...where distraction is the main attraction.

Friday, February 15, 2019

Glenfiddich Special Reserve, bottled 1990ish @ 43%abv!

We have reached the 43%abv era of Glenfiddich Special Reserve!

*trumpets trumpet*

*sun shines*

*dog licks his balls*

But does it matter? Will that little bit of extra alcohol and less water result in more flavor and better texture? I hope so.

Today's Glenfiddich Special Reserve is from the early-er '90s. It's a 50mL, bottled for the USA. Its label nearly identical to the that of the 750mL reviewed on Wednesday, except for one factor:

There's that extra 3 points of poison. And now there's a listing of "(86 Proof)". As of 1990, liquor bottles were required to list alcohol content in %. Some companies listed both proof and abv for the first year or two in the transition. Others possibly started doing so before 1990.

In 1989, the Surgeon General's warning became an added requirement. This mini's got it:

So I lined this whisky up with Wednesday's Glenfiddich and the 2017 bottling. It was the first time in these tastings that I had a slightly higher than moderate expectations.

Owner: William Grant & Sons
Region: Speyside (Dufftown)
Age: no age statement
Maturation: ???
Bottle Code: LD....and then a string of smudged, vanishing numbers
Alcohol by Volume: 43%

Its color is actually darker than the other early 1990s bottling. There's yeast, dough, honey, white bread, salt and burlap at the core of the whisky's nose. Mint and strawberry candies at the edges. Small highlights of apples and smoked meat appear occasionally. The palate is vanilla cardboard and sugar. Tangy limes and a hint of cigars in the far back. Gradually the limes and vanilla push forward. It takes an hour before the cardboard flavor dissipates. The lightly sweet finish has limes, vanilla and cardboard.

The nose is full of promise. The palate is full of disappointment. Okay, that's polite. The palate is crap. The 50mL bottle had an excellent fill level, so it's not an oxidation issue. It's just a very flat batch, possibly assembled from used-up casks. It even underperformed the 2017 bottling. Having an extra 3 points of alcohol doesn't help if the whisky is flawed.

Next week, we go back to the '80s and early '70s....

Availability - one can find these minis at auctions
Pricing - ???, I think I paid less than $10 for it
Rating - 74 (only the nose keeps this out of the 60s)

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