92 POINTS for The ImpEx Collection 40 Year Old 1980 Blended Scotch Whisky

“Bales of aged tobacco, damp autumnal leaves, aromatic backyard bonfire smoke, barrel staves soaked in aged sherry, dried fig, prune flesh, milk chocolate, and polished antique wood grab the attention of the olfactory system. Deep wells of concentrated dark fruits give this a studied intensity, with chocolate-hazelnut ganache, date, plum, and a dry finish reminiscent of barrel char and oak tannins. Majestic, one might say.” 

Whisky Advocate

92 POINTS for The ImpEx Collection 28 Year Old 1992 Cameronbridge

“Sherry butt-matured grain whisky evoking aromas of raisins, runny caramel, crème caramel, polished oak furniture, and inky blue plums. It glides with a buttery texture; it’s disarmingly drinkable for its strength, enabling the discovery of deep pockets of dark sweetness, caramelized sugars, chocolate-flavored toffee, oak tannins, and berry notes. A long finish of cacao nibs, wood spices, peppercorn, and dark fruit. One not to miss.” 

Whisky Advocate

The ImpEx Collection 25 Year Old 1993 Springbank

“There are few pleasures in the whisky world greater than nosing a new glass of your favorite single malt, inhaling excitedly, and thinking to yourself: “That’s exactly what I wanted that whisky to smell like.” The Impex Springbank 25 year barrel is that experience. For fans of Springbank, it’s all right there on the nose: oily stewed fruits, candied apricot, and just the faintest phenolic notes that almost morph into petrol. The palate has a serious tang to it, rather than a sweet, supple mouthfeel. There’s a backbone in this whisky, in the same way that a German riesling balances both sweetness and acidity. In all honesty, this Springbank drinks like an older Mosel wine, bringing the same complexity of flavor along for the ride: browned fruits, flint, and subtle smoke, moving in and out of focus along an undercurrent of old resin. Textbook Springbank.”

David Driscoll

The ImpEx Collection 40 Year Old 1980 Blended

“It’s all about the nose: there are few whiskies available these days that smell anything remotely like this. The faintest whisper of sweet baking spices dancing daintily among delicate earth notes and fragrant whisky oils. If I didn’t know it was a blended whisky in advance, I would have guessed old Glenfarclas. The Sherry is front and center, but it’s old Sherry, so it moves more into resin and preserved fruits, rather than sweet toffee or cocoa, but there’s a lovely richness to the finish that rounds out the edges. It’s another nostalgic relic that reminds me of barrel hunting in Scotland during the glory days.”

David Driscoll

The ImpEx Collection 21 Year Old 1999 Orkney

“There are only two real distilleries on Orkney, which really narrows down the options on this, particularly since Scapa bottled a peated whisky for the first time in 2016. So, let’s assume this isn’t a Scapa unicorn but is indeed Highland Park, drawn from a hogshead. It has much of the HP DNA, but not all of it, which makes it quite enticing. A gentle breeze of peat kicks things off, set nicely against a nose of toasted grains, golden syrup, and fresh citrus. The palate continues the evolution of these flavors, which eventually present as delicate and a bit floral, sweet and lush but with a nice layer of spice and just a hint of sea spray on the finish. Lots to love here, and highly worth exploring. Incidentally, this was one of the best in show winners at the recent 2021 Whiskies of the World competition where I served as a judge. 101.6 proof. A- “

Christopher Null, Drinkhacker

The ImpEx Collection 40 Year Old 1980 Blended

“The ImpEx Collection 40-year-old Blend Cask is one of the best blends I’ve had that has a mature age statement. The flavor is impressive, and you can pull out more than what I have mentioned above. I’m surprised at the price tag and would be willing to pay far more. If you can get ahold of this 40-year-old blend, then do it.”

Courtney Kristjana, The Whiskey Wash

The ImpEx Collection 28 Year Old 1992 Cameronbridge

“There’s nothing like a mature, straightforward, Scottish grain whisky to really get you in the mood for drinking. Sweet vanilla, rich oak notes, golden fruits, a little pop from the 51.8% ABV, and a bright, spicy finish. Nothing to complain about here!”

