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Glenfarclas: 15 vs 17

0 27

@Spitfire
Spitfire started a discussion

I've read and seen some reviews for Glanfarclas 15 yo single malt, but what's available locally is a 17 yo expression which doesn't seem as well reviewed. Is there a difference? I'm wondering if the 15 yo is more common in the UK, while the 17 yo might be an export market bottling.

Any comments or comparisons between the two? I'm kinda wondering if the 17 yo is worth it, when for the same cost I can get another bottle of Aberlour A'Bunadh, or if I should be trying to track down a bottle of GF 15 yo.

8 years ago

27 replies

@Victor
Victor replied

Yes, a big difference. For some they are close in desirability. For me there is no comparison. I'd take the 15 yo every day of the week. From what I've sampled of the age statement and 105 Farclas', I'd take the 15 over all of the other Farclas' except the 40 yo. Canada gets some 15 sporadically, typically around the holiday season. The US gets none. This won't mean much until you taste them. So taste them, one or both. Personally I would not buy a bottle of the 17 if I had a chance for the 15...and I would buy a good batch of A'bunadh over the 17 every time I had the decision to make.

8 years ago 1Who liked this?

@Spitfire
Spitfire replied

@Victor Thanks, Victor. You've confirmed what I'd somehow guessed at, based on reviews I've seen.

8 years ago 0

@hawkscotch
hawkscotch replied

I concur with Victor. George Grant, who is a 6th generation family member from the distillery, spoke at our Whisky Club a few years ago (very funny man!). He personally prefers the 15 yr old over most of their expressions. With that said, I haven't seen a 15 year old in my neck of the woods for over 5 years so I am left with the 17 or 21. The 17 is good but I prefer the 15. If you can find it, the GlenDronach Allardice 18 yr old is worthy alternative. Price point might be higher though.

8 years ago 0

Astroke replied

Love the GF15, price has jumped quite a bit in Ontario compared to other provinces but still worth replacing and soon.

8 years ago 0

@cherylnifer
cherylnifer replied

Afew years ago I went in with a friend to make our first on-line purchase from an international retailer. Given our initial shock regarding shipping cost from U.K. To USA, it made sense to order more bottles to bring down the shipping cost per bottle rate. I ended up with several bottles each of Glendronach 15yo Revival and Glenfarclas 15yo. At that time, neither was sold in USA. And interesting that the Glendronach 15yo Revival had a higher Connsr rating (at that time) than the Glenfarclas 15yo. Both have stood up as quality whiskies.

8 years ago 0

@Spitfire
Spitfire replied

@cherylnifer I'm a big fan of the Glendronach 15 Revival; if the Glenfarclas is in the same class, well then I will have to try it sometime. One problem for me is, neither of these whiskies is readily available in my area.

8 years ago 0

maltmate302 replied

@Spitfire on this matter I agree with everything @Victor has said. In fact I wouldn't entertain buying the 17,, add a few pennies and get the 21 or 25 instead!

8 years ago 0

gfc replied

Speaking of the 25, is it worth the cost? I've been thinking of buying it at $140-160 U.S. It would be the most expensive and oldest whisky i have purchased. Really looking for something that shows it age at a reasonable price.

8 years ago 0

maltmate302 replied

@gfc it's a difficult question to answer but if you want to try a 25 year old whisky there's not much better value than Glenfarclas. If I were you I'd buy a sample or a miniature of it so that you can make a more informed decision. Even though I have a bottle of the 25 there's no way that I think it's worth twice as much as the 15 but it is nice to have the experience of what the extra ageing can do. You really have to ask yourself is it worth it to you?

8 years ago 0

gfc replied

I'd love to get a mini bur my state doesn't allow alcohol to be by mail. Also, the 15 isn't available here. I am looking for the experience of an older whisky as I have tasted my way through many younger expressions. It would be nice to know what an older whisky is like, but my funds are limited. Tough decision...

8 years ago 0

@Spitfire
Spitfire replied

Bought a bottle of GF 15yo today. I'm on a trip away from home, and I've been doing some shopping. Saw the bottle on the shelf, totally didn't expect to see it...

