I didn't like Speyside single malts. I deemed them soft, sweet and meek. At least that's what I thought before the Glenrothes 1985 completely changed me. I guess I always knew the day would come. That day found me sitting in Bourbon and Branch, enjoying Glenrothes 1985 as the front end of a Scotch Flight. I thought it was just going to be a pleasant warmup for the headliner, the Ardbeg Airigh Nam Beist, but the Glenrothes had me at raisins and citrus. Glenrothes 1985 is the gilded invitation I needed to the Speyside single malt party.
Eye: Light Amber
Nose: Lots of fruit and floral with a spiced, woodsmoke undertone
Mouth: Raisins and orange, caramel, a little mulled spice and rose hips and pleasant, smooth layer of woodsmoke.
Finish: Mild, lingering finish that invites another sip
Balance: Very well balanced between the fruit, sweet, spice and smoke (no peaty smoke - all cask).
From that day on I've turned a new, almost lascivious eye toward single malts that begin with Glen-, after an evening with the Glenrothes 1985, and the silkier single malts have already begun finding their way into my liquor cabinet.
Certainly one of my favorites. Quite similar to the 91 but has a bet more umph, and a longer finish. Well worth having in the cabinet.