Review: Glenfarclas 10 Years Old 2003
Category: Speyside single malt scotch whisky
Bottling: Official for Marks and Spencer
Cost: £28 from Marks & Spencer
What they say:
This is not just a bottle of Highland Malt. It is the result of over 175 years of tradition and experience – of secrets carried and nutured through six generations of my family here in the heart of Speyside. Many have wondered at the origins of the unique taste of Glenfarclas. Some believe the secrets lies in the tumbling waters of the Green Burn married with the fresh highland air. Others believe it is our great copper stills, which continue to be direct fired, and some believe the secret is my family’s uncompromising commitment to maturing Glenfarclas in the best oak casks in traditional dunnage warehouses. Wherever the secret lies, we invite you to share in enjoying and savouring Glenfarclas. – John L. S. Grant
Distilled in 2003, Bottled 2013 – A traditional Speyside Malt with a heavy sherry influence coming from a single 2003 vintage. This 10 years of age gives it great power and intensity with integrated flavours from the sherry oak. Gentle and mouth filling with toffee apple, light chocolate notes and a long finish.
What I say:
I had been looking out for this particular expression after a heads-up on Twitter that Glenfarclas were launching a 2003 10 years old via Marks and Spencers. This hit the shelves at £35 but was instantly discounted to £30 so it was really a no-brainer to purchase this bottle.
Deep russet amber gold
Oloroso sherry pours out, sweet red fruits, dry leather and nutty aromas
Warming chocolate covered raisins, smooth malted barley, a strong toffee and honey sweetness pervades with hints of hazelnuts
Medium-length finish like dark chocolate slowly melting in the mouth, the age starts to show through with a little coffee-like bitterness, slightly rough and may benefit from a drop of water
Would I buy it again:
Absolutely, here is a perfect example of what Supermarket Malt Whisky should be all about, despite being seasonal and a relatively limited bottling release, this was purchased expressly for the festive period and performed admirably, in fact outstanding, when compared to much more expensive and exclusive bottles of whisky. This is a little sherry-monster but completely accessible and drinkable. The similarity to M&S Oloroso sherry [reviewed here] was also uncanny, making me wonder about the provenance of the Glenfarclas casks used to produce this whisky…