Archive for the ‘Glenglassaugh’ Category

Signatory Glenglassaugh 1976 (32 year old) 44.4%

Bourbon Hogshead 2383/ Dist: 1976 Btl: 2008/ Tasted: Nov 2010

Old, dusty and musty nose, with a perfumed thread grimly hanging on in there by its finger tips! It takes awhile but eventually some sugarcoated orange can be detected along with some very mature honey, but I think we can safely say that rigour mortis has well and truly set in!

The palate is slightly better with soft, mature, delicate honey and some herbal notes; however the dusty, musty note hangs over it like the reapers scythe! And it ultimately shuffles off its mortal coil with a cardboardy finish. At £85 a bottle you would definitely feel like you’d been had if you bought this. Maybe if it had been bottled 10 years ago it might have just about been worth it, but not now!


Queen of the Moorlands Glenglassaugh 19 year old 53.8%

Sherry/ Tasted:  Sept 2007

Definitely first fill sherry. Stinky and sulphurous on the nose. The palate is equally sulphur ruined coffee and sherry fruit. Raw with loads of tannins. Water softens but the sulphur remains! Dry and tannic finish. This could be from any distillery. Whoever bottled this sulphurous abomination should be ashamed!

Murray McDavid Mission Series Glenglassaugh 1986 (20 year old) 55.3%

Sherry/ Dist: 1986 Btl: 2006/ Tasted: May 2007

One smell and yes this is a sherry cask, with all that ‘in yer face’ lush rich, spicy, succulent sherry fruit. There is absolutely no distillery character in sight, but one has to ask if Glenglassaugh ever had any distillery character (apart from wild grassy gorse and sackcloth or old hessian), I mean its owners Highland Distillers never thought it had enough character to bottle it in its own right, (family silver excluded) and most of its production went for blending in Famous Grouse and Cutty Sark, although it has to be said it is a damn fine sherry cask.

On the palate it is rich, honied and sherried (no surprise) it is raw and up front and personal. It reminds me of and old bottling of theirs, the 1990 Linkwood with those heavy vegetal notes. A drop of water brings out a slight sulphur/ gun smoke note (which unfortunately let it down).

So in summing up it Sherry 1 v Distillery Character 0. I love its intensity and frankly if it wasn’t for that sulphur note it would definitely be a good!

Hart Brothers Glenglassaugh 1974 (22 year old) 43%

Dist: 1974 Btl: Feb 2004/ Tasted: July 2005

Light and full of bourbon oak flavours – vanilla, crème brulee. A pleasant fatness and slight oiliness (like Bruichladdich on steroids!) Very pure, very creamy, a touch floral with a spicy, orange fruit edge. Light and delicate on the palette, very smooth, toasty, vanilla and citrus descend into a nutty middle. Good length with a touch of tangy grassiness.

Dewar Rattray Glenglassaugh 1973 (34year old) 52.0%

Bourbon Cask 3776/ Dist: 1973 Btl: 2008/ Tasted: May 2008

A lovely earthy nose, reeking of maturity and the most gorgeous perfumed orange fruit, vanilla and a sprinkling of wood spice. Mellow and beguiling with a touch of re-fill sherry sweetness. The palate is soft and seductively smooth, maybe a touch floral on entry, followed by lovely mature orange and oodles of wood spice. Really good length and depth.

A drop of water makes the nose extremely floral, with notes of violet and hyacinth; there’s still the earthiness and a touch of Hessian sack. On the palate it become maybe a tad watery, loosing some of its intensity and brings out a late botanical note. All in all not a bad malt. Amazingly fruity for it’s age, and best drunk neat.

Dewar Rattray Glenglassaugh 1976 (29 year old) 53%

Bourbon Cask 2368/ Dist: Dec 1976 Btl Aug 2006/ Tasted: Sept 2006

A wonderfully crisp, fresh and granity nose of clean, oily fruit, vanilla, earth and a lowland-esque grassy citrus note. More weighty on the palate. Quite oily with delicate orange fruit followed by a big hit of dry spices. Lovely length with coffee and demerara sugaralong with juicy and sweet fruit. Lovely length. No need for any water

Dewar Rattray Glenglassaugh 1986 (21 year old) 53.4%

Sherry Cask 162/ Dist: Mar 1986 Btl: June 2007/ Tasted: Sept 2007

Vegetal and stinky orange fruit and coffee nose, overwhelmed by sulphur. Very disappointing. A drop of water brings out mature honey and coffee whilst lessening but not eradicating the sulphur. The palate is vegetal and earthy with again sulphur. Somewhat dried out with the tannins coating the palate. Even water doesn’t revive it! Probably once was good spirit, but it has spent to long in a dodgy sherry cask!

