Today's advent calendar dram is from one of only two distilleries I've spent my entire whisky drinking career avoiding. Known as "Campbeltown's other distillery" Glen Scotia has never had the best reputation in whisky circles. It was a sad little neglected distillery producing whisky with a very strange off note.
Since early 2014, however, under the ownership of Exponent Private Equity Glen Scotia has been spoiled with investment: new wash backs, new spirit safe, new roofs, still upgrades, and a visitor center. In 2015, a new retail line was launched that includes today's dram. Double Cask is a vatting of bourbon casks that were finished in Pedro Ximenez sherry for three to four months and bottled at 46% alc. (huzzah!). Let's see if fortunes are changing at Campbeltown's other distillery.
Behind window #7: Glen Scotia Double Cask, 46% alc., £31/$46
N: Ginger sponge cake with golden syrup, Connecticut shade-grown cigar wrappers (with a good whiff of Guy Fawkes bonfires), maybe a little custard around the edges
P: Decent texture, pleasantly spicy (ginger and a little cinnamon) with more custard notes
F: Moderate length but most surprisingly after the nose and palate is that it's strangely devoid of spice, there are some darker fruit notes coming in though
In conclusion: While the nose is terrific and the palate is good the finish is a real letdown. However, in the world of Glen Scotia releases this is an A+. After sampling this NAS offering I'm very interested in exploring the new line (and I didn't think I'd write that as recently as pulling this sample from the advent calendar!). I'm really pleased that this was included in this year's calendar and I wonder how many other whisky lovers grumbled to themselves when they saw the name on the label. Well played so far, Exponent Private Equity.
Sincere thanks to Master of Malt's Drinks by the Dram for the sample.