Founded in 1957, the Glen Keith distillery was the first to be opened within the speyside area since the whisky crash of 1898 and ironically sits within sight of Strathisla distillery which just happens to be ( reputedly) the oldest in Scotland.
Initially set up with 3 stills in order to do triple distillation, another two stills were added in 1970 and double distillation was incorporated along with the first gas fired stills in Scotland before steam coils were added.
The distillery was originally set up to provide whisky for the blended market such as Chivas Regal, Passport and 100 pipers but did Release a 10 year old single malt in 1994 and previous to this a bottle under the name of Glen Keith 1983, two peated Malts were also produced and sold under the names Glenisla and Craigduff.
Mothballed in around 1999-2000 the distillery lay silent until 2013 after extensive reconstruction brought the distillery back to life thanks to new owners Pernod Ricard and with a capacity of around 6 million litres the distillery still is a relatively unknown name to many.
The distillery was well known for trialing and innovation and with all the stills being different sizes and shapes this was easily done.
The distillery is equipped with 9 wooden washbacks and 6 stainless steel versions and has a 55 hour average fermentation time.
New make is taken at around 69.3%abv and goes into cask at 63.5% and is all unpeated.
Glen Keith 23 Year Old 1997 cask #72586 – Signatory
Distillery.. Glen Keith
Age.. 23 years
Distilled.. May 1997
Bottled.. November 2020
Cask.. Re-Fill Hogshead
Outturn.. 252 Bottles
Nose.. Soft hints of apple blossom and wild flowers before honey and dried grasses play with the senses… As this opens an inviting warm apple pie note starts to rise with cinnamon, drying barley scents and lemon drizzle cake all making you desperate to dive in…
Palate.. Those apple notes are still evident with poached pears and soft hints of pineapple also evident. Fudge and caramel bring the sweetness whilst there is a soft citrus bitterness and gentle oak tannin that just helps to balance out the flavours.
Finish.. Spices and dried fruits
Thoughts.. Another example of a distillery that has some superb whisky but is unfortunately hidden from most by the fact very little comes out as official bottles, but rather gets hidden within the blends it goes into..
This is one of those whiskies that you can very easily loose track of time with, it is one of those whiskies that as you dive in you get taken to a timeless place where just sitting and enjoying is all part of the experience, it becomes a pleasure to just sit and explore such a wonderful whisky..
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Those light floral fruity notes, especially with a hint of fudge sound so inviting.
I’ve been past this distillery once or twice…definitely one I’d love to have a look around at some point.