s Song is a 19-year-old whisky, which is two years older than the 2020 Special Release.
So how did this legend arise? Well, as the fable goes, “deep in the waters of the River Dullan lived an ethereal Siren. A golden maiden, with the shimmering tail of a fish, known to sing a song of honeyed sweetness that drew listeners in to seek its beautiful source. From her touch, flowers and fruits sprung into ripeness, and from her tail, golden rivers flowed. The Siren’s song gave The Singleton its smooth and melodious nature— a Scotch born of slow craft, rich with the bounty of autumn fruit, caramel and spice.”
The Siren’s Song features a beautiful illustration of a siren sitting on the rocks gazing at an orange. Ken Taylor has captured haunting details of this legend with his masterful artwork. Diageo goes a step further with a QR code that unlocks an immersive tasting experience and gives life to Taylor’s illustration.
Tasting Notes: The Singleton 19 Year The Siren’s Song
Vital Stats: 54.6% ABV. Speyside single malt matured in refill American oak barrels and finished in cognac seasoned casks. 750ml $175.
Appearance: 18k gold
Nose: Caramelized pears greet the nose instantly. The fruit is vibrant, and grapefruit zest adds extra brightness to the nose. There is a vegetal note to the whisky similar to kelp or seaweed. Overall, there seems to be a lingering salinity that reminds me of salt water taffy or caramel popcorn.
Palate: The whisky is slightly smoked with pear touching the tongue first. Between the soot and heat of the ABV, the pear from the nose comes through. Honey sweetens the dram in the middle. Cinnamon and nutmeg spice up the whisky.
The Singleton 19 Year The Siren’s Song is one of my favorites in Diageo’s 2021 Special Releases. It has enough smoke and a balance with the sweetness. It does not disappoint.
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Courtney Kristjana is a leading whiskey taster in the country. She left a career in Gerontology after an article on Heather Greene inspired her to follow her passion for whiskey. She is studying to become a Master of Scotch and someday hopes she is nominated for the Keepers of the...