glenallachie 2009 14 years 900609 whisky exchange review

GlenAllachie 2009 14 Years (The Whisky Exchange)

Fully matured in an ex-sherry butt. Think about that. It’s not very common for GlenAllachie, which is often finished or re-racked. But not this GlenAllachie 2009 14 Years for The Whisky Exchange. It would seems this cask was inherited from the previous owners, and didn’t need any tinkering with by Billy Walker.

It’s been a remarkable journey for GlenAllachie, transforming from an afterthought to one of Speyside’s better-known distilleries in less than half a decade. Billy Walker’s unparalleled experience with cask management played a huge part in this. More than maybe anyone else, he has proven to be capable of reshaping a whisky’s destiny.

Walker has been critiqued for his ingenious bending of the rules regarding single casks. Although to be fair, bending of the rules is probably even too strong. He just saw an inefficiency and took advantage of it. The results spoke for themselves.

But there is something slightly more special about a whisky just being left to its own devices. Filled into a cask one day and disgorged 14 years later with only nature interfering. That’s what GlenAllachie 2009 14 Years for The Whisky Exchange is. A high strength but relatively low outturn (261 bottles) for an ex-sherry butt.

It comes at a price though. This (admittedly gorgeous) whisky is yours for 150 pounds.

glenallachie 2009 14 years 900609 whisky exchange

GlenAllachie 2009 14 Years (60.3%, OB for The Whisky Exchange, C#900609)

Nose: Ooh-wee! This seems to have been a proper sherry cask. A very classic profile. Hints of stroopsoldaatjes (traditional Dutch caramel-flavoured candy), but also juicy fruits like blackcurrants, strawberries and cherry gelato. There’s also just a touch of fennel, as well as pralines, candied oranges and tobacco. A sliver of honeysuckle and sultanas too. Quite delicious!
Taste: Punchy but not aggressive. Hints of grapefruit, dried apricots and raspberry. Remarkably refreshing. There’s also a touch of figs, something slightly honeyed, a pinch of black pepper and even some mocha.
Finish: Medium to long. A touch of crushed mint leaves, but mostly lingering fruits and subtle spices.

It's been a while since I've had a relatively young sherry-matured whisky of such high quality. Everything just works and is well-integrated. There's no detracting elements at all. Just quality stuff.

Sample provided by The Whisky Exchange

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