I began this week of reviews of Speyside whiskies on Monday with a Glenburgie distilled in 1997 and bottled in 2012. On Wednesday I jumped back in time to review a Mannochmore distilled in 1978 and bottled in 1998. Let’s close the week with a Glen Grant distilled just a few years before the Glenburgie and only bottled in 2019.
This was bottled by Signatory for the Nectar in Belgium and, like the other two whiskies this week, it’s from a bourbon cask, in this case a bourbon barrel (Signatory have always been more forthcoming with cask information than Scott’s Selection, the bottlers of Wednesday’s Mannochmore, ever were). I’ve liked a lot of the bourbon cask Glen Grants I’ve had, including the official Glen Grant 18, which I reviewed earlier this year. Well, I don’t know if that’s listed specifically as being from bourbon casks but that seemed very obviously to be the case. And I did very much like the last one I reviewed that was unambiguously from a bourbon barrel—this 22 yo, 1992 from Single Malts of Scotland. So the odds are good. But the proof is in the glass. Let’s get to it.
Glen Grant 24, 1995 (49.9%; Signatory for the Nectar; bourbon barrel 88191; from a bottle split)
Nose: A big wave of fruit (lemon, pineapple, apple) and toasted oak. The fruit expands with each sniff, getting sweeter and a bit muskier. A rye note from the oak expands as it sits. Maltier with time and the oak spice backs off. With water the oak recedes further and the fruit dominates—the lemon turns to citronella and there’s some makrut lime as well along with a custardy note.
Palate: Comes in tart here (lemon) with the oak right behind. A good drinking strength and a nice (non-tannic) bite from the oak; rich texture. On the second sip the fruit is richer still (the pineapple emerges now) and there’s some pepper to go with it. As it sits there’s a bit of a metallic note that pops out. Okay, let’s add water. Water knocks the metallic note back and it’s all about the fruit and malt now—less acidic and richer in general than on the nose. More pineapple than lemon here.
Finish: Long. The fruit gets muskier as it goes and then the oak gets the last word. A touch of salt too at the end. As on the nose and palate with water
Comments: This started out very strong on the nose but then faded a bit on the palate, especially as it sat. A touch too much oak contact; I guess this would have been truly great coming out of a hogshead than the smaller barrel. It does perk up again with water but not enough to head to 90 points as my first couple of sniffs had indicated it might.
Rating: 88 points.