Glenfarclas 21, 47.9% – OB for the Independent Whisky Bars of Scotland

… And as far as my experience with those bars goes, that means Fiddlers’ in Drumnadrochit.

I bought this last June when I was there with one of my best friends, JPH. We spent the night there, while drinking too much and sleeping too little, and a drive to Campbeltown the next day. On top of that, I was slowly getting sick due to my wife and three kids being ill the week before. You might imagine the drive 5 hour drive, but you shouldn’t.

Anyway, this whisky then. I guess all has been written about Glenfarclas by now, and I don’t have any personal experience to add. I’ve not reviewed many because I don’t really drink many, and I also don’t post as much as I review. So, there might be some long-lost Glenfarclas reviews in my Google Keep, or my notebooks. Who knows? (not me, that’s a given).

Also, what’s nice is that these Indie Whisky Bars have made this a series with a cracking Highland Park, and also Ballechin. I bought the first and skipped the latter because I’m not a huge fan of Ballechin. Also, on that first day in Scotland I had already bought this Glenfarclas, and the distillery exlusive at Glenturret. With Cadenhead’s Warehouse Tasting looming the next day, I decided to be, well, not exactly thrifty…

20191024_220258Sniff:
Sweet and spicy with some roasted malt, lots of wood pulp and some old fruits. A very classic Glenfarclas. A hint of black pepper and aged cheddar, baking spices with a slightly bitter edge. The bitterness is a bit of a mix between almonds and twigs.

Sip:
The palate is very gentle, and very spirit driven. Grain driven even. There’s a lot of malt, spices and roastiness. More like buttered toast than coffee. Some wood spices too, quite a lot even. But the spirit gets enough room to shine… A very bread like palate, but after a minute or two of swimming (yes, that long) the sherry gets more room to shine and the spiciness changes. It gets a bit more fruity (peaches, apricots) and more nutty (hazelnuts).

Swallow:
The finish is very dry, surprisingly so. The bread and spices remain, the combination of these two gives me hints of slightly burnt toast. Some hints of rye bread, but with a hint of sherry fruit and nuttiness.

This is a slightly strange dram. It’s a lot less sweet than I initially expected of a Glenfarclas of this age, and it’s very spice driven. I feel the cask and the spirit are in very good harmony, with both adding a lot of flavor and complexity to the whisky. What helps is that it has been given time to mature. Cracking stuff!

89/100

Glenfarclas 21, 47.9%, OB for the Independent Whisky Bars of Scotland

These whisky bars are: Artisan, Bon Accord, Dornoch Castle Hotel, Fiddler’s, Highlander Inn, The Pot Still.

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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