With most clubs associated with distilleries or bottlers you wonder what it’s for. In a lot of cases it is barely more than a quarterly newsletter and some ‘exclusive’ section of their website that barely offers any added value.
Of course, in a lot of cases there’s a bottling every one or two years with a varying amount of interest. I remember Speyburn doing an amazing one a few years ago that was also included in a Twitter Tasting. It was affordable. On the other hand there’s the White Stag releases from Arran Distillery that are ridiculously expensive, in general.
There’s the other kind of benefit of which you don’t know you have them until you visit the distillery. This was the case with the Warehouse 24 thing from Balvenie, which netted us an amazing dram during the tasting after the tour in 2015.
Then there’s the Springbank Society and Cadenhead’s Club (they sure love their alliterations). I became a member of the Springbank Society some 11 years ago and last year the Cadenhead’s Club followed suit. Shortly after they did their first Club exclusive bottling of this 25 year old Glen Grant, finished in a Sherry Hogshead for 3 years. At 75 quid.
Of course, modern Glen Grant isn’t 70s Glen Grant, but I wasn’t going to let such an opportunity pass me by. Here’s my tasting notes:
Sweet tropical fruits. Orange, peach, some banana too. Some oak, autumn leaves and dark, crusty bread. Quite complex with some black pepper behind the sweetness.
Dry, spicy with pepper at first. Far less sweet, but still fruity. Some bitter hints with peach stones. Peach, orange. The spices are a bit autumnal.
Here the sweetness comes back, but not to the same level as the nose. A very well balanced finish with slightly peppery spices, sweet tropical fruits and oak.
This is a very good whisky. The sherry is very present for the relatively short time the whisky spent in a sherry cask. It’s not similar to 70s Glen Grant because that’s just in another league, but for a modern one this is cracking. I love the balance between the wood spices, the bitterness and the fruit.
Of coure, it’s still available in the secondary market for 300 pound, so only a 300% increase in less than a year.
Glen Grant 25, 1993-2018, 50.8%, Cadenhead’s Club