David Driscoll

The ImpEx Collection 14 Year Old 2006 Glen Elgin

“A big, classic Speyside, drawn from a bourbon barrel after 14 years and bottled at full proof. Glen Elgin is normally a pretty tame undertaking, but at full strength it presents with more punch and presence, offering a nose of toasty, well-sweetened cereal, barrel char, and fresh grass. The palate is surprisingly sweet, that breakfast cereal note popping brightly with a drizzle of honey atop a light touch of smoke, walnut oil, and some Christmas spice. Chimney soot notes linger on the finish — in a pleasant, wintry way that makes this warming malt feel destined for holiday time. 105 proof. A-“

Christopher Null, Drinkhacker

The ImpEx Collection 21 Year Old 1999 Orkney

The 21 Year Orkney Cask #58 1999 from The ImpEx Collection is delightful in flavor and complexity. It is light and fruity, and the bit of smoke is just right and balanced. If you come across a bottle, scoop it up. You will not be disappointed. 5/5″

—  Editor in Chief Nino Kilgore-Marchetti, The Whisky Wash 

The ImpEx Collection 28 Year Old 1992 Cameronbridge

“If your only experience with Lowland whisky is Auchentoshan, I would advise you to seek out Cameronbridge. The 28-year-old whisky for The ImpEx Collection is flavorful. During one session you may get one flavor, but the next session it may be a whole different beast. It is a quality barrel, so splurge on yourself.

Courtney Kristjana, The Whiskey Wash

The ImpEx Collection 12 Year Old 2008 Caol Ila

“Light in color, but loaded with flavor, this 12 year Caol Ila smells like you just opened a big bag of smoked almonds and is practically goading you to dig in and grab some more. The palate brings the peat, and it’s the cinnamon red hot peat that really lights up your tongue, bolstered by a salty rim. This is a bright, forward, palate-jolting Caol Ila.”

David Driscoll

The ImpEx Collection 28 Year Old 1992 Cameronbridge

“Its unpeated expressions aside, Caol Ila tends to offer a pretty stable experience from one bottle to the next. This cask strength 12 year old is no exception to that rule, offering a hugely smoky nose that’s stuffed with maritime notes, all typical for the brand. The palate continues the theme: sea spray, some smoked kippers, and a sharp citrus note that builds over time. The finish offers the only real surprise here, landing as just a bit flat, with some overripe fruit notes dominating. Otherwise, it’s as straightforward as anything in this collection gets. 116.8 proof. B+”

Christopher Null, Drinkhacker

The ImpEx Collection 13 Year Old 2007 Long Pond

“I came across this rum on the Florida Rum Society website and I was immediately intrigued. It’s fairly rare to find tropically long aged distillates from the Long Pond Distillery from Independent bottlers at even remotely affordable prices. So when I saw it’s fairly reasonable price I immediately jumped on it (after a brief moment deciding whether to get the Clarendon or the Long Pond).

As alluded to, this is an ITP light ester (though I use that term lightly) pot still rum from the Long Pond Distillery in Jamaica aged for 13 Years in Jamaica in bourbon oak and then bottled at 53.6% ABV. This is my first experience with a pure long aged distillate exclusively from the Long Pond Distillery.

The description also caught my eye hitting many of my favorite Jamaican rum notes…Banana, orange peel, baking spices, sugar coated pecans. So to say the least I was very excited when this finally arrived. But does it live up to my lofty expectations coming in?

Pouring it into the Glenacairn I get a powerful whiff of Blackberry jam like if you open a jar of homemade Blackberry jam and stick your nose down close to it. It’s delightful. But let’s give this at least 15 minutes rest.

