Google Two Glenlivet, sixty years apart

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Hi, this is one of our (almost) daily tastings. Santé!

October 10, 2017


Two Glenlivet, sixty years apart

Both by Gordon & MacPhail! Granted, this session won’t make much sense, but in a way, and as G&M are a family business, I thought it would be interesting to try to find some kind of parentage between a Glenlivet 2002 and the new 1943, both nurtured and bottled by the very honourable and most respected Elgin company. Game?

Glenlivet 2002/2017 (43%, Gordon & MacPhail, distillery label)

Glenlivet 2002/2017 (43%, Gordon & MacPhail, distillery label) Three stars and a half Doesn’t just everyone love this old label? Colour: white wine/straw. Nose: it’s a very lightly sherried Glenlivet, so we’re in front of mother nature, with a whole basket of orchard fruits, namely apples, pears, and plums, before wee notes of biscuits appears, as well as a handful of raw barley. In the background, a few rose petals, and drops of Guinness. I hope it’s OK to quote a Diageo brand in this context ;-). Mouth: excellent and so very typically Glenlivet. Apple cake, poiré (pear cider), perhaps some Turkish delights, a wee fizziness (Schweppes), and simply apple liqueur – the one they make in Spain. A touch of white pepper and cinnamon. Finish: medium, fresh, always a tad fizzy, and rather all on apples. One of the best ciders ever. Comments: classic, a perfect and very honest everyday malt that will never disappoint you. SGP:541 - 84 points.

Glenlivet 1943/2013 (49.1%, Gordon & MacPhail, Private Collection, first fill sherry hogshead, cask #121, 40 decanters, issued 2017)

Glenlivet 1943/2013 (49.1%, Gordon & MacPhail, Private Collection, first fill sherry hogshead, cask #121, 40 decanters, issued 2017) Five stars Glenlivet was one of the only three working distilleries left in 1943 (or was that four?) but it ceased production in the spring. This particular Glenlivet was distilled in January, 1943, stored at the distillery for around twenty years, and then moved to G&M’s facilities for further ageing. Even if the cask was disgorged in 2013, it’s only now that this lovely decanter is launched. No need to say that it’s a privilege to be able to taste such an old and venerable glory. Oh and I promise I won’t quote Winston Churchill, you have my word! I’ll just add that the fact that it remained at approx 49% vol. after seventy years in wood says a lot. Many siblings would have been flat dead…

Colour: deep mahogany. Nose: very old oloroso, old walnut wine, antique shop, tamarind jam, drops of maraschino, some slightly acidic coffee (those are the best anyway), a wee amount of coal tar, and then rather fresh artisan marzipan, like the excellent ones that make in Bavaria. Oops, almost forgot to mention black chocolate, and thin mints, and the blackest pipe tobacco. And teak oil. And many honeys. Mouth: good, there’s good oak and there’s bad oak. Good oak is when a lot of oak – and there is a lot of oak here – translates into sappy, pine-y, resinous flavours rather than just drying black tea and cinnamon. Also massive amounts of chocolate and coffee at first (of the highest order) and then the freshest citrus, which is, honestly, a miracle. We’re talking bergamots, bitter oranges, kumquats, tangerines… I have to say I am surprised. Also speculoos and perhaps one juniper berry. Forgot to mention the sherry’s walnuts. Finish: long, NOT drying (another miracle), and full of anything orange-y. Oranges are any very old malt’s best friends if you ask me. Comments: I was not expecting this, honestly. Too bad I’ll have to sell a car… SGP:462 - 94 points.

Conclusion, sixty years equal ten points. Not!

More tasting notes Check the index of all Glenlivet I've tasted so far






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