This is an extremely difficult decision as both myself and Linh, enjoy sherry whiskies and had predicted we’d without question select the sherry butt. Yet there was something about a 100% bourbon matured Glengoyne that captured our interest. As I was driving, I could only nose the samples and look longingly at Linh tasting each and providing feedback. We were in all likelihood debating this choice for about 30 minutes but also engaging our guide in the discussion and whisky stories. Eventually we both decided on the bourbon cask much to our surprise!
The tour begins with a dram of the only No Age Statement Glengoyne currently available which is the cask strength release. So we’ll replicate the tour whiskies starting from the opening act:
Glengoyne Cask Strength, Batch 003, 58.2%
Colour: a setting sun
Nose: caramel, dark chocolate, ginger cake, pepper and a damp forest. Adding water delivers more spicing with cinnamon, sticky honey, biscuits and a fresh laundry
Taste: sherry-lite at first with red berries, melted chocolate, cherries and bourbon biscuits with a chocolate buttercream centre. Water reveals the young shallow nature of this youngster so add with caution.
1997 Bourbon (18 years old), cask number 1793, 57%
Nose: butterycups, honey, limoncello, a dusty well read book, apricots, pineapple and oranges. With water more marmalade notes. Very fresh and vibrant floral notes.
Taste: butterscotch with apple tarte tatin, a rusty quality and vanilla.
2002 Sherry puncheon (13 years old), cask number 785, 60.1%
Colour: amber rust
Nose: rubbed brass, fresh doughnuts, ginger, strawberries, milk chocolate, honeycomb and a menthol cough sweet. Addition of water brings out Millionaires’ shortbread, oranges and pomegranate.
Taste: not as rich as the nose suggests with red grapes, blackberries, rust and a Black Forest gateau with chocolate, cream and cherries.
So there you have it; the Glengoyne No.1 Warehouse experience. Even without the whiskies I enjoyed the tour but they add that little extra something and then you walk away with the 200ml bottle package in a tidy box and neck tag you complete yourself. I’ve tried to keep the photographs here to a minimum, but as always these are in an album on my FaceBook page right here.
After sampling both casks at home I’m glad to say Linh picked the best of the bunch as the bourbon has more depth whereas the sherry butt could do with a few more years to build upon strong foundations.