Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Glenlivet 15 Year Old ★

Spirit Name:
Spirit Type:

Glenlivet 15 Year Old
Single malt

3, medal, silver icon

Speyside, Scotland
Best served:

Finished in Limousin French Oak
Vibrant, crisp yet mature and elegant. The sharp and tart stone fruit cut through dense oak and vanillas with fireworks of spice adding some show before a dry and bitter finish.

Tasting notes:

The Glenlivet 15 Year Old offers superb complexity, in part thanks to the finishing in French oak that is used for the maturation of many cognacs. This adds some familiar spices for the cognac lover, alongside the beautifully vanilla theme. In my blind tasting of this whisky, I was floored by the nose but let down a tad by the skewed bitter finish. This is still sensational whisky!

Nose: There are some whiskies that almost immediately make a great impression, and this is one of those whiskies. Almost immediately, I feel the love. The bouquet is immense, with hot cross buns glowing with bakery spices such as cinnamon and nutmeg and the sweet burst of sultana. The buttery vanilla softens the oak, as berry fruits and raspberry confectionary glow with the strong presence of licorice. There is also a wood theme on the nose, with pencil shavings intermingling with cardboard and cereal notes.  

Taste: Soft yet… immense! That is possibly the most accurate word to describe this whisky. It is a gentle giant, with crisp and sharp nectarine and yellow plum mellowed by vanillas and the burst of oak that releases fireworks of spice and bitter oak. There is a bitter twang of oak towards the end, but it is rescued and softened by a buttered scone. I almost feel naughty… time for some cardio?

Finish: Strong oak notes indicate an incredibly complex whisky, with dark chocolate coated coffee bean and cocoa tingling on the tongue with the sharp tartness of the yellow, more under-ripe, plum. This whisky offers a bitter and fry finish, with some sugars from the distillate and cask assisting to balance the ship.

A little skewed to the bitter side, oak driven
$85 (Aus), £39 (UK), $38 (US)

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