The Aberfeldy distillery was built a quarter of a mile east of Aberfeldy village by the Dewar brothers. Tommy and John Jnr, to supply fillings for the increasingly successful blends. We’ve had our fair share of Aberfeldy in the past but this new expression, which was introduced mid-2018, is quite special. This GTR exclusive expression is finished in the finest Madeira casks, spending up to 12 months in the ex-wine casks before bottling. Two types of Madeira casks were sourced to finish two types of expressions: the 16 and 21-year-old; using ex-Malvasia Malmsey – the most famous and also the richest, sweetest style and ex-Bual – dark in colour, with medium-rich texture.
On the nose: you’ll get a waft of pineapple, apples, lemon zest, vanilla and poached pears. These initial notes are closely followed by notes of marzipan, cinnamon, star anise, brown sugar and candyfloss. Completing the nose are notes of fennel, butterscotch, maple syrup, figs, a subtle nuttiness and perfume. On the palate: those sweet pineapple notes a ever-present, as well as some tropical notes, vanilla and walnuts. Spicy notes of cinnamon and star anise start ti emerge, followed by lemon zest, aniseed, brown sugar and a meaty note. Rounding-off the palate are notes of stem ginger, bitter dark chocolate, tobacco, figs and light floral notes. The finish: is long, sweet and spicy, with lingering nuttiness and oak.
The verdict: The 21yo Aberfeldy is a lovely dram, so when I first heard of this 21yo expression that had been finished in Madeira casks, I wasn’t too sure about what to expect? This 21-year-old Madeira Cask Aberfeldy is a beautiful dram from nose to palate and offers up some lovely, light enticing notes, that are very well balanced. Bottled at 40%, this 21yo expression really doesn’t require any water, however, feel free to add some if required for your taste. Leaving it to breathe for 5 – 10 minutes also yields more notes.
Aberfeldy 21 Year Old Madeira Cask Single Malt Scotch Whisky is exclusive to Global Travel Retail and will cost you approximately £190
For more information on this 21-year-old expression, visit the official Aberfeldy website.