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Monday, September 12, 2022

Glen Moray 25 year old 1994 SMWS 35.275

How about some Glenz? I'm going to review nine Glens over the next three weeks, with only one of them being a Sexy Glen (no, not Glenn Frey; note his two Ns). Each week will have the usual three reviews, the oldest of the trio first, the youngest last.

Though I've reviewed only three Glen Moray single malts on the blog so far, I tend to like the whisky, especially the now retired official 10yo Chardonnay Cask. This 25 year old indie may be the oldest Glen Moray I've had, which is fun, but it appears to have spent its entire life in a first-fill toasted hogshead, which is......interesting.

Distillery: Glen Moray
Owner: La Martiniquaise
Region: Speyside (Elgin)
Independent Bottler: Scotch Malt Whisky Society
Age: 25 years (24 Nov 1994 - 2020)
Maturation: first-fill toasted hogshead
Cask#: 35.275
Outturn: 180 bottles
Alcohol by Volume: 59.6%
(from a bottle split)


Dessert whisky. Cinnamon toffee pudding, crème brûlée, candy corn and tobacco leaf arrive first in the nose. Touches of mint leaf, ginger powder, soil and dunnage provide depth. The palate is a bit warm and spicy, definitely a winter pour, but not brutal, highlighted by gently sweet citrus, toasted cashews, a bit of MGP rye whisky and cinnamon raisin bread. That cinnamon raisin bread leads the finish, with subtler notes of lemons, cloves and toasted cashews.

DILUTED to ~50%abv, or ~1 tsp of water per 30mL whisky

The neat nose's characteristics have intensified. The spices are quite lovely, and it's rich like an even older malt at times. Mango and peach sneak in. Bright citrus moves to the front of the palate, spices (cinnamon, clove, ginger powder) to the middle. A little more mint. The fruit's tartness keeps the sweetness in check. It finishes with limes, ground cloves, dried mint and a hint of ginger.


Um, this is pretty darned good. If this is how whisky ages in a toasted hoggie, then I wish the industry would lean into The Toast, rather than virgin char bombs. Even though this cask was toasted, I do think this would appeal to American whisky fans, specifically rye geeks. Those spices! Does the Glen Moray spirit have any influence here? I don't know. But it took well to its vessel.

Keep in mind, this isn't Neu Whisky (though maybe Neu! Whisky?) because many wine / fortified wine casks are toasted rather than charred. Just picture those casks with the wine removed. To me, it worked very well this time.

Availability - Sold out
Pricing - was around $300 upon release
Rating - 89