The Whisky Exchange Christmas Malt, Glenfarclas, 17yo, 58.7%

Christmas Malt 2.jpgYesterday a brand new sample arrived from The Whisky Exchange. It was their Christmas Malt for the upcoming festive season. According to their own press release it is “a 17-year-old Speyside from the canonical mystery family-owned distillery”. 

Quite a clear statement for anyone that’s even just slightly informed regarding undisclosed Speyside distilleries. Also, the Oloroso sherry casks hint at a certain trend from said distillery.

The information regarding the bottle was embargoed until this morning, which generally means two things: Keep quiet about it until then. But also: We’d love for you to publish your stuff exactly then, to get some traction. I’m not known for being a compliant guy, but let’s try this for a change!

Christmas Malt.jpgSniff:
Rich and somewhat earthy sherry. Lots of tropical fruit, with peaches and dates. A gentle bit of oak. The cold soil of dunnage warehouses.

After a minute or so, there’s suddenly a lot more barley and slightly yeasty scents. Slightly funky even, not unlike English ale.

Sweet and quite strong at first. Some peppery heat with dry oak. There’s a lot of fruit too but less sweet than on the nose. Barley, barley sugar, oak, peaches and plums. It gets more syrupy later on.

A sweet, syrupy and smooth finish. Loads of tropical fruits. A lot more gentle than expected.

So, while this is not a very surprising whisy from Glenfarclas, it is a rather good one. It doesn’t really do things that you don’t expect, although the barley and gentle yeasty, wash like flavors are not THAT common either. In my book, this means they’ve selected a very good cask, which shows a bit of the distillate, but also enough character from the quality casks used.


The Whisky Exchange Christmas Malt, Glenfarclas, 17yo, 58.7%, available for 75 pounds.

Thanks to The Whisky Exchange for supplying the sample!


About Sjoerd de Haan-Kramer

I'm very interested in booze, with a focus on whisky. I like to listen to loads of music and play lots of Magic: the Gathering, and board games too. I'm married to Anneke, have two daughters Ot and Cato, a son Moos and a cat called Kikker (which means Frog, in Dutch). I live in Krommenie, The Netherlands.
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