A heavy peated spirit distilled in 2013 and matured for seven and a half years in 100% first-fill bourbon barrels, before a twelve-month finish in the finest first fill Pedro Ximenez hogsheads. Non-chill filtered, natural colour and bottled at cask strength, 56.5% ABV.
“Our Festival Release 2022 is very special as it heralds the return of the much-loved Malts Festival and the opportunity for us to showcase our work in person once more to whisky fans from around the world. The limited-edition release is an intriguing mix of characteristics, picking up our signature maritime style and the rich sticky sweetness from the Pedro Ximénès hogsheads. It is a liquid that has been crafted by our talented team and is a fantastic dram to enjoy while soaking up Campbeltown and all it has to offer.”Iain McAlister, Distillery Manager and Master Distiller at Glen Scotia
Appearance: A lovely crisp amber. A thick viscous film coats the glass with ease and sticks like syrup. A beaded swirl mark slowly morphs into thick legs.
Nose: A heady (and heavenly) wave of that CS ABV immediately reminds you of the Glen Scotia pedigree. The peat is obvious, even from some 18 inches away.
It’s reminiscent of honey glazed bacon chops on the BBQ. There is also a malt note, along with dusty hay barn air and a subtle damp basement funk.
A new note for me is Extra Virgin Olive Oil, right at the end.
Palate: The ABV is evident on the palate too, this one isn’t mucking around. A good semi-viscous mouthfeel. Not thick and oily, but certainly not thin.
Lots of smoke and big liquorice flavours burst on the tongue upon the first sip.
The second sip reveals more spicy notes, in the form of white and lemon pepper, along with medium-hot chilli, that tingle on the tongue like popping candy.
I’m not getting anything sweet, other than the smoke, but that’s fine, it has plenty more going on. It’s quite a spice bomb!
Finish: Not as long as I’d have thought for a smokey CS, it’s medium to long but I would have thought it would have gone on forever at the first sip.
A good chest warmth, almost acidic, with the buttery malt notes, some blood orange and clove. The spicier elements of pepper and chilli linger in the background for a while too.
Overall: As with pretty much all Glen Scotia expressions, I really like this. It’s quite a contrast to the previous releases and that’s a good thing.
This is an ‘I want a serious whisky tonight’ type of dram, and that’s always a great addition to any whisky cabinet.