Glenglassaugh ‘The Spirit Drink that Dare Not Speak Its Name’ 50% 50cl

New make spirit/Tasted: Oct 2009

Actually the aromas are rather sweet in character and quite light and not overly oily. There’s the obvious youthful cereal aromas but theyare pretty soft. It’s quite floral with a white cider vinegarnote and a touch of pear drops.

The palate is of a greater oily disposition, opening with the youthful cereal. The malt begins toarrive with a chocolate-maltiness and it has become quite chewy. The alcohol is soft and unobtrusive which is impressive considering its abv. It finishes with a mouth coating grist/ flour impression.

Glenglassaugh ‘The Peated Spirit Drink’ 50%

Tasted: Mar 2011

Just like the ‘Spirit Drink that Dare Not Speak Its Name’ the aromas have a lovely sweetness with fresh rose petals and lightly oiled cereal. Fairly lightly peated with said peat showing a pleasant earthy character.

The palate displays the same sweetness as the nose. Quite gentle with Turkish delight/ rose water notes. There is some really good depth to this with plenty of cereal and malty digestive biscuit flavours. The peat is dry and not overpowering and moves into a light coal dust dénouement towards the finish. Superbly balanced with the sweetness returning.

It is ideal at this alcoholic strength as with the addition of water it becomes a touch soapy and more oiler on the nose, whilst the palate looses its character.

Glenglassaugh ‘The Spirit Drink – Fledgling XB’ 50%

12 months ageing in ex-Bourbon casks/ Tasted: Sept 2011

Quite sweet on the nose with plenty of bourbon oak influence – toffee, butter and vanilla. However there is a crisp green fruit note which to me had a sort of celery –like quality? With time it becomes more herbal with some cider vinegar notes and hints of barley and citrus.

The palate is soft and barley sweet with the toffee’d oak less dominant. Intense, malty and cerealy on the middle with a touch of rose petals. Good length with a tart citrus finish.

Glenglassaugh ‘The Spirit Drink – Blushes’ 50%

6 months ageing in ex-Californian wine casks/ Tasted: Sept 2011

The nose is pure redcurrant/ raspberry in syrup. Very liqueur like with hints of straw and subdued new make notes. The palate is a bit peculiar as the red fruits sit rather oddly with the new make cereal notes. However it does have a lovely spicy, citrus finish with some tannins mingling with the syrup.

I think it would make a good mixer, so in a heretical manner I added a drop of lemonade! And….. It gave the nose a slightly confected but distinctly redcurrant jelly like character, whilst taking the edge of its new make character. Actually my girlfriend rather liked it, so there you have it another one for the girlies!


Glenglassaugh Octaves Classic 44%

Tasted: Sept 2016

Nose: Crisp and herbal with sweet apricot, banana and pineapple, all gently coated in cinnamon and nutmeg and drizzled with maple syrup. Luscious and juicy with some rye-like herbal notes.

Palate: Overly oak dominated, which is a surprise given the nose. A touch of citrus attempts to balance the toffee but the oak really bitters. It does add some lovely pure cocoa, but it’s still too bitter!

Finish: Seriously bitter. Yes there is a touch of banana, toffee and vanilla but nowhere near enough sweetness

Conclusion: If only the palate mirrored the nose.

Glenglassaugh 1983 (26 year old) 46%

Sherry/ Dist: 1983 Btl: 2009/ Tasted: Sept 2011

The nose is quite reserved, almost astringent with sub-industrial brittle honey followed by mature oak, dried fruit, walnuts and malt. I feel the aromas are at odds with itself – one minute there is a hint of sweet perfume the next some slightly murky linseed oil.

