Glenfarclas are known for their almost religious traditionalism, sticking with sherry and bourbon casks and staunchly opposing new ideas such as finishes. However, every once in a while, a non traditional gem pops up. When I say non traditional, I only mean that it’s a cask that you don’t traditionally see, because even the whisky found in non traditional casks, fully matured there its whole life.
In 2012, there was a 43 year old Cognac Cask bottling, which I have regrettably not had. However, at the whisky show, a 31 year matured in port casks was on pour, as was a 1966 Fino Sherry cask that I will review at a later date.
The liquid was distilled in 1981 and placed in a first fill port cask yielding 480 bottles and was released last year.
Glenfarclas 31 Year Old Port Cask (42.8% ABV, NCF, NC)
Appearance: Dark gold with rather quick legs.
Nose: Coffee, bittersweet pralines with chocolate-nut filling and notes of gentle spices (ginger and clove).
Palate: This is very different than the “normal” Glenfarclas. The mouthfeel is very dry and the spices are very dominant. You’ll find allspice, clove some nutmeg and turmeric (curcumin).
Linger: The finish is medium, very dry with notes of chocolate, soft spices and coffee, leaving a tingle on the inside of your cheeks.
This expresson is very special. I didn’t get to taste the Congac cask from two years ago, but tasting this completely different animal from Glenfarclas was fun.
In a way, both the special bottles offered at the show, the Port Cask and the 1966 Fino are expressions that vary quite widely from the “regualr character” of the distillery.
Looking forward to your 1966 review – that was a superb whisky in my view. This port one was good, for sure, but overshadowed by the complexity and balance of the ’66 I felt. The fino cask was less overpowering to the whisky than the port one (as I find is often the case).
It’s on the way….
This sounds really good.
Do you know where it can be bought?
I believe TWE has them for £310.