Whisky Review: GlenDronach 12 Year Old Original
Category: Highland single malt scotch whisky
Origin: GlenDronach Distillery
Bottling: Benriach Distillery Company
Cost: £39.43 buy from Master of Malt
What they say:
This superb richly sherried single malt is matured for at least 12 years in a combination of the finest Spanish Pedro Ximenez and Oloroso sherry casks. Non-chill filtered, of natural colour and bottled at 43%, the GlenDronach 12 year old Original is a sweet, creamy dram.
Deep amber-red gold.
Sweet, creamy vanilla, with hints of ginger. Spiced mulled wine and pear.
Rich, creamy, silky-smooth. Warm, rich oak and sherry sweetness, full mouth feel, raisins and soft fruits. Spicy with medium length and a dry finish.
Long, full and firm, slightly nutty.
What I say:
Kick started my Glendronach mini-vertical with the 12 Year Old Original. After trying the absolutely superb Abbey Whisky own bottling (GlenDronach 1993 Single Cask #33 Abbey Whisky Exclusive) I was desperate to try the core range from ‘Dronach to see how they faired.
On the cusp of the Speyside and Highland regions this distillery seems to defy regional classification. The current core range of 12, 15 and 18 year old expressions were re-launched in April 2008 to much acclaim. However prior to this the distillery had been closed and mothballed from 1996-2002. The distillery has had a chequered history including partial destruction by fire (1837) and a string of owners. Today it appears stronger than ever under independent ownership Glendronach has invested in heavy maturation in well-sourced sherry casks giving a distinctive flavour profile. Currently, on top of this core range a series of single-cask bottlings are being regularly releasedand arousing fervent interest. Glendronach is definitely an up-and-coming distillery and one to watch for the future. Glendronach fans have already established their own fan-club (seek out the Glendronach Appreciation Society on Facebook – see you there!).
Golden marmalade orange
Fines, spirit with slight leathery aroma, strong orange and peach fruity notes, toffee and caramel, figs, malted barley and cocoa
Thick, viscous and oily, slight leather tannins, strawberry and plum red fruits, milk chocolate, and nutty praline / gianduja
Medium length, sweet Demerara sugar possibly a little caramelised, more red fruits and slightly drying
Would I buy it again:
As an introductory level bottling from Glendronach this 12 year old is very drinkable and reasonably priced, there are plenty of hints of the sherry influence in here and has an overall nutty chocolate character as well. Possibly lacking a little in depth and power or body of the flavours but still full bodied and carries a good finish. Personally I would spend a little more money (if you can) and go for something a little older but I would challenge anyone to find fault or not like this expression.
Don’t take my word for it:
Read Nick’s thoughts at Whisky Waffle