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Chill filtered 'Dronach

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Wierdo started a discussion

A bit of news for fans of Glendronach. They have sadly ditched the 'non-chill filtered from their labels'

When someone on the Aquavitae barfly Facebook page emailed the distillery to ask them about this they were given some marketing speil I can't recall exactly what but something about maintaining consistency whilst retaining the same level of quality.

Which is obviously nonsense because if you are introducing a process that reduces the quality of the product then by definition you are not maintaining the quality.

7 days ago

23 replies

@OdysseusUnbound

It’s a sad day for Glendronach. I’ve been following this over in various FB groups. The level of marketese being spewed from Glendronach is disappointing. I’ve got an older bottling of the 12 Year and the 15 Year that I’ll keep around, but I’m not likely to purchase anymore from them. Hopefully more Glenallachie comes to Ontario.

6 days ago 5Who liked this?

Wierdo replied

@OdysseusUnbound just don't get the logic. Glendronach has gone from being a barely recognised single malt to a very highly regarded whisky and one of the foremost sherried whiskies out there, in the last 10-15 years. And they've achieved that through building a reputation amongst whisky fans for doing things the right way. So why go back on that?

They've not gone full Balblair yet. But I'll be a bit more reluctant to buy another bottle of Glendronach now.

6 days ago 4Who liked this?

@BlueNote
BlueNote replied

@Wierdo I've liked all the Balblairs I've had, but I haven't bought one for a couple of years. Have they gone off the rails recently?

6 days ago 1Who liked this?

@65glenfarclas

@OdysseusUnbound The real sad day was when Billy Walker sold to Brown Forman. This news was inevitable. I won't be long before the replacement of Macallan becomes another Macallan.

6 days ago 2Who liked this?

@casualtorture

@Wierdo Completely agree. They made their name making a quality product the right way. Why tarnish it?

6 days ago 1Who liked this?

Wierdo replied

@BlueNote to be fair to Balblair they haven't started chill filtering or adding colour, nor have they dropped the abv. But they built a bit of a reputation amongst whisky fans for the quality of their malts when they were bottling the unique vintage releases. They then ditched the vintages went to standard age ranges and whacked the prices up based on the reputation they'd built amongst connoisseurs. The 12 has stayed about the same price. But the 18 had about a 50% price increase on a comparable vintage bottle. And the new 25 was 400% more expensive than the '91 3rd release (26 years old) released by the distillery 3 months before they switched to standard age range bottles and released the 25.

I've not tried the new Balblair range yet (I'm sulking and refusing to give them my custom). But all the reviews I've read are that they're not as good as previous bottlings. Some of the complexity has gone.

6 days ago 2Who liked this?

Wierdo replied

@65glenfarclas chasing the Macallan dollar. This is my fear.

Oh well. Provides a gap in the market for a distillery wanting to produce sherried malts made the right way. Let's hope someone rises to the challenge.

6 days ago 1Who liked this?

@RianC
RianC replied

How disappointing. I know it's business, and I guess they think they will make more $€£¥'s this way, but it is so obviously done to maximise profit over quality that it's hard not to be turned off by such a decision.

I have a 12, 15 and 18 and am happy to work through them. I might get another CF 15, if I can, but that will be it.

They must know that this will go down like a lead balloon with the online community though? Without wanting to sound too snobish, I guess the folk buying whisky at ASDA or wherever won't care.

5 days ago 3Who liked this?

MRick replied

The reputation of the malt rose under Billie Walker, but it was based on production from before the distillery shutdown, given a craft presentation. We don’t really know how good the post-shutdown spirit will be. Chill filtration is not a good sign. Oh well, more Glenfarclas for me.

5 days ago 1Who liked this?

Wierdo replied

Is there any actual truth to this idea that chill filtering helps with overseas sales of Scottish Single Malts because people are put off whisky turning cloudy when ice is added? Can't help thinking it's a bit of a tall story told by the industry to justify standardisation processes.

5 days ago 2Who liked this?

