Glen Moray

Glen Moray Warehouse 1 2005 Tokaji Finish

Glen Moray 15 Years Old 2005 Tokaji Aszu cask finish Warehouse 1

What they say

Glen Moray’s famed ‘Warehouse 1’ has today (9th June) released another treasure from behind its deep blue doors: a 2005 Tokaji Finish expression, which is the first of three whiskies scheduled in 2021 from the ‘new look’ Warehouse 1 Collection.

Distilled in October 2005 and finished in oak casks that once held Tokaji Aszú wine, this new cask strength dram will sweep discerning drinkers away with its sumptuous marriage of Glen Moray spirit and the sweet, nutty notes of Hungary’s decadent dessert wine.

Five Tokaji casks from the Elgin distillery’s Warehouse 1 – home to Glen Moray’s most unusual and adventurous maturation experiments over the years – have been used for a small batch release of just 1244 bottles for the UK market.

Expect sugar, spice and all things nice from this golden, cask strength dram, which moves through a ‘full-on sweetshop’ on the nose, to malty, maple syrup flavours and a long, lingering marzipan finish that beautifully balances the structure of Glen Moray spirit.

After the success of the first Warehouse 1 release last year – Sauternes Cask Matured – the Collection has been given a fresh, bold design update. A colourful Warehouse 1 stamp in deep, soft gold represents the Tokaji casks, with an illustration of the warehouse in question also featured, including the birds that circle overhead on a typical day at the distillery.

The new Tokaji Finish expression will be the first of three launches scheduled for the Collection in 2021. All will share a common theme, celebrating Glen Moray’s classic Speyside spirit matured in casks sourced from some of Europe’s oldest, noblest and most distinctively flavoured wine varieties.

Hungarian Tokaji is a wine with a rich, royal and romantic heritage that stretches back hundreds of years. It is now enjoying an exciting resurgence, inspiring Glen Moray’s master distillers as they seek out interesting, eclectic casks to create this special collection of whiskies.

As Glen Moray Brand Ambassador Iain Allan notes: ‘When our distillers talk about Warehouse 1 it’s almost as if they’re letting you into a secret. This is their special space for experimentation, innovation and patiently waiting for the character of each whisky to develop.

‘Our team searches the world for interesting casks and they’re not afraid to push the boundaries, try the unusual and creatively combine Glen Moray whisky with unexpected casks. In this case, we have turned to Tokaji, which is a very old but lesser-known wine that has created a wonderful, flavour-packed dram that we’re very proud to release.

‘It’s also very fitting that Warehouse 1 now has its own new and distinctive identity. This is a mark that signifies exclusive, small scale releases, non-chill-filtered and bottled at cask strength and with natural colour. Drinkers can be assured that each whisky has been made with a spirit of adventure, resulting in a dram packed with character and delicious flavour.

‘I’m excited to see what whisky fans will make of our new Tokaji release, and as we move through 2021, I can promise there are more surprises to come from Warehouse 1.’

Crafted since 1897 in the ancient town of Elgin, the capital of the Speyside whisky region, Glen Moray distillers have been curious about flavour throughout their history. Surviving handwritten ledgers show that a wide variety of casks were used to mature new make spirit back in those early days, which was an unusual practice for the time. A deep knowledge and expertise of wood has developed at Glen Moray through generations of distillers, resulting in today’s exceptional range of whiskies with a style to suit everyone. Glen Moray Warehouse 1 2005 Tokaji Finish is bottled at cask strength (56.3% ABV), non-chill-filtered and with natural colour. It is a UK exclusive, available in 70cl packs in specialist whisky shops, RRP £75

Official Tasting Notes

  • Colour bright gold
  • Nose a sweetshop of aromas: sugared almonds, caramel toffee, freshly baked gingerbread. Sweet sugars hold back the traditional fresh fruit character of Glen Moray spirit.
  • Taste Malty, biscuity, hints of freshly baked bread, slightly sweet. Maple syrup on Scottish pancakes along with warm pecan pie.
  • Finish nutty, almond marzipan, long and lingering.

What I say

Moving a little further north into Elgin but remaining in Speyside (at least virtually!). Yesterday we zoomed Glen Moray’s Iain Allan for a taster through their latest Warehouse 1 release featuring an Hungarian Tokaji Aszu wine cask finish.

Iain mentioned the parcel of Tokaji casks had been split across numerous maturing spirits in Warehouse 1. This example distilled in 2005 had spent 14 years in ex-Bourbon and 12 months in Tokaji showed the most promise/best balance so far.

Tokaji has seen rare use in whisky maturation previously, Benromach finished a 21yo featuring a 6 months Tokaji finish released in 2004 (reviewed here). Edradour 2002 vintage, Springbank’s Longrow peated expression 1995 vintage and the Arran distillery released a 1998 vintage in 2007, 2005 vintage in 2014 and a 2006 vintage in 2016 (at least one of which I should really now try and sample!) all featuring Tokaji maturation, and Glen Moray’s prior sister distillery Glenmorangie recently released the Tokaji finished A Tale of Cake (reviewed here).

  • ABV 53.6%
  • Age 15 Years Old
  • Bottler Glen Moray
  • Bottling Official
  • Cask Tokaji cask finish.
  • Category Single Malt Whisky
  • Cost £75
  • Origin Glen Moray Distillery
  • Outturn 1244 bottles
  • Region Speyside
  • Released 2021
  • Vintage 2005

My tasting notes:

  • Appearance Bright orange gold (7/10), numerous, medium-fine tears and tapered, oily legs.
  • Nose Sweet, fluffy candyfloss and orange blossom, fresh apple, orange peel, malty cereal, biscuit notes, more fruit, nectarine and tangerine, sticky maple syrup, sugared almonds, straw/hay, floral, saffron.
  • Taste Medium-full bodied, mouth-coating sweetness initially, sugar syrup, candied ginger, zesty, thick-cut orange marmalade with a squeeze of lemon juice after, becomes vaporous, biscuity malt, shortbread, brioche and maple and pecan slice pastries feature.
  • Finish Long, nutty toasted pecans and almonds, ginger snap biscuits.
  • Overall Traditional sweetie shop with candied ginger and dried/candied orange peel layered over Glen Moray’s biscuity malt base, later maple and pecan pastries and a hint of saffron, remarkable!

Score 87/100

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