While most Scotch whisky matures in ex-bourbon casks, not many are actually inspired by bourbon. The Glen Moray 10 Years Fired Oak is. It was finished in heavily charred virgin American oak, so basically the same sort of cask that is used to mature bourbon in. These new casks quickly impart intense flavours but according to Glen Moray’s master distiller at the time of release, the Speyside distillery’s character isn’t overpowered.
You might’ve noticed before I’m not a huge fan of virgin oak. While there are exceptions, to me these types of casks are often too dominant and don’t leave much room for subtleties. In the worst cases it is like chewing on raw oak. Let’s just hope this Glen Moray is as balanced as they claim it is.
Glen Moray 10 Years Fired Oak (40%, OB, 2019)
Nose: A hit of vanilla but also spring leaves, fruity beer and candied bananas. It’s slightly floral and there’s a touch lemon syrup as well. Finally a whiff of raw oak. Taste: The banana and vanilla make an encore but is accompanied by soft spices, like cinnamon. A few tart berries make an appearance as well. The influence of the virgin oak is under control and not too dominant; only a whiff of sawdust. Finish: Quite dry and pretty spicy. Little too much wood here.
Certainly not overpowered by oak. I think it’s good but this won’t set your world on fire. It’s priced accordingly though, so it’s hard to find fault here.