The palate is hard and almost industrial in character. Subdued and low key with a bit of a murky character. It also seems old and the wood is a tad tired.

Glenglassaugh 1983 (26 year old) 46%

Sherry/ Dist: 1983 Btl: 2009/ Re Tasted: June 2012

The nose is mature and slightly floral with a touch of sherry oak. Slightly industrial with hints of liquorice and luscious honeyed citrus. The oak becomes quite creamy with time and a distinct herbaceous character emerges which gives it a fresh edge.

Soft yet slightly industrial and oily with plenty of mature apricot and oak, which is creamy and slightly sherried. The middle is earthy and quite mouth-watering as the alcohol arrives. Good length with a touch of marzipan, but slightly drying due to the tannins and alcohol.

With a drop of water some floral, orange blossom is released and it has become rather luscious and juicy. A touch simpler now, maybe but there’s still some creamy vanillins. The palate is a touch softer, although the slightly oily industrial notes haven’t totally disappeared but it’s showing a degree more honey along with some fleshy fruit and a touch of spice. Longer now with a slight sugar coated after-taste.

Glenglassaugh 30 year old 44.8%

Tasted: Nov 2013

The first new release from the distilleries new owners has a beautiful, rich, luscious, nutty sherry nose overflowing with mature dried raisin, plum, coffee, chocolate, leather, treacle, walnuts and duty library spices. However it’s not all sherry as the distillery signature green fruit and citrus is discernable. Very poised and elegant with no off notes whatsoever!

The palate is soft and luscious, again opening with the mature sherry notes of juicy dates, plums, raisin, liquorice, treacle, chocolate and walnuts. Just like the nose some green fruit and citrus peeks through. Very long and dusty with a beautiful cocoa powder fade. A truly majestic malt.

Glenglassaugh 30 year old 44.8%

Re-Tasted: Dec 2014

Nose: Moist Armagnac-esque aromas of prunes, walnuts, dates, dark honey, treacle and dark violets. Very deep and showing some maturity with hints of coffee.

Palate: Big, supple and sherried with moist dates, prunes, grapes and walnuts. Plenty of dark treacle and honey notes which are balanced by hints of citrus and wet stones.

Finish: Long and moist with the dried fruit lingering and being joined by hints of vanilla and pepper.

Conclusion: An impressive sherry monster!

Glenglassaugh Aged Over 30 years 52.3%

Single cask bottling (270 bottles) – 34 years old

Approximately 33 years in refill hogshead – 15 months in ex-Sauternes cask/ Tasted: Sept 2011

The nose opens with a beautiful intensity of mature tropical fruit and lovely mature sawdusty oak, which moves into creamy butterscotch. The complexity of the honey aromas is stunning, deftly melding sweetness and brittleness. With time some Armagnac-esque dried fruit and citrus oils emerge. It does have some sub-industrial moments but the weight of honey never lets them dominate.

The palate opens with some gentle mature honey and the Armagnac-esque dried fruit, followed by hints of demarara sugar, walnuts and no shortage of wood notes. The honey takes on a brittle, edgy character and fights back against the wood and with some aplomb holds out until the death even though some chocolate and coffee notes seep through. Eventually the oak does bitter out the finish but in saying that the lovely natural oils balance it out. A wonderfully venerable and entertaining dram.

Glenglassaugh 1972 (37 year old) 58.9%

Bourbon/ Dist: 1972 Btl: 2010/ Tasted: June 2012

A serious complex nose. Dried grape, walnut, old coffee laced with marzipan, honeycomb, vanilla, angelica and wood polish. There are hints of stewed apple and lovely, gentle spices. Seriously deep and mature with some late herbal notes.

Gently honeyed and full on the palate with plenty of sweet dry spice, hints of walnuts, dates, moist fruitcake along with a touch of herbal marc and wood tannins. The alcohol is quite piquant and leads to a mouth-watering, violet tinged, honey, beeswax, vanilla cream and praline finish. Stunning!

With water the nose becomes wonderfully luscious with the mature American oak becoming seriously creamy and some lovely, soft peppery spices now apparent. The palate has become as lush as the nose, so, so, so juicy it’s mind blowing! The fruit has taken on a beautiful slightly tropical sheen and the length is amazing as is the purity of the mature American oak. Just like the nose some lovely, warming peppery spice has appeared and lingers!

