Sunday, May 4, 2008

Have just tried ... Glen Scotia 12 years old

Glen Scotia (pronounced glen sco-sha) is one of Scotland's smallest distilleries with a capacity of only 750,000 litres a year. It is one of only three remaining distilleries in the region of Campbeltown, the other two being Springbank and Glengyle (which only opened in 2004). Glen Scotia can be found on the main street of Campbeltown. The Campbeltown region once had many more distilleries and was a major force in whisky production. However, it was hit harder than the other regions during difficult times possibly due to the remoteness of it's location. Glen Scotia is little known and to a certain degree lives in the shadow of it's bigger and more famous neighbour, Springbank. They release only two regular bottlings, this 12 years old and a rarer 17 years old.

The colour is quite dark and reminds me of caramel. The nose is quite smoky and peaty (like wet earth) with some interesting buttery sweetness and spicy, peppery notes coming through. This is also pretty smoky on the palate and that sweetness (a cross between butterscotch and honey) is also there. There are also dried fruit (raisins), something tart and fruity (like stewed cooking apples) and some raw spirit burning at the end. The finish is quite long, smoky and sweet with the raw spirit there plus something vegetal which had an element of gin about it (herbal botanicals and juniper). This is an interesting whisky that combines a decent amount of smokiness with sweetness. It would be a good introduction to smoky whisky for people that hadn't tried them before or thought that they wouldn't like the flavour. The only thing that spoilt it for me was the raw spirit that was present but overall I liked it. It is also very reasonably priced at just over £20, which is good for something that is 12 years old.

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