I suspect most people have come across Glendronach at some point in their whisky journey. The standard releases and special wood finishes from the Highlands distillery are reasonably easy to come across. Although they do bring out some popular products for limited times, so if you find one you are particularly fond of it might be worth picking up an extra bottle. They also make single cask releases that can be more difficult to come by.
I tracked a 14 year old from the 14th batch on the website of Whisky Shop Dufftown about a month ago and although they are now sold out of this I can see they still have some of the 12 and 13 year old bottles in stock. My bottle was £83.95 plus delivery, but the younger bottles are £76.95. There are however still some of the 14 year old bottles available from other online retailers for anyone who wants to try a dram, although there are only 674 bottles out there so don’t hang around. There are 12 bottles in Glendronach’s batch 14 release, ranging up to 30 years. Batch 13 came out earlier this year and Glendronach has mostly made two releases a year since Batch 1 in 2009, so we can expect two releases in 2017 if they keep to the same schedule. I really enjoy hunting down these special releases and they are great whiskies to bring out for guests if you can stand sharing them!
The whisky is drawn from Pedro Ximenez Sherry Puncheons and if you like you sherry bombs this whisky is a must try. I know we shouldn’t be driven by such things, but the packaging on this whisky is superb. The bottle lies in a lined box that flips open, which is a nice touch. The whisky’s colour is dark brown wood. It is bottled at 52.3% volume, so I tend to add a touch of water to tame this beast.
The nose on this whisky is powerful and worth enjoying, I did for about 5 minutes before I dove in. There are layers of rich fruit and citrus, with spice in there. I got layers of rich fruit, the Christmassy kind you find in cakes and puddings making it perfect for this time of year. For me the taste is rich caramel, followed by dark fruit and perhaps a touch of something like pineapple. But mostly this is about the rich dark fruit and there is a lot of that to this whisky. This is a great sherry whisky and the finish is long and smooth with more dark fruit.
For me this is a thumbs up whisky that I will be saving for special occasions. I had an interesting chat with some whisky enthusiasts recently about the price of whisky. We all agreed that anything above £80 is a bit pricey for an everyday whisky, but this is a great example of what you do get if you go out and spend a bit more. When you are spending the bit extra there are some real treats out there and this is one of them. There is a lot of bang for buck in this whisky and I feel it is worth that little bit extra, although I will need to sell the idea to Mrs ANoseForWhisky!