Glen Grant 10 Year Old

Spirit Name:
Glen Grant 10 Year Old
Score:
87/100
2, medal, silver icon

ABV:
40%
Region:
Speyside, Scotland
Body:
Medium
Intensity:
Medium (soft, smooth and crisp)
Texture:
Medium
Balance:
Heavenly
Best served:
Neat
 
Theme(s):
The Glen Grant 10 Year Old has a youthful distillate driven energy that swirls in the glass releasing ripe orchard fruits and granular flecks of barley as the oak settles the storm with a moderating wave of its wand and a luscious wave of vanilla and cream liqueur, SHAZAM! In my opinion this whisky is among the very best ex-bourbon cask whiskies, a near perfect example why Scotch is still King. Slainte!   
 
Tasting notes:
I blind tasted this whisky alongside other ex-bourbon cask whiskies, including the much more expensive Sullivan’s Cove American Oak expressions as my benchmark. It pains me to say it as an Australian, but the Glen Grant 10 Year Old had a fruit rich complexity and overall energetic elegance and creaminess that the Sullivan’s Cove simply lacked.
 
Scotch whisky is still King. Apart from being exceptional quality, most Scotch whisky is also quite affordable and this Glen Grant is just one example! The point I am making here is that many Scotch whisky expressions strike the balance between quality and value, and it is an absolute delight to taste a jaw-droppingly good whisky and then realise it only costs about $50. 
 
Nose: The whisky simply beams out of the glass energetically, as an exceptionally crafted distillate radiates sweet ripe orchard fruits that are balanced by the luscious vanilla and chocolate rich oak. Glazed cherries and notes of barley sparkle on that thin bed of oak as the ripe orchard fruits develop into candied peaches as well as macadamia nuts and dried cranberries coated with white chocolate. 
 
The barley on the nose is delightful, a great example of distilling at its finest and a maturation period that has not drowned out the distillate. 
 
Taste: Delightfully balanced, an initial bitter wave of cocoa swirls on the palate with the energetic barley rich malt. The silky smooth whirlwind soon settles and is balanced by lusciously creamy vanilla and vivacious orchard fruit notes, and a beautifully baked apricot crumble offering tart fruit alongside sweet and the crisp bite of the crumble topping. There is a Baileys note chiming in with tinned peaches, adding to the distillate driven charm.

Finish: Just as it begins to recede a wave of flavour returns to the palate, illuminating it with a medium-dry oak presence and the bitterness of walnut husks as the bite of an under-ripe yellow plum adds tart fruitiness that lingers with a sour note against the sweetness.
 
Likes:
This whisky may not have some of the oak driven complexity of some older whiskies, but the oak gods have smiled upon Glen Grant with this batch because this whisky is a superb 10 year old and most of the ripples have been smoothed out.
 
This Glen Grant is possibly the best value single malt whisky on the Australian market, and I struggle to see how any other ex-bourbon matured whisky in the 40% ABV range can compete with it at its price.    
 
Dislikes/Warning:
This is beautifully smooth whisky, though be warned that it will not crackle on the palate like fireworks bottled at 40%. This is such a shame, because this whisky is sheer magic at every turn. Just imagine that magic amplified, even just a little. Its alcohol level means that the magic is dulled somewhat. 
Price:
$56 (Aus), ₤25 (UK), $33-$50 (USA)
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