This GlenDronach was released a little while before TWE’s The Whisky Show together with the BenRiach I already reviewed. That BenRiach was a great dram and I saw a reviewer of this GlenDronach also being quite enthusiastic.
It does seem, however, that the GlenDronach hype is waning a bit. I expected this one to be sold out by now, but it’s not. The same goes for a private release done for Whiskybase. Both are acceptably priced in the current climate, but both are still available after quite a few weeks.
While I have not tried the Whiskybase one, it’s fair to say it’s a quite good whisky. It’s been selected by a couple of guys who have a rather good track record. TWE also has a good track record, so that’s saying something. Let’s dive in!
There is a LOT of sherry on the nose. So much so that it’s on the brink of totally overpowering the whisky. Lots of chocolates and raisins, and quite heavy on the dates as well. Candied cherries too. It’s very sweet, maybe a little too sweet. Not sharp at all.
The palate is more drying than I expected, but that’s welcoming after the sweetness of the nose. I get notes of roasted hazelnuts, with chocolate. Or actually, raw cocoa. Dates, raisins, cherries. Sweet and woody, cedar like even.
The finish veers away from the palate by adding big notes of espresso and the accompanying light bitterness. Raisins and cherries.
Well. Damn. This is a really great whisky. The sherry is truly massive, in such a way that there’s almost too much of it. Luckily there’s just enough whisky to combat the sherry to a stalemate. The fruit flavors aren’t all that typical, the addition of the cherry notes is really great. I especially love that bit.
Add to that that the woody notes go towards the dryness of cedar instead of plain oak. The cocoa and coffee notes work very well with these other flavors.
Gal preferred the BenRiach, but I don’t think I have a clear winner of these two. Both are great for different reasons. Now if only someone bought my Bowmore Devil’s Casks so I could afford these…
GlenDronach 1995, 19yo, PX Puncheon, 55.4%, Cask 4028, OB for The Whisky Exchange. Available for £ 110
Full disclosure: I got this sample for free from The Whisky Exchange. That doesn’t influence my review though.