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Master of Malt has given me the chance of tasting the oldest Glenfarclas whisky to date, an outstanding 58 years old single cask cask strength single malt whisky choosen by an elitist tasting panel: Serge Valentin, key member of the internationally renowned Malt Maniacs, Master of Malt’s Sales Director Ben, Michal Kowalski of investment company Wealth Solutions and George Grant, of Glenfarclas.
The cask is a Spanish sherry cask filled on 20 November 1953. The angels have been greedy – after 58 years of slow maturation in Glenfarclas’ traditional Highland Dunnage warehouses, the 1953 cask yielded just 400 bottles, that’s around 280 litres of a cask of between 500 to 600 litres, so around half the cask has been lost to the angels.
How old is it? This whisky was distilled in 1953. For me the date is unfathomable.
My parents wasn’t even born in 1953.
My country was just starting to recover from a civil war that set it to ruins and the whole world was healing from the 2nd World War. And the grandfather of George Grant was distilling this whisky as his father and his grandfather before him had done for years in a small distillery on the North of Scotland.
I have to say I have been waiting for days to taste this one. And today, my first holiday day is the chosen date!
“Maybe the best Glenfarclas I have had? An awesome single malt whisky as every Glenfarclas whiskies are.”
The oldest released Glenfarclas single malt whisky bottled to date.
This stunning single malt has been chosen by a panel of experts, between whom you can find Serge Valentin and George Grant, from the oldest casks that distillery had available by Wealth Solutions in collaboration with Master of Malt.
Only 400 bottles at cask strength has result after 58 years of ageing in a Spanish sherry oak cask.
This dram has a tawny-like color.
Nose (93): more than average.
candies, eucalyptus, wood, spices, candies, flowers, cinnamon.
Like a marvelous wooden box full of violets candies! Really complex and evolving.
Palate (92): powerful, oily.
honey, nuts, wood, spices, figs, flowers, cinnamon, cocoa.
So intense whisky! It is almost smoke on the palate.
Finish (93): long.
honey, wood, flowers, citrus.
So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Glenfarclas 1953 - 58 Years Old with 93 points over 100.
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The oldest and most expensive bottle of my collection, even if this one has never been available for sale. I like this whisky, not that I see myself drinking this single malt but I like it.
I plan doing a vertical tasting of Glenfarclas in the following weeks and this whisky will have an honor place there for sure.
Islay is an island in the west of Scotland that produce a style of single malts that you either love or hate: peated whiskies.
(Photo on top of one of the Jura Pups looking south overseeing the Isle of Islay by Gregor Haslinger)
You may wonder why such an small island have so many distilleries and I hope this article enlighten you and share with us the passion for peated whiskies.
I have tasted already many of the whiskies created at Islay but I really wanted to taste them all in a row so I can compare them side by side. I hate when I taste blindly a whisky and I can’t decide if it is a Caol Ila( most are ) or an Ardbeg.
So come with me in this trip around Islay in nine drams. Oh man! I am sure you can smell the smoke from there.
There is a supermarket brand in Spain that is breaking the market by selling quality products at almost half the price of their competition: Mercadona.
Their technique consists on stocking only one store brand and just another brand at best for most products they have on the store so they have from bread, yogurts, ham, beer and of course scotch at prices that make other supermarkets looks like Harrods!
Well, to the point, they sold a brand of “scotch” whisky called John Cor, yep, the name of the monk who is know for the first written record of distillation of aqua vitae. The bottle of this whisky doesn’t say scotch at all now that I am reading at home and in fact it isn’t a scotch one as it is bottled at Spain… is it Scotch? Is is spanish? Fifty fifty. It is misleading at least because if it is spanish whisky all the label is written in english that not many people is able to understand here in Spain beyond the usual english words as “Sol”, “Paella” and “Playa”
Probably the malt whisky inside this come from Scotland and the rest of the grain whisky is from Jerez which has a strong tradition of distilling alcohol for brandies.
Well, what all the buzz is about? Well, Mercadona sells the 70cl bottle of this John Cor whisky for 4.85€, that are about £3.90. Yep! That’s less than four pounds for a full bottle of blended whisky.
You should know the fact that Spanish Taxes on alcohol are 2.7€ on a full bottle so the price of the whisky and the glass bottle is 2€ in fact. Can you get anything cheaper?
I have been told lots of time that it was a good whisky, that it was awesome for the price and all that bullshit. So I thought about tasting it, anyway I pay up to £30 for a 3cl sample… I can afford 4€ for a full bottle…
So here is the tasting note. Zero expectations before tasting it.
“Not that I was expecting a lot from this John Cor, but I expected a bit more. It is great for cleaning glass by the way”
Scotch blended whisky bottled in Spain.
John Cor is the name of the friar who recorded the first known written reference to a batch of Scotch Whisky on June 1, 1494.
“To Friar John Cor, by order of the King, to make aqua vitae VIII bolls of malt.” — Exchequer Rolls 1494–95, Vol x, p. 487.
This dram has a fino-like color.
Nose (79): average.
toffee, vanilla, floral, alcohol.
Lots of toffee and not much more here. Smells almost like caramel vodka.
So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this John Cor with 78 points over 100.
Maybe with ice and cola it is awesome, but doing it in the same way I do with the rest of whiskies John Cor is a mediocre blended whisky at best… unless you are really budget-constrained you should be drinking something better… afford yourself a luxury whisky such as DYC instead and do a favor to your liver.
Don’t worry for the rest of the bottle! It works great for cleaning glasses.
I need some new presentation cards and I am thinking about using Moo for it. I have already seen some Moo cards and although they are very expensive the quality is great. I will order a few and show you the results.
“Woody and like dust at first but then turns into a marvelous candies and flowers. Highly recommended. ”
A very limited release edition Auchentoshan 1975.
This has been aged for thirty-five years in bourbon casks before bottling. Just 500 bottles of this have been released, and the whisky is described as having a butterscotch and rum& raisin toffee character.
Marvelous candies and floral aromas in this Lowlands single malt whisky.
This dram has a amber-like color.
Nose (91): average.
candies, floral, vanilla, citrus, cinnamon, wood.
“Scrumptious floral whisky. Mourn with me this tragic loss”
A 31 year old Speysider, this was distilled at Miltonduff on the 18th May 1979, it was aged for 31 years in a single hogshead, before bottling by Signatory on the 24th November 2010. A release of 188 bottles.
Mosstowie is whisky distilled at Miltonduff from malted barley, but in column stills! Which by today standards would rule it out as single malt scotch whisky.
This dram has a gold-like color.
Nose (86): average.
floral, honey, candies, nutmeg, vanilla.
Smells like PEZ candies. Interesting.