The first review of 2021 is a 9-year-old Glenrothes from Dràm Mòr. Glenrothes is a Speyside distillery located in Rothes, a town in the very heart of the Speyside region, owned by Edrington. The first thing I would like to talk about is the colour of this Glenrothes. As you may see of my not-so-amazing photo, it has got a beautiful pink tinge to it, almost like that of rosé wine.
It has matured in a first-fill bourbon barrel for eight years, then finished in a Spanish red wine barrique for four months. It was bottled at 55 % and yielded 312 bottles. It is available to purchase from select locations.
If I had been nosing this whisky blind, I am sure that my first guess would be a red wine finish. It bears a distinct resemblance to red wine on the nose, and I am finding a lot of fresh red berries – like strawberries and cherries, creamy vanilla notes, the slight bitterness of orange peel, ginger and some tobacco.
The Glenrothes is gently warming the throat. I am getting those red berries – again, strawberries and cherries, then caramelised sugar, orange – both flesh and peel, ginger and spice, with some of that same tobacco note I got on the nose.
I reviewed this whisky without adding any water, simply because I feel like the added water alters most whiskies in a way that I do not particularly like. In hindsight, I should have added a couple of drops to see if it would have taken down the alcohol a notch as it is quite prominent.
It has a medium-long finish. Notes of caramelised sugar come in strong, then the spice, orange and ginger. I am getting a little influence from the cask on the finish as well, nothing harsh or overpowering, just leaving my tongue feeling a little dry. It ends in something similar to crisp, blushing Pink Lady apples.
Glenrothes is another distillery I do not have much prior experience with, so it is fun to get the chance to try some of their whisky. The longer I nose it, the more it changes and reveals new sides. I find it almost a little shy? It is a very interesting and tasty 9-year-old. It has complexity both on the nose and the palate, it is fresh and very summery. A very nice dram indeed!
First-fill Bourbon Barrel and First-fill Spanish Red Wine Barrique
ABV: 55 %
Dràm Mòr Group Ltd. are family Scotch single cask whisky bottlers, choosing individual casks to showcase the best of every Scottish whisky, originating from the once highly influential town of Dumbarton, which rests in the shadow of its iconic Rock, Dumbarton’s medieval Castle, an ancient capital of the Kingdom of Strathclyde, and which boasts such whisky legacy as Ballantine’s and is home to Pernod Ricard’s Chivas.
A huge thanks to Dràm Mòr for kindly sending me this sample.
Tasting notes and opinions about this release are strictly my own.