Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Whisky Review: Glen Scotia 14 Year

Part two of the vertical tasting I recently did of Glen Scotia single malts at the Highland Stillhouse. Check out my review of the 12 year for more info about the distillery and its history.

It has recently emerged that Glen Catrine and Loch Lomand, the owners of Glen Scotia (as well as the Littlemill Lowland distillery), are up for sale. What this means for Glen Scotia remains unclear, but I can only hope that the new owners will give the Campbeltown distillery the care and investment it needs to really shine.

The 14 year version is a little bit weaker at 40%, but doesn't show it, as the malt is packed with flavor.

Glen Scotia 14 Year

Nose: floral apple cider, light vegetal peat undertones, slightly malty, cognac grape-iness, cacao, cookie dough, dry-ish overall. After adding a few drops of water, the malt takes over with coastal/maritime salt, light cacao/peat, milk chocolate? cognac undertones, light smoke, a touch of barbecue.

Taste: malty sucrose sweetness and pepper hit simultaneously up front, cognac fruitiness mid-palate, very subdued peat at the back - lightly astringent and bitter. After adding a few drops of water, there is more cognac grape-iness up front and more malt towards the back, with cacao/oak/peat bitterness intertwined.

Finish: apple cider, malt, residual cognac notes, a whiff of peat and oak

You know how spirits are often said to be like cognac when the writer wants to compliment them? This one genuinely reminds me of cognac. The combination of brandy notes, malt, and peat was utterly beguiling.  Admittedly I found the nose to be more complex than the palate, but the flavors weren't a slouch either. Sadly this one is long-gone from the shelves, never to be seen again. Hopefully one of the older expressions in the revamped Glen Scotia line will be similar to this whisky, as it would be a shame if the flavor profile disappeared.

1 comment:

  1. Nice review. I'm finding many whiskies that I've recently been reviewing or imbibing have that apple cider or brandy like quality. I can't help but wonder if this is part of the process or maybe more directed at the type of barley some of the distilleries are now using. The reason I wonder this is that the whiskies are from many different regions as well as distilleries. Would be interesting to find out.