This 15-year-old Glendronach was released in 2011 & was finished in tawny port casks. Continuing the distillery’s new owner’s plans to take the bourbon matured whisky from the previous owners & align it with their vision of Glendronach’s traditional taste.
Appearance: Dark gold, bordering on auburn and Autumnal. A thick swirl mark and film quickly form. Many medium to thick legs are abundant.
Nose: Brief waft of springwater followed by the more heady ABV, caramel, barrel char and banana. There’s also a pine freshness/coolness. There’s a lovely mix of the tawny port almost delicate sweetness with the baking spices. It’s a really well balanced and married nose. There’s a slight floral element for me too, might be very light red liquorice though or even palm violets?
Palate: A nice mouthfeel, buttery and [cough]smooth[cough]. Spicier than I would have imagined, a chilli tingle and white pepper. The second sip reveals more sweetness and port-like qualities. It is a touch grippy and has a good warmth on the chest. High % dark chocolate, plum and maybe a touch of Jaffa Cake. I get a slight bitterness towards the finish, along with some oakiness (maybe the grippiness). Just took a sip from an almost empty glass and got heavy orange.
Finish: The finish is a medium length mix of the spicy notes and the bitterness, both sprinkled with icing sugar. I prefer it to the virgin oak but still not blown away.
Overall: Another interesting dram with plenty going on and in the right quantities. Of the tawny ports, I’ve tried, this falls short in comparison. It’s nice but I feel it’s a tad lacking.