I recently visited Glen Garioch, and while a full account of my visit will be written, together with my tasting notes for the ‘bottle your own’ casks available at the distillery, today I’d like to put out my review of the second chapter of the Renaissance project by Glen Garioch, which I tasted at the distillery. You’ll find my review of the first chapter here.
The distillery was offline from 1995 to 1997, and when the distillery came back into production, the peat (albeit at a relatively low level 5-10 ppm) was gone together with the floor maltings. With the fruit coming to the forefront of the new house style. And here’s where the Renaissance series come in with an interesting concept. The official PR states that Glen Garioch wants to show the evolution of the house style, thus “The hearty Highland character of Glen Garioch has been captured in an exciting quadrilogy, charting the journey of the malt’s current house style as it matures over four years. The result is an anthology of four exclusive editions – 15, 16, 17 and 18 year olds – entitled the Glen Garioch Renaissance Collection, of which each will be released annually.”
The first chapter was released in August 2014, and the second chapter appeared two years later, in September 2016. I hope the third chapter will appear next summer, keeping to the yearly release schedule.
The second chapter was matured in both bourbon and sherry casks, and is presented at cask strength of 51.4%.
Glen Garioch Renaissance Chapter 2 (51.4% ABV, NCF)
Appearance: Light bronze, slow legs peeling off a long lasting necklace.
Nose: Creamy sherry, orange blossom and clove. There’s a strong maltiness – the sort you smell in a warm mash tun, with cherries, red berries a hint of kiwi fruit and a honey sweetness, together with some dried apricots and a hint of vanilla. The empty glass holds strong notes of maltiness and orange blossom with vanilla.
Palate: Dry mouth feel with sweet spice, and the pepper strengthening as you hold it. Fresh cherry, dried fruit and honey on the front of the tongue.
Linger: Warm and peppery on the back of the tongue, a lot of cereal in the aftertaste with bitter notes not quite of citrus rind but maybe the residual oil you have on your hand after peeling a yellow grapefruit. The mouth remains dry, bitter and malty with a hint of espresso.
The maltiness really comes through in this dram, which is less dominant in Chaprer 1, yet they clearly are made from the same (spirit) cut 🙂
The Renaissance Chapter 2 is currently available at the distillery (£85), and will surely be making its way to stores soon enough, hopefully in time to find its way under many decorated trees.