@BlueNote
BlueNote replied

@Wierdo Thanks for your reply. I'm working through the remains of my Balblair 1997 and 2000 vintages and still have an unopened 1990 in the cabinet. I'll hold off on the newer overpriced age stated bottlings for the time being, although I would like to try the 15 some time. Meanwhile, I'll see your sulk and raise you a pout. smirk

5 days ago 2Who liked this?

@RianC
RianC replied

@Wierdo - don't know, sorry. I can see it being an issue though to be honest, especially for those folk who happen to be very rich and also very dumb.

I mean no offence here but I doubt your average 'Asian Joe' can afford single malts, so it would follow (in my own weird logic) that many folk buying them do it as much for prestige as for taste.

Think 80's yuppies in London or NY ... grin

5 days ago 3Who liked this?

@65glenfarclas

@Wierdo The gap is already starting to be filled by none other than the same Billy Walker. Early reviews of Glenallachie seem to be following the path of early Billy Walker "revival" Glendronachs (i.e. old stock re-racked/finished in "fresh", errr, wet "sherry casks"). Buy them (glenallachie) while the price is low...

4 days ago 1Who liked this?

@OdysseusUnbound

@65glenfarclas Glenallachie isn’t cheap here, even by Ontario standards. The 12 Year, 46% abv PX finished Glenallachie sells for $125 or so. Hard no from me.

4 days ago 3Who liked this?

@paddockjudge
paddockjudge replied

@BlueNote, after buying and trying 1991 Balblair 27 YO, I picked up a few more. Giving one to my son next year on his 27th birthday. He's not a fan of cask strength whisky, but he does have a discerning palate. He liked the '91 Balblair very much.

3 days ago 7Who liked this?

@BlueNote
BlueNote replied

@paddockjudge No question he’s cut from the same gene pool as his dad. He’s gonna love that Balblair. Some guys have the best dads...and some dads have the best sons. And there’s much more to that than the luck of the draw. thumbsup thumbsup

3 days ago 5Who liked this?

@ajjarrett
ajjarrett replied

If Glendronach is going the way of chill-filtration for all of its expressions, I wonder two things:

  1. How many people are going to go out and buy up as much of the current stuff, that is unchilled-filtered before it is not available?

  2. If #1 occurs on a large enough scale, or even if it doesn't, how many of us expect the price of the current Glendronach will jump up in price?

Okay, three things:

  1. Does anyone suspect this isn't going to go anywhere and Glendronach will change directions after the outcry by consumers? hahaha Outcry.

yesterday 2Who liked this?

@RianC
RianC replied

@ajjarrett - it will be interesting to see if sales are impacted, but it looks to me like they're aiming more for the mass market with this decision - so definitely quantity over quality. I mean, why else would you? I generally stay off social media, but Id bet the chatter is all negative?

Similarly, I wonder how long Macallan can rest on its reputation from yesteryear? Probably at least through the week stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye

yesterday 4Who liked this?

@ajjarrett
ajjarrett replied

@RianC Hmmm. Well, if they are going for the mass market, and become just like many others, okay. I am happy with what I have, especially my wall-of-16yo Nadurra. Maybe I need to open a bottle when I get my second dose of Pfizer vaccine. I did read somewhere that high strength whisky adds the efficacy of the Pfizer vaccine. Hmmmm. Fantasy and Science are a wonderful combination.

yesterday 4Who liked this?

@Timp
Timp replied

@ajjarrett thats brilliant need to tell me missus that. Lol.

yesterday 2Who liked this?

@65glenfarclas

@OdysseusUnbound I agree with you on the Glenallachie (Ontario) pricing. Early Glendronach's from the Billy Walker era were CHEAP (especially in retrospect) but as the Macallan comparisons built up, the pricing started to creep up rather quickly and the "single casks" became overpriced (not quite to Mac levels but not too far off). I think Glenallachie's pricing may have to do with the reputation Billy Walker built up sprucing up ho-hum whisky by re-racking in wet ("sherry"-like) casks. In any event, recent Glenallachies are getting strong reviews...

2 hours ago 1Who liked this?

@ajjarrett
ajjarrett replied

@Timp

I would be happy to do so.

It also makes self-isolation appealing, and you are likely not to get the so-called 'pandemic burnout'.

11 minutes ago 0

Liked by:

@casualtorture@OdysseusUnbound

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