GlenDronach 14 Year “Sauternes Finish”

GlenDronach 2This proud distillery was forced to close its doors in 1996 but thankfully reopened in 2001. Ownership has changed hands several times since it was founded in 1826, ranging from such notables as Scottish writer Sir Walter Scott to Charles Grant, son of the Glenfiddich distillery founder. If such luminaries found merit in GlenDronach, we feel in good company sharing their appreciation.

Distillery: GlenDronach
Region: Highland
Age: 14 years
Strength: 46%
Price: $79.39
Maturation: Sauternes wine casks
Location: Aberdeenshire
Nose: Toast, vanilla, heather, gardenia, orange zest, creamed honey
Palate: Round and satisfying. Toasty oak, lemon, small peat
Finish: Short and sweet

Comments: A bit of water is recommended, though not essential.

Adam – I’m still not sure about this one, maybe because I tried it when there was still snow on the ground. I think it calls for warmer climes to be properly enjoyed. There are definitely a host of flavors vying for attention, though none of them seem to win out beyond the sweetness driven from the cask finishing. It is not unpleasant, however, and the smell is very enjoyable. Forget drinking this stuff, I’d be happy enough sniffing it on a bright spring day.

Kate – This is definitely a Scotch that reminds me of spring. That does not mean you can’t drink it year round but with the floral, milky, sweet flavors it reminds me of a spring day when bees are finally buzzing around new blossoms. The nose has quite a few layers to it including smoke, heather, creamed honey, and a hint of milk chocolate. The taste is spicy and sweet with hints of heather, toasted oak, and lemon. This doesn’t have a long finish but it fades away, appropriately, like spring fades into summer.

Meghan – This was my first ‘find’ for the club so it will always hold a special spot for me. It also is good mention that this is the first Scotch that introduced the founders to the idea of adding just a bit of water. A drop opens up the nose and brings delightful lemony aspects to the forefront of the palate. It is a spring/summer Scotch though. It’s light, bright flavors and short finish have a hard time holding up against the bleak midwinter darkness. But it is worth breaking out during a late winter surprise thaw just to remind yourself that yes, even in Minnesota, winter will end and warmer days will come again.