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In our house growing up there was always a bottle of Glenfiddich Whisky in the house. I think the reason for this was my grandfather used to be the excise man at the distillery so as a family this had always been a malt that was in the house to be drunk not only because he got it at work but then in memory of his work and him. Whilst it isn't my favourite single malt it is one that I do go back to several times for a tipple as much for the trips down memory lane that the malt reminds me of than the taste.
Glenfiddich is based in Speyside in Scotland and the distillery takes it name from and means "Valley of the Deer". This explains the deer on the packaging.
The colour of this whisky is a lovely golden colour it is a light amber colour that even with the addition of a drop of water still holds its caramel tones well. It definitely seems to have taken on a reasonable amount of oak colouring from the maturation process.
The nose is said to be fruity with a hint of pear, I personally never can detect any pear in the nose. I do however get some citrus notes such as orange and a tart brambly apple scent. With the addition of water it also has a good degree of smokiness to the nose that I always think is typical of some of the Speyside malts. Despite these smoky notes it is surprisingly fresh as well and doesn't have a harsh alcohol scent to it. The nose of the malt lingers well and with each sip you can smell all the notes of the whisky with their depth well.
The taste and the palate initially starts with some sweet and fruity notes that I actually think reminds me of an alcoholic apple juice. As the malt is savoured it develops into a rich butterscotch that in some ways reminds me of butterscotch sweets. As the malt lingers the subtle oak flavours develops more alongside the sweet hints of malted barley. These are subtle and not as strong as some other malts I like such as the Aberlour 16 year old but this malt has only matured for 12 years so doesn't have the degree of length and depth of a more mature malt whisky. What this means I find is that though it does linger well and taste very smooth it isn't as complex or as deep as some of our other malts in the house. For this reason I would say this is a very light malt and one that can be drunk on a lunch time or even as an aperitif rather than it been a sole drink for sipping leisurely in front of the fire.
The malt is 40% proof and you do notice an alcohol kick to it especially without the addition of water but if you add some water it takes away some of the kick. That said even an vodka but instead more softer and smoother with no after burn.
Whilst I do like this malt and for me it has a lot of nostalgic memories I do prefer a more complex malt such as the 16 year old Aberlour malt or the Macallan oak finish. It is a lovely fruity and light malt. I think is a great malt if you prefer a whisky that isn't too heavy or smoky or woody. It has a lovely golden colour and a sweet butterscotch and fruity taste. It is widely available in most shops for around £25 a bottle.
I love a good single malt Scotch whisky. And the brand everyone seems to know is Glenfiddich. So, off I went to get some, and boy it tastes great.
First things first, it comes in a nice, green box with gold writing. Not that important I know, but it does give the impression of a premium product, which at £30 for a 70cl bottle, this is.
The bottle itself matches the shape of the box; a sort of rounded off triangle, and again the green and gold make it look and feel a bit posh. Again, not the most important thing to anyone who is drinking it, but it's a nice touch.
Next up, you open the bottle. A beautiful aroma awaits you; as the description says, you'll get a hint of vanilla; and to me that was the first thing that wafted it's way into my nostrils. However, unlike the description, I couldn't smell the hint of nuts, however I guess my sense of smell is damaged from smoking; glad I gave up! Anyway, I digress. The aroma is fantastic, and as it makes it's way up your nose, it begins to make your mouth water.
The next thing to do is to pour it into the glass. I would recommend doing it slowly, let that aroma hit you again, it really is addictively good.
Now take a sip. Wonderful isn't it? You can definitely taste the vanilla in it, and I noticed another flavour in there, which I imagine comes from the sherry and bourbon casks that it was stored in at the distillery.
Then, as you swallow it, feel the tingle in your chest; it's beautiful. Furthermore, if there's a drop left on your lips, that's going to give a pleasant tingle too. There's only one way to describe it; heavenly.
Yes, there are more expensive single malts, which may or may not taste as good as this. But for a relatively small cost, you can enjoy one of the finest single malts to come out of Scotland.
It's not often that the most popular of something in the world is amongst the best, but Glenfiddich is a rare exception.
With so many single malts on offer in most supermarkets you're spoilt for choice. Some are not for beginners and are aquired tastes, others are not really worthy of the title and would be best put in a blend. This though is a fine example of the high quality end of the market and at the same time it's a good choice to introduce someone to malts. Personally it's my yardstick, others have a lot to do to just come close on quality, flavour and smoothness. Yes there are a few better malts out there, but usually either at a higher price or much harder to find.
There is at least one single malt out there for everybody, and this one is probably high on most people's lists.
Appearance: Pale, slightly green tinge. Aroma (straight): Dryish, malty. Aroma (dilute): Flowery (elderflower?) and a hint of wood. Flavour: Malty with hint of nuts and vanilla. Dry finish.