As you may or may not know, Glenfiddich, was founded in 1887 by William Grant and family run to this day, is perhaps the most famous of all of Scotland’s single malts and is equally famous for the rarity of its single cask bottling’s. Malt Master, Brian Kinsman, is always looking for some a bit different, some sort of ingenious innovation in scotch whisky. We’ve previously looked at some of Glenfiddich’s rarer expressions, however, strangely enough we’ve never really delved into one of their core range expressions: the 15-year-old Solera. The Glenfiddich 15-year-old is made up of three types of oak cask, sherry, bourbon and new oak. These casked are then married it in a unique handcrafted Oregon pine Solera vat, which is always kept at least half full, to give it a beautiful balance and create a deliciously harmonious, consistent and complex whisky that gets increasingly complex over time.
On the nose: you’ll experience initial notes of damsons, honey, pineapple, crisp red apples and vanilla. These notes are closely followed by notes of poached pears, lemon zest, cassia-bark and star anise. Notes of sanguinello oranges, brown sugar, almonds and butterscotch start to appear. Completing the nose are notes of green herbs, mint and a hint of white pepper. On the palate: are those notes of damsons, honey and apples, alongside a tropical note and vanilla. Spicy notes of cinnamon, mixed spices and star anise start to emerge, against a backdrop of aniseed. Rounding-off the palate are notes of toffee, butterscotch, bitter of dark chocolate, a hint of sanguinello oranges, green herbs and mint. The finish: is medium, sweet, with lingering spices, orange peel and cremé brûlée .
The verdict: Suffice to say, I’ve tasted my fair share of Glenfiddich but some how I’m always left slightly disappointed with their core range expressions. This 15yo expression does have a little more intrigue. It is nicely balanced and offers a lot more than expected but could perhaps do with a little more punch in my humble opinion. Bottled at ABV 40% in a 70cl bottle this is a dram that doesn’t require any water, in my opinion – though if you do need to then only add a very small amount.
Glenfiddich 15 Year Old Single Malt Scotch can be found online or in-store at any well-stocked whisky shop for approx. £42 For more information on this Solera 15 year-old expression, visit the official Glenfiddich website.