GlenAllachie 12 years

The first thing that came to mind on seeing the new GlenAllachie logo was Pocahontas.

Or maybe that should be PocaHontas.  As, since Billy Walker bought the distillery just over a year ago, the distillery name has undergone the same capitalisation treatment à la GlenDronach and BenRiach.

The rebranding and hence redesign of the logo is, according to the website, in keeping with the Celtic runes and Pictish stones which surround the distillery. So nothing to do with Disney then.

Thankfully, I’m not overly influenced by packaging these days.

As Billy Walker only bought the distillery in October last year, it’s clear that this whisky is from the stock included in the purchase. As a distillery, it’s not one I have a great deal of experience of. Possibly due to the fact that, in the past, the vast majority of its spirit was matured for blending purposes by its previous owners, Chivas. It’s also not a whisky anyone has ever recommended to me; one that has dropped off the radar so to speak.

How the new owners will revive the distillery, implement changes in production and, subsequently, develop the brand is still unfolding. However, the first releases are out with the aforementioned stock from the previous owners.

The four expressions in the GlenAllachie Foundation Range – 10 years (Cask Strength), 12 years, 18 years and 25 years – range from £40 to £220. The 12 years retails around the £40 mark, is non chill filtered and contains whisky matured in PX, Oloroso and Virgin Oak casks:

GlenAllachie 12 years – 46% abv

Nose: initially very pleasant; hints of red apple becoming more toffee apple-esque after a while; honeycomb (as in Crunchie bars); a slight damp wood note lurking in the background; notes of new leather; after a while in the glass, more fruit notes open up with notes of tinned oranges and lime cordial.

Palate: a thin and slightly oily texture; dry and quite bitter; hazelnuts; hint of almonds; ripe bananas, dark chocolate into the finish.

Overall, the nose was promising but the palate didn’t quite live up to it. That’s not to say this is a bad whisky. It’s just that it’s not an outstanding one. However, at forty quid, you probably weren’t expecting it to be.


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