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Allways been fond of glenfarclas, partly because it is the last family owned distillery in scotland, but also for the quality of their malts.
My favourite has been the 105 ever since i first tasted it 6-7 years ago, the batch from last year i would probably describe as the best sherry-monster ive tasted thus far. This is this years batch, so let's see how the veteran holds up.
Nose: Immediately i am slapped in the face for my youthful insolence, as if being punished, for even temporarely doubting this malts resilient contradiction to the well-established thesis that is batch-quality variation. We all know that variations occur between batches, it's inevitable, question is, how big? Well the nose, as i said, contradicts the faint doubts i had directly by bathing my olfactory senses (my nose) with the most brutal yet sophisticated sherry noses one could wish for, as good, but slightly different than last years. Here you get a fabulous sherry nose with first ripe apples, oranges, jerez oranges, figues, dates. Then after the sherry tones comes salty butter toast, honey coffee beans, and dare i say even some faint tomatoe-sauce beans is this a british breakfast?? Finnish off with some lovely corianders, baking spices and peppers, wonderfull nose.
Palate: The arrival is an explosion of flavour. The sherry complexities assert themselves on the arrival even the buttery toast has a say, giving the whisky a body early on. Then taking over the body is a wonderfull biscuity/figue note alongside barley sugars. That developement is fabulous, the whisky juggles between the sherry fruits, the baking spices and barely sugar, figue... cake...almost?? Fantastic! There are so many layers to this whisky batch-to-batch, fascinating, a multi-layered quality your mind and palate has troubles to fathom at times.
The finish is also great, but this is where the 105 from yesteryear was better. This one's still very decent: A nutty complexity quickly replaced by rancio-wine and nearly port-red-wine sauce? Great indeed. This then leaves the finnish to some very good quality wood taninns, although the complexity of these tannins were greater in the previous 105.
All that said however, this 105 proves that this malt is the veteran amongst the very competitive club of Cask strength Sherry Bombs. It isn't as good as its older brother, but... that would be a lot to ask for...really. Fabulous whisky, still going strong.