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Glen Garioch 1999 Sherry Cask

Average score from 2 reviews and 2 ratings 81

Glen Garioch 1999 Sherry Cask

Product details

  • Brand: Glen Garioch
  • Bottler: Distillery Bottling
  • ABV: 56.3%
  • Vintage: 1999

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Glen Garioch 1999 Sherry Cask

This sample was provided by a friend who warned me that my first tasting would probably be "sulphury", but that if I gave the second half of the sample some time, the sulphur would dissipate. Well, here goes.

Glen Garioch 1999 (14 years old) Batch no 30 56.3 % abv Sample bottled Oct 16, 2018

First tasting (January 16, 2019):

  • Nose (undiluted): oranges, light brown sugar, golden raisins, oak, spent match (sulphur?) that dissipates a bit (but not totally) with a good rest in the glass, and then a mint and balsamic vinegar aroma appears
  • Palate (undiluted): medium bodied, much gentler than the 56.3% abv would suggest, milk chocolate-covered raisins, yielding to a bright grapey note with a bit more oak
  • Finish: medium length, light toffee, wine gums (without the gag-inducing texture of gummies), oak lingering, and a hint of lemons at the tail end.

Second tasting (February 11, 2019) with 1 teaspoon of water added:

  • Nose: raisins, mint, balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, walnuts. The sulphur (spent match, a bit of rubber/eraser) is not as pronounced as before, but it's still there. I feel as though given enough time, the sulphur might disappear altogether, but who knows?
  • Palate: medium bodied, very gentle arrival, oak, brown sugar, raisins, milk chocolate. The bright grape note is diminished significantly with water.
  • Finish: medium length, more oak, a slight waxiness, some lemons, black pepper, a herbal note at the end, rosemary or sage maybe?

This whisky feels "muted" with and without water. Maybe it's me, or maybe this is simply a subtle, nuanced malt. The lingering sulphur would make me wary of purchasing a bottle, but those who don't detect it as strongly would probably enjoy it. The herbal notes on the finish are drying and very interesting. But since I it would appear that I am sensitive to sulphur aromas, there's just no getting around its presence. That's not to say I don't appreciate my friend donating this sample. I do. Some people don't perceive sulphur odours very strongly, and some don't perceive them at all. Unfortunately, I do. It's not overpowering here, but it can't be ignored either.

Luckily I appear to be immune to Sulfured, dirty Sherry. I went through a bottle of this and have a backup. The Glen Garioch 1995 would be more in your wheelhouse I think. Slightly peated, Bourbon cask matured 17 year cask strength and was available recently at the LCBO for $120 when they seemed to come across a bunch of cases and released them at the old 2012 price.

@Astroke I believe I've got a sample of the Glen Garioch 1995 as well, from the same friend. I feel as though I'm turning out not to be a fan of sherry bombs, my penchant for A'Bunadh notwithstanding. I like Tomatin 12 precisely because the sherry didn't overwhelm the malty, ex-bourbon notes. I prefer Glenfarclas 105 to A'Bunadh (Batch 53) precisely because there's more toffee and malt in the 'farclas. So while the sulphur doesn't help things for this particular Glen Garioch, I think it's safe to say that "big sherry" in malt whisky isn't really my thing, with a few exceptions.


Glen Garioch hardly uses sherry casks, so this oloroso sherry matured is a bit of an odd one out. It was released at the end of 2013 and will set you back around 65 EUR.

The aromatic nose offers red berries, salted caramel butter and plums. Some toffee and citrus. Chestnuts. Halfway through some hazelnuts and loads of mint kick in. Dried grass. Hints of pepper and some cinnamon. Parsnip! Creamy and full.

This is a kick to the teeth. Hot and spicy. The sherry is more dominant than on the nose with the usual suspects: plums, sultanas, figs, dades. Maple syrup. Caramelized oranges. Stew of fruit. Honey. Loads of ginger and pepper, now. Mint evolves towards menthol (yep, they are not the same). The palate fulfils the promise of the nose and then some.

The long and spicy finish offers more oranges and liquorice.

Outstanding Highlander as far as I am concerned.

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