The GlenDronach distillery was established in 1826 by founder James Allardice, at a time when both sherry and port were ‘de rigueur’, with the finest port pipes travelling along Portugal’s Douro River, destined for the wine cellars of Scotland’s gentry. This GlenDronach spirit has been matured in the distillery’s signature Pedro Ximénez and Oloroso sherry casks, followed by a second maturation in some of the finest port pipes from the majestic Douro Valley of Portugal. The casks used to make this 10yo Port Wood expression have been expertly selected and married by The GlenDronach Master Blender, Dr Rachel Barrie, The GlenDronach Port Wood is a rich and fruity ten-year-old limited release to be savoured.
On the nose: you’ll be welcomed by notes of raisins, currants, plums, vanilla and a hint of lime zest. These initial notes are closely followed by notes of marzipan, dark chocolate and strawberries. Notes of cinnamon, nutmeg and mixed spices start to emerge, followed by black pepper and red apples. Rounding-off the nose are notes of cherry drops, honey, sandlewood, stem ginger, salty caramel and a hint of mint. On the palate: those notes of dark chocolate are ever-present, followed by strawberry jam, rich fruits, blackberries, bramble apples and mandarins. Notes of cinnamon and mixed spices start to appear, alongside notes fo cherry bakewells, gingerbread and honey. Completing the palate are notes of toasted oats, orange peel, aniseed and mint. The finish: is medium/long, bittersweet, with lingering notes of cherry pie, subtle spices, almonds and stewed forest fruits.
The verdict: This 10-year-old Port Wood expression from GlenDronach had me at port wood. I’d already had some idea of what of what to expect, having sampled their peated port wood last year. The Port Wood has got a perfect balance of lighter, warm, summery notes combined with Glendronach’s signature sherry undertones and a touch of summer. With an ABV of 46%, it doesn’t require any water in my opinion. Though if you feel the need to, then do so until it’s just right for you.
Glendronach Port Wood Single Malt Scotch Whisky can be found for approximately £60 online or in some specialist whisky shops.
For more information on The 10 Year Old Port Wood, visit the official GlenDronach website.