GlenDronach The Hielan 8

Danish Cookies and uncle at Christmas

Reviewed by
Connosr member:



22nd Jan 2016

Reviewer rating:


About this score:

  • Nose: 21
  • Taste: 21
  • Finish: 19
  • Balance: 22

Best price to buy online:

Tasting Notes by cricklewood

My brother invited me over to try this. From what I can gather it's a bit different than the regular GD house style in that it leans more on the bourbon barrels than Sherry. I'm not certain if it's mix of different barrels or a case secondary maturation, little details exist.

Don’t want to stir the pot but it’s nice to see 8 years on the front rather than one of those tired marketing tags (distiller’s … Founder’s… Rare… Select… much like masturbation It’s fun but not like sex). It reminds me of older scotch bottles that often had 6 or 8 years tags on them I don’t think anyone assumed they were swill.

Nice color not quite the sun yellow gold of bourbon so that must be the sherry casting a bit of rust into it.

Nose: Spirity, chewy toffee, vanilla, slight lemon pledge, after while it opens up into golden raisins, orange blossom/floral, a little orange oil, dried apricots (those jujube like Californian ones).

Taste: Spun sugar, grape gummy candy, mouth-watering, marshmallow and cocoa, buttery, malted milk balls.

w/ water brings out more of the citrus and malt, round and waxy with tangerines and digestive biscuits/Danish butter cookies

It’s spirity but not burning; the finish is not overlong but doesn’t drop off a cliff either. Reminds me a bit of adults at Christmas.

If it’s priced right I recommend it, especially if you like the old school spirit-style that walks the tight rope on sherry. It’s nothing like GD15, 18 or 21 though.


Whisky details




The Hielan 8




Pale Gold



Nozinan wrote:

mmmmm.. sounds more like a 88 than an 83....

22 January 2016 21:07

maltmate302 wrote:

@Nozinan I agree that it does sound tasty but at £32 for the 8YO and £34 for the 12YO is it worth buying?

22 January 2016 21:53

cricklewood wrote:

@Nozinan I'm trying to be a little conservative in my scores also it's not the most complex or multi-faceted malt. What it offers it does well.

@maltmate302 It's the same here locally it's a 6$ difference between the two. I would say though the taste profile is different, worth a try or a share among friends.

22 January 2016 23:12

maltmate302 wrote:

@cricklewood that's good to know, an affordable high quality Glendronach with a different profile to the 12,could well be worth a little investment!

22 January 2016 23:17

talexander wrote:

I tasted it last night at a dinner - and wasn't that impressed. While I don't disagree with your specific notes, it seemed fairly flat to me compared to other GlenDronachs. Didn't quite work for me.

23 January 2016 04:33

cricklewood wrote:

@talexander I'm sorry to hear it wasn't to your liking it happens. I hope I didn't hype this up too much, wasn't my intention. I found it to be an honest whisky, simple entry-level stuff done well (46%,non-chill,not all toffee vanilla).

23 January 2016 15:15

talexander wrote:

@cricklewood, no I didn't read your review until after I had tasted it. Hey, to each their own - vive la difference!

23 January 2016 15:33

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