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Glendronach 15 Year Old Revival Sherry Cask

Move over Macallan

0 892

@JulesReview by @Jules

5th Jan 2016

0

  • Nose
    23
  • Taste
    23
  • Finish
    22
  • Balance
    24
  • Overall
    92

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Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

Last weekend I had the pleasure of tasting this again for the 1st time in almost two years… and oh my, I had forgotten just how much of a home run this malt is.

Plenty has been said about this whisky – the ‘Revival’ truly is the high-class sherry wonder that it is made out to be. So ridiculously smooth… it offers wave after wave of sherry goodness with toffee, chocolate orange, dates, raisin & coffee-bean nuttiness - all swirling around a subtle, spicy wood centre…

This is most certainly no one-dimensional sherry bomb. Contained herein is far more depth & character than ANYthing I’ve encountered at this price point. It is layered and complex. There are both meaty, savory notes AND sweet, fruity sherry flavours present in equal measure. Like some hâute-cuisine oriental dish based on fish-sauce, spices and caramel sweetness, this is a Scotch that satisfies each and every part of the taste and olfactory sense.

Make no mistake, getting this kind of depth and flavor requires not only very good ex-Oloroso casks - but intensive, expert cask management. I have NO idea how GlenDronach manage to supply this kind of quality without operating on a loss in today’s market.
I’d go so far as to say that this is quite simply THE best value Scotch of the last 6 years.

Consider the following: GlenDronach distillery was mothballed in early 1996, and there is no known stock from between late 1995 and 2002, when it was reopened. That means a bottle of 15yo Revival you purchased this past year is pretty much all of 20 years old, at the very least. If I got hold of a 20yo ex-Oloroso single malt cask containing this kind of quality tomorrow, slapped a sexy label on it and put a big fat ’20 YEARS OLD’ on the front then I’d be selling it for 200 bucks a pop, easy.

The GlenDronach 15yo Revival is as complex, smooth and mouth-wateringly good as the older Macallan 18’s (early 90’s vintages). The difference between these two malts here in Europe is a cool €240 / 290$ US.

You can keep your Aberlours, Macallans and Karuizawas - I'll be drinking my stash of Glen-D 15 for the foreseeable future, thanks very much!

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8 comments

@Nozinan
Nozinan commented

I respect your appreciation for this malt. I did like it when I tried a 50 cc miniature, and I recall preferring it to the 18 YO Allardice.

It's currently not available in Ontario so I think there is still a place for A'Bunadh, Mac CS where possible, glenfarclas 105...

I should say though, that my recent brush with a 17 YO 1994 Gen-D CS single cask has me quite keep to pick some up if I can find them at the right price. My own bottle, distilled the year I started medical school (2 months after me) will be opened upon my retirement.

5 years ago 0

@Nozinan
Nozinan commented

quite keen, not keep.

5 years ago 0

@Victor
Victor commented

@Jules, thank you for a very lovingly written review.

Like you with Aberlour A'bunadh, I really WANTED to love the Glendronach 15 Revival which I have sampled on at least two different occasions from different bottles. I was very disappointed because I expected great things, and I expected that I was about to discover a new regular staple for myself in the medium intensity sherried malt area. What I had then, had a sherry which I found dirty and of low quality. I will be be eager to sample the 15 Revival again as quickly as I can, in order to discover whether another bottle will taste better to me. The one sample I have had of Glendronach Cask Strength was fabulous, with unblemished sherry quality, and I am an unabashed fan of that particular Glendronach. (@thecyclingyogi, was that Batch # 3?)

Like you, @Jules, I would like to find whiskies that I am going to love. I don't really enjoy having to report it when I don't like a whisky.

5 years ago 0

@thecyclingyogi
thecyclingyogi commented

i have only ever owned batch 1 & 2, @victor. forgive me, but i can't recall which one i poured for you. both were excellent, however, and i can't definitively state a preference.

i seem to be one of the few people who like both the 18 allardice and (some batches of) the 12 original more than the 15 revival....

5 years ago 0

@Victor
Victor commented

@thecyclingyogi, it must have been Batch # 2 then. My guess is that I also will like the 12 original and Allardice better than the 15 Revival.

5 years ago 0

@Jules
Jules commented

Thanks, @ Victor. I guess there is also a (sometimes cruel) element of luck to contend with when sampling OB's - as of course you know all too well, the quality does vary far more than the average drinker realizes.

Perhaps it is good fortune on my part that I have only ever had very good bottles on this GlenD'15, because I have never encountered anything dirty or sulphury in any of my drams...

5 years ago 0

@Jules
Jules commented

@thecyclingyogi, I enjoyed the 12 though found it too one-dimensional. But it is good value for what you get. Oddly enough I'm no fan of the 18yo, which I found too heavy on the cherry-cola flavour, not something I particularly look for in a Scotch.

5 years ago 0

@vanPelt
vanPelt commented

Wow, @Victor, I am sorry you could not enjoy this one, on both occasions that you tried it. I actually don't remember reading a negative review of the Revival, ever, so I do wonder whether personal taste is at play. I seem to recall that you tend to like drier and/or spicier malts (at least relative to the Revival), and therefore yes you would like the 18yo better, as well as the CS#2 that you mentioned. I have the reverse preference, so I did not like the #2, but I do like their CS#3 much more (which happened to be my last review on Connosr). It's both interesting and frustrating that we can't explore this hobby with perfect foresight. By the way, @Jules, great summary and I happen to agree with all of it. Good that you stocked up when it was abundant and underpriced.

5 years ago 0

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