Glenglassaugh 1967 (43 year old) 40.4%

Sherry/ Dist: 1967 Btl: 2010/ Tasted: June 2012

A stunningly mature nose of the softest, juiciest dried fruit imaginable. Raisin, sultana, moist fruit cake, old wood polish and chocolate. The herbal distillery character comes through a touch. All round this is a superbly dense and moist nose!

Soft, juicy and quite chocolatey on the palate with raisins, burnt wood, juicy dried grape and silky, mature honey, liquorice, dark toffee and molasses. Seriously mouth-filling but the alcohol and herbal notes balance it beautifully. Stunning length with marzipan, dates, walnuts and sweet licqourice. My god, this is good! It finishes with some slightly smoky spices and a light coating of walnut oil. There is a slight bitterness from the oak but at this age that can be forgiven. Absolutely stunning!

Glenglassaugh Aged Over 40 years 49.2%

Single cask bottling (202 Bottles) – 45 years old/ Tasted: Sept 2011

The nose reeks of maturity, as one would expect. The oak presence is stunning, sometimes cedery, sometimes a bit bourbon, sometimes a bit fir like with buckets of dried spices. However the palate is not all about the wood there’s a lovely depth of honeyed dried fruit, which displays a molasses/ rum-like dénouement before becoming reminiscent of an old grain. Hints of smoke and burnt wood drift in and out just to add to the complexity.

The palate is impressively fruity, opening with mature cherries in light syrup before the rum-like dried fruit and spices arrive. A sensationally beautiful melange of extremely mature, earthy honey, sweet spices, bitter oak and dried fruit caress the tongue. The melding of spirit and wood is mind bogglingly good. Superb length with some serious coffee/ mocha moments, finishing with some luscious juicy date and prunes. A truly stunning dram that almost defies a tasting note!

Glenglassaugh ‘Revival’ 3 year old 46%

First and Refil Sherry butts, finished for 6 months in First Fill Oloroso.

Sweet-ish crunchy cereal aromas to begin with, mingle with light, yet intense toffee’d Oloroso notes. Hints of straw, milk chocolate, red berries, orange and salt emerge. Obviously youthful but exceptionally clean and very pleasant.

The palate opens with soft, juicy, earthy-toffee, walnuts and caramel. The sherry is unobtrusive allowing the cereal notes to come through. Slightly piquant on the middle leading to a fresh, slightly chocolatey, red berry and straw finish. A smidgen on the short side, due to its age and the salty notes but there is a good fruit sweetens and a little honey which mitigates to a certain extent. It does finish with a lovely spicy twist though.

Glenglassaugh Revival 46%

Re-Tasted: Nov 2013

The nose opens with some lightly toffee’d oak and gristy, sweet barley and sweet malt. The sherry comes across very much in a refill style adding a little richness to the mix, but the distillery character of citrus, gooseberry and fern comes through, although in saying that there appears to be more oak on the nose than the last time I tasted it. Lightly perfumed with time and very enjoyable.

The palate opens with the sweet-ish barley, green fruit and citrus before the coffee’d refill sherry notes arrive. Still very fresh, invigorating and lightly piquant with hints of straw and nuts. Good length and possibly a little more evolved than the last time I tasted it, plus as the nose would suggest a little more oak too.

Glenglassaugh ‘Evolution’ 57.2%

Aged in ex George Dickle casks/ Tasted: Apr 2013

The nose opens with very intense aromas of crisp green apple, grass, cucumber and gooseberry along with hints of straw and cereal. Then the under ripened banana and pineapple notes arrive. Really fresh and forceful with the oak coming through adding an almost vanilla ices cream note. A real wake up for the senses!

The palate opens the other way around with the buttery oak showing first, followed by the green fruit, crisp cereal and a light ‘toshan-esque rose petal note. Wonderfully clean with a sharp barley focus on the middle. Mouth-watering finish with a little youthful oiliness.

With a drop of water the soft squashed banana, apple and green fruit aromas are let loose as the oak becomes more subservient. Wonderfully fruity! The palate is a little lighter with more oily cereal as the oak recedes. However it’s still subtly fruity. A beautiful, young spirit with a light rose petal note on the finish.