After while taking in the nose from the rested Glencairn I get an absolute blast of fruit straight to the face. I am talking the fruitiest nose of any rum I have ever smelled…but a very different variety of fruit. Whereas most Jamaica pot still rums produce scents of Banana, Apple and Pineapple (at least to me), this one is of a decidedly different sort. First, as mentioned is a tidal wave of blackberry jam, just as that starts reaching shore, another tidal wave hits, this one with White Grape Juice and fresh White Cherries – like if you poured a bowl of white grape juice and then set it next to a bowl of freshly picked perfectly ripe white cherries. Next comes Apple Cider with just a slight hint of acetone followed by the scent of fine cigar tobacco, vanilla ice cream, and just the slightest hint of rubber. But really, the Blackberry Jam, White Grape Juice, and fresh White Cherries steal the show.

Often with Jamaican rums, I find they have a fantastic nose but then sometimes struggle to translate those notes on the palate. Not here. The notes from the nose are even magnified further directly on the palate with no alteration. True to form, I get a big mouthful of Blackberry Jam, White Cherries, and White Grapes accompanied by whiskey and cognac notes. But that’s not all. I also get a mouthful of Cherry Pie filling accompanied by Spiced Apple Cider, Vanilla, and a sour astringent note akin to a woody Rhubarb taste. This is fantastic. High expectations not only met but well exceeded.

The finish is a little faint but it is where this rum starts to present something entirely new. On the finish, the fruit punch to the face is replaced by more herbal and floral notes. It starts with Fennel followed by an astringent note like biting into Rose Petals. That is then followed by a return of the Cognac note before then taking a hard right turn into Peppermint, Menthol, Cigar ash, and fermented apples. Interesting.

So this rum met every expectation and in some parts even exceeded it. It isn’t at all what it’s description reads (there is no Banana anywhere in sight) but it is somehow even better than described in a completely different direction. I have never had any other rum with quite the fresh fruit punch to the face that this one has. Especially the Blackberry jam note. That one is unique and right in your face.

This was a very different experience to distillates from Worthy Park and Hampden. Whereas those are Bananas, Cherry Cola, and Apple Brandy, this is more pungently fruity with a different spread: Blackberries, White Grapes, White Cherries, and Spiced Apple Cider.

It’s fairly impressive and time and slight dilution only make it better. It’s not quite Habitation Velier level, but it’s damn close. It’s better than any of the actual Worthy Park and Hampden direct aged distillates I have had. This definitely intrigues me to go after the 13 Year Clarendon and 15 Year Long Pond variations from the same company.

If you see a bottle of this, I highly recommend it. It is a fairly different and pretty fantastic experience. It is absolutely one for the collection.

Short Description: Blackberry Jam, White Grapes, and fresh White Cherries as presented by James Brown.

Nose: Blackberry Jam, White Grape Juice, White Cherries, Spiced Apple Cider, slight acetone, Pineapple, Fine Cigar Tobacco, Vanilla ice cream, slightest hint of rubber (the fruit notes particularly the Blackberry, Grape, Cherry, and Spiced Apple Cider notes are incredibly strong)

Palate: Blackberries, Whiskey, Cognac, Grapes, White Cherries, Spiced Apple Cider, Cherry pie filling, Vanilla, Rhubarb

Finish: faint Fennel, Rose Petals, Cognac, Peppermint, Menthol, faint cigar ash, fermented apples

ABV: 53.6%

Country of Origin: Jamaica

Distillery: Long Pond

Final Rating: 9

1 | Can’t use it; drain pour

2 | Not really enjoyable at all

3 | Maybe salvageable buried deep in a cocktail

4 | I’m not mad, just disappointed

5 | This is okay

6 | I can appreciate what’s going on here

7 | This is pretty good

8 | This is excellent; worth stocking 

9 | An all time favorite

10 | Perfect!

Final Thoughts: This rum came in with a lot of intrigue and anticipation. It did not disappoint. It is a fantastic yet very different style of long aged Jamaican funk. Instead of overripe Bananas and Apple sangria funk, think Blackberry Jam, White grapes, White cherries, and Spiced Apple Cider all funked up in a rum aged in the tropics for 13 years.

Post Edit This was so tasty and memorable I immediately went back to the FRS website and ordered the ImpEx Collection 13 Year Clarendon. A review of that will be forthcoming.”

Utsutsumujuru, Reddit