Glenlossie 35, 1975 (The Whisky Agency)

I started the month with a review of the then oldest Glenlossie I’d ever had—a 29 yo from a bourbon cask. Here now to close the month is a review of what is now the oldest Glenlossie I’ve ever had—a 35 yo, also from a bourbon cask. This was bottled by the Whisky Agency for Shinanoya in Tokyo. I got a sample of it from my friend Nick in Minneapolis a few years ago and completely forgot about it before finding it last month during my ongoing cull of the vast hoard of samples I’d accumulated over the years. I’ve tasted it before at one of our friend Rich’s whisky gatherings up in the Ciites. I remember liking it a lot but those sessions usually involve a fair number of over-the-top whiskies and others sometimes get a little lost in the shuffle. And so I’m pleased to be able to spend a little bit more time with this one. Let’s see what I make of it now.

Glenlossie 35, 1975 (51.3%; The Whisky Agency for Shinanoya, Tokyo; bourbon hogshead; from a sample from a friend)

Nose: Lemon and toasted oak off the top, joined soon by malt, melon and some pastry crust. Just lovely. With each sniff the muskier fruit is more expressive—the melon now joined by some pineapple and some tart mango; the toasted oak still providing a nice frame for the fruit. With a few drops of water the oak backs off, the fruit expands dramatically—peach is the top note now—and there’s a fair bit of cream.

Palate: Comes in a little bit thin but as I swallow it expands with the malt and the oak leading the way, followed by the fruit. Richer with each sip and there’s more citrus now. Water adds textural depth here as well and brings out more of the fruit,

Finish: Medium-long. The interplay of fruit and oak continues as it fades. Longer with water and more of the fruit custard.

Comments: This is a very fine whisky. The nose, in particular, is excellent both without and with water. The palate is not quite at that level—maybe a consequence of the bottle being past the halfway mark when I drew the sample—and that slight lack of depth of flavour there keeps it out of the next tier.

Rating: 89 points.

Thanks to Nick S. for the sample!

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