Glenglassaugh Evolution 50%

Tasted: Nov 2013

Lowering the abv from 57% to 50% appears to have made the oak more dominant – pure crème brulee, but that lovely fresh green fruit – gooseberry, kiwi and green banana cut through like a hot knife through butter. Pleasantly gristy and lightly perfumed with some dusty spices too.

The palate is light, malty and biscuity with some delightfully crunchy barley evident before the fudgy oak arrives. Like the nose the green fruit and citrus balances it superbly. Less youthful and oily than I remember. Good length with the creamy oak returning on the finish.

Glenglassaugh Torfa 50%

Bourbon/ Peated to 20ppm/ Tasted: July 2014

An exuberantly tropical nose of kiwi, apricot and banana. The fruit is wonderfully fleshy with some fresh, crunchy citrus, fragrant green apple, lavender, gristy barley and manure. A light, sweet, peat smoke note wafts in and some creamy oak notes appear. A beautiful nose.

The palate is soft and barley led with a more restrained tropical character. Lightly creamy oak and taught citrus come through on the middle. Lovely intensity with the citrus becoming increasingly tart as a light peat smoke note emerges. Good length with gently sweetened tropical fruit returning and mingling with the smoke. Charming crisp green apple, citrus and lightly salted after-taste.

Glenglassaugh Torfa 50%

Re-Tasted: Dec 2014

Nose: Opens with slightly burnt straw, earth and a touch of medicinal peat. Hints of honey, orange and white fruit follow. A good degree of sweet malt balances the peat well.

Palate: A little hard with some herbal spirit notes. Intensely spicy peat with some rough/ raw earthy notes and hints of celery.

Finish: Long, dustily peated and spicy with a light honeyed character attempting to balance the sub-industrial notes.

Conclusion: The nose was very impressive but the palate was a little hard and unyielding.


Glenglassaugh Pedro Ximinez Sherry Wood Finish 46%

American/ Pedro Ximinez

Btl: 2017/ Tasted: Nov 2017

Aromas of youthful barley and thick, treacly PX. Hints of burnt coffee, and floral/ woody fruit. Hints of green apple, greengage and gooseberry counterbalance the sherry character well.

The palate is rich and full of dried PX fruit, treacle and sweet liquorice. Polished and succulent, but very sherry dominated. Long with lingering burnt coffee, raisinated fruit, dried grape and a subtle minerality.

Glenglassaugh Port Wood Finish 46%

American/ Port

Btl: 2017/ Tasted: Nov 2017

The nose is dusty and sweetly spiced with cinnamon and nutmeg. The port notes are quite sweet and dense, but fairly unassuming, which allows the sweet-ish barley to come through. Like the PX finish it’s very polished and classy.

Soft, smooth and dense with juicy port fruit and a subtle, but balancing minerality. Lovely sweet barley on the middle, along with some sweet and bitter spices. Very polished and elegant with a long, spicy and mineral finish with lingering juicy red fruit and barley.

Glenglassaugh Peated Virgin Oak Finish 46%

American/ Virgin oak

Btl: 2017/ Tasted: Nov 2017

Aromas of butter milk and toffee, shot through with edgy, herbal peat. Hints of aromatic, sweet barley and white fruit appears but the emphasis is on the interplay between spirit and wood.

The palate opens with soft vanilla, followed by spicy/ peppery wood tannins and hints of camphor, earth and medicinal peat. Very grippy and intense with the pepperiness building. Long and sooty with lingering dry vanilla and medicinal notes.

Glenglassaugh Peated Port Wood Finish 46%

American/ Port

Btl: 2017/ Tasted: Nov 2017

The nose opens with the winey redcurrant jelly and sweet, slightly floral fortified fruit. Dense and rich with plenty of warming spice and subtle, earthy peat with faint iodine and medicinal notes. Sweetly fruited and very polished.

Full and porty on the palate with drying wood tannins, wood embers and earthy peat. Mouth-coating, syrup laden fruit follows to offset the tannins. There’s a lovely battle on the middle between the syrup and the drier, peaty elements. Long and sweetly spiced with that battle continuing. Slightly mineral after-taste.