Blind Tasting Competition Day 1: Glenfarclas 25

So, yesterday night was the first day of the Blind Tasting Competition. I have been looking forward to it for a while now, and I made sure I tried the sample in time. I have been known to forget about it when the time came, even though I was looking forward to it.

From now to the 24th of December we’ll try one dram every day with the following rules:

  • They’re all single malts
  • They’re all from Scotland
  • A distillery is only in the competition once
  • The minimum ABV is 43%
  • A region is never represented two days in a row

So, with that in mind (this doesn’t give us any info on the first day, obviously) I started my dram yesterday. It was fairly clear that this was a low ABV right away. I couldn’t imagine this being over 43%, even 46% seemed too high for this one.

Sniff:
A malt forward single malt at first, rather quiet and classic. Some green scents, like mossy trees, fresh barley, that kind of stuff. Some leafy herbs and a bit of oak.

Sip:
The palate is gentle and slightly peppery. There’s oak and barley, but still in that green, sappy way. Slightly creamy and not strong at all.

Swallow:
The finish is nice and grainy (barley-y) and green. Hints of oak that last fairly long.

Because of the creamy green-ness it reminded me of Tomatin 18, albeit a bit sharper on the palate with the pepper. I still wanted to go for that since there might be some single cask around that is similar.

Of course, me being me, I was about to fill in my guess just before eleven when I remembered the reveal is at eleven PM and the deadline for filling in your guess is 10.45. Two minutes too early for me, apparently. So no points and I did miss out on the first 20 points.

The only thing that would’ve gotten me any points was the ABV. Although Tomatin is quite near to Glenfarclas it is a highland whisky instead of Speyside. The age was a bit off too.

Interestingly, I also tried Glenfarclas 25 last week for the Advent Calendar, and I didn’t like it then (too oaky and bitter, not enough fruit) today it was a green sappy dram. Is this suddenly the most inconsistent whisky available? What is going on with Glenfarclas?

Strangely, I liked my own bottle when I had it some years ago. I didn’t like the sample from the Advent Calendar, but I loved this one. I realize that buying a bottle of whisky can be a gamble when you don’t know it, but with this one it can apparently be a gamble from bottle to bottle.

Glenfarclas 25, 43%, available from Zonneveld (Uw Top Slijter) for € 110

About Sjoerd de Haan-Kramer

I'm a web developer at Emakina. I'm highly interested in booze, with a focus on whisk(e)y. I like to listen to loads of music and read quite some books. I'm married to Anneke, have a daughter Ot, a son Moos and a cat called Kikker (which means Frog, in Dutch). I live in Krommenie, The Netherlands.
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