Rare Malts Millburn 25 year old 1975


A big thanks to the TAIBS crew for a sample of this Rare Malts 25 year old from 1975.

As this Millburn research project gears up, it seems only apt that the whisky comes under consideration as well. Frankly, there isn't much Millburn to go around nowadays and if you do see a bottle then it's more likely to be this entry in the Rare Malts series. 

The range was produced when single malts weren't as popular as they are today. By vatting a large amount of casks, inventories were cleared and these releases appeared in their thousands as an outturn. What seemed like a good idea at the time has now spawned a very collectable and iconic range, but also one that looks like financial suicide in today's market.

For several distilleries, this was their moment to shine and receive an official bottling. Millburn was fortunate to receive 3 entries in the Rare Malts series - this 25 year old is in the middle of an 18yo and a 35yo. 


Incredibly forceful and vibrant arrival. Apple puree, sandal wood, peanut butter and floral aspect that brings a summery vibe. Lemon cheesecake, corn and shortbread. Incredibly detailed and waxy. Orange, apricot stone and more citrus notes underline how alive this whisky is. A little marzipan, raw biscuit dough, crackers and Tunnock’s Caramel Wafer. Fire wood, saline, freshly laid concrete and cleaning solution for glass – classic Invernessian weirdness.


A richness and decadence to this whisky. It threatens to explode on the palate with an arsenal of flavours. Instead, without water it is a little overzealous at first. A tartness initially, with the orange and lemon pips fighting for supremacy. More apples, pine cones and beeswax. Then it goes international with Kiwi fruit, mango and some guava. Quite floral for an Invernessian whisky. Oh, don’t me wrong, there’s still the oddity of concrete, or to be more precise, sweepings from a concrete floor. Given time you pick up on the delicate smokiness and there’s a fatty essence to this whisky, which has a great texture. It is a blockbuster and with water the fruitiness continues.


Just a delightful whisky. If you start your Millburn journey with this whisky, then I'm sorry that (in my experience) it is downhill from there on. Still, enjoy the moment and the complexity and blending on offer here. This bottling captures the sweet spot and prompts the question as to why if Millburn was capable of such a release as this, why was it so variable and often, extremely difficult to get along with?

The perfect release to kick off our whisky page on this website. And while it might never be overflowing with whiskies, we'll try our best to capture some Millburn moments for future generations. As for the score, this punches extremely high...

Score: 9/10


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