Sometimes in life we get to spoil ourselves, sometimes an opportunity comes along that we just can’t turn down.. Well that’s where I am tonight, I have in front of me the most wonderful smelling whisky imaginable… Glenfarclas as we all know produce some of the finest sherried whisky available anywhere, and the one I have in front of me is no exception..
Since 1865 Glenfarclas has been owned and managed by just one family, the Grants of Glenfarclas. On the 8th of June 1865 John Grant acquired the tenancy for the Rechlerich Farm and as part of the transaction purchased the Glenfarclas Distillery for £511.19S.0d. To this day Glenfarclas is one of only a few distilleries in Scotland to remain family owned and managed. Now in the hands of the fifth and sixth generation of the family, the Grants remain committed to the vision of creating the best quality Single Highland Malt Scotch Whisky, in the traditional Speyside style.
I am a big fan of the family cask range as they offer a unique insight into what Glenfarclas is all about, in every bottle we learn a little more about the distillery and the history behind it..
The Family Casks range is a unique collection of single casks from the distillery. Launched back in 2007, the collection initially comprised of 43 single cask bottlings, with one cask from every year from 1952 to 1994. It is the intention of the distillery to keep offering these single casks, hence since 2007 there have been further releases, to replace casks which have sold out, and to extend the range to include ongoing vintages. The Family Casks are bottled at cask strength and natural colour, allowing you to explore the subtle differences between casks and the history of family owned Glenfarclas.
I have had the pleasure of sampling and reviewing several casks from the range from my own collection and a couple of samples obtained through tough negotiations.. This is a bottle that was laid to rest way back in 1959, and I feel extremely privileged to be able to sit down and savour the finished article..
This bottle is from cask 1821, and is one of only 121 bottles produced, this was bottled at 46.4%abv and is from a sherry hogshead.
Nose.. Phenomenal.. I have been sitting and nosing for around 30 minutes now and when I say I could sit all night, I really could sit all night ! This has so many aromas.. Big aromas of dark fruits, everything from dates, figs, raisins and sultanas, candied orange and wild blackberries. Big toffee notes mingle with butterscotch and brandy butter on top of warm mince pies.. Pipe tobacco and aniseed notes rise up in wave after wave of pure pleasure..
Palate.. Of course it’s big.. Masses of dried fruits but very drying on the palate with quite an earth feeling, rich toffee and dark syrup flavours coat the tounge, while festive spices come to the front with cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg all taking turns to be noticed, sugared almonds, candied orange and strong black coffee notes mingle with bitter chocolate and liquorice/aniseed flavours.. Apple strudel and muscovado sugar just make this extremely devine..
Finish .. Insanely rich, dry and so very very long.
Thoughts… This whisky is insane.. The flavours and aromas are stunning. This is my oldest whisky to date and I only wish I could afford to buy more.. It is not often you get a whisky that makes you forget about time but this one did.. This review is bordering on 2 hours and I really don’t care if it takes another 2 hours to finish the dram off. Even looking at the glass you can see where the whisky has run down the sides it is that thick and so so dark in colour, I very rarely mention colour but this is literally so dark in colour it is off the spectrum.. Everything about this whisky is good, sometimes the nose can exceed the palate but not in this case, the nose just sets you up perfectly for what your about to taste on the palate.. For me.. This really is perfection in a glass. This will take some beating for my whisky of the year.