8 years ago 0

@Tom92
Tom92 replied

I have been wondering the same question. Of what I've heard the 17 is big in the Asian countries, lucky number or something. Think I'll have to follow suit and get a bottle of the 15

8 years ago 0

@JasonHambrey
JasonHambrey replied

I had a particularly good bottle of the 17 earlier this year, though I know it was from a good batch. I haven't had the 15, but I did enjoy that 17, though I don't know how susceptible it is to batch variation.

However, with @Victor...a good batch of A'Bunadh beats them all.

8 years ago 0

@FieldMarshal
FieldMarshal replied

I have been thinking of picking up a bottle of the Glenfarclas 15 for sometime now and i finally grabbed one today, have yet to try it, don't think i will be able to wait long. lots of it to be found here on the Island.

8 years ago 0

@Frost
Frost replied

I have tried the 15, but not the 17/

To give you my point of reference I've tried the 10, 15, 21, 25, 30, 40 & 105 Cask Strength. In this line up, the 15 is one of my favourites.

If you can, get yourself the 15.

8 years ago 1Who liked this?

@BlueNote
BlueNote replied

@FieldMarshal. Where are you getting the GF 15? It is not in the BC Liquor Store listings. I assume you are referring to Vancouver Island when you say there is plenty of it on the Island.

8 years ago 0

@FieldMarshal
FieldMarshal replied

That is correct, there is none to be found in bc liquor stores, I have been seeing it everywhere else, ifLegacy liquor on the main land had a few bottles but I just checked and it is all gone there now, I found mine at Liqour plus in Courteney @BlueNote

8 years ago 0

@BlueNote
BlueNote replied

@FieldMarshal Thanks, I'll check around the private retailers. What is the price?

8 years ago 0

@Spitfire
Spitfire replied

@BlueNote I bought mine at the "Liquor Depot" in West Kelowna (Westbank?) for just over $100. Haven't opened it yet...

8 years ago 0

@Spitfire
Spitfire replied

BCLDB carries the GF17yo, which is why I posted this thread to start with.

8 years ago 0

@BlueNote
BlueNote replied

@Spitfire. You also asked for comparison of the two and the consensus seems to be that the 15 is far better than the 17. That's why we are all looking for the 15. It has been available here in the past, but not for some years now and the 17 is a bit of a weakling and not a particularly good alternative.

8 years ago 0

@Spitfire
Spitfire replied

@BlueNote Yes, people seem to prefer the 15yo GF over the 17yo. I started wondering when I saw some GF 17yo in the local BC LDB, but could only find reviews for the 15yo (most of which were positive).

I did find some GF 15yo in a private retailer in Kelowna (well, a chain franchise--see my post above) and bought it. Haven't opened it yet...

8 years ago 0

@hawkscotch
hawkscotch replied

Hey Spitfire...was there still bottles of the 15 at the West Bank liquor depot?

8 years ago 0

@Spitfire
Spitfire replied

@hawkscotch Yes, as of a week ago. This is also where I picked up the Wisers Legacy and locally made Urban Craft Single Malt. I also noticed several Compass Box blends, including Oak Cross, and also the Knob Creek 9yo 100 proof (might have been rye...I don't recall). Overall, a pretty good selection.

They didn't have the High West Rendezvous Rye in stock, though.

8 years ago 0

@Robert99
Robert99 replied

@Spitfire I don't agree completely with what have been said. For me, like Jason Hambrey was hinting, the batch you are getting is more important than the expression. Living in Quebec, we usually get more of the 15 than the 17. The batch variation has been terrible in the last 3 years. the latest 15 and 105 were all about alcohol and I would not recommand to buy them.

On the other hand, I had a nice 17 yo a year ago that tasted almost exactly like the best 15 yo I got so far.

Farclas worked for me when they are not going for power but go instead for refinement. If you like power and spices go for A'Bunadh, a whisky very consistent. If you like refinement and you are a gambler, go for Farclas.

8 years ago 0

@hawkscotch
hawkscotch replied

Hey Spitfire...thanks for the tip. I picked up two bottles of the 15 today. Much appreciated mate!

8 years ago 0