Glendronach is of course known for their sherried whiskies, but every once in a while you encounter something different from this Highland distillery. Like this Glendronach 2003 13 Years Old bottled for The Duchess, which has matured in Virgin Oak.
The Duchess is a small independent label from Dutch specialist shop Best of Whiskies. They’ve selected this virgin oak Glendronach as their second ever bottling, with an Ardbeg 25 Years Old (which I’ll review soon) being their inaugural release. This Glendronach is a-typical, but quite tasty.
Glendronach 2003 13 Years Old (53,9%, OB for The Duchess, C#1751)
Nose: This noses beautifully. Obviously quite a lot of oak influence with loads of coconut shavings and a big whiff of vanilla beans. Some cinnamon too. A nice fruitiness with tinned pineapple and peaches, even becoming a bit floral after a while. Taste: It’s no surprise that this shows similarities to a bourbon. Dry, with a good amount of triple sec and lots of spices. Cinnamon, ginger. Some chili pepper too. A whiff of aniseed. Not as balanced as the nose is. Finish: Long and drying. Spicy.
Not your average Glendronach. The virgin oak has made its mark on the whisky, especially the palate, which is quite bourbon-esque, although it has become a tad too dry maybe. The nose is gorgeous, by the way. Available for just over 80 euro.