Brand: Glen Scotia (Old Version bottled between 2005-2012)
Type: Single Malt Whisky
Age: 12 Years
Whisky Review # 568
Whisky Review # 568
Colour: Dark Gold with a shade of Orange (Artificially Coloured)
Nose: Mostly Sweet but with a light Bitter touch for balance. Glen Scotia usually matures their Whisky in Ex-Bourbon casks but the Dried Fruit and Nuts Aromas that I find suggest some Sherry influence. Remarkable. I also detect Toasted Barley, lightly Buttered Toast, Caramel, Marzipan, Toffee, light Vanilla, light Heather Honey, Straw, Dusty Shelves, Apple, Pear, Citrus, Pepper, Ginger, Dried Herbs, Cinnamon and Bitter Chocolate. In the background a little Earthy Peat, Soft Leather and Smoke from a distant fire. Hints of Diesel and Raw Meat. Some Mineral tones as well. The Alcohol is not completely integrated. This is certainly not an everyday modern Middle of the Road Whisky. It is a bit of a mixed bag but there's some authentic raw quality to it.
Palate: Bitter Sweet, slightly Sour, Woody, Spicy and Herbal. The Dirty Earth and Factory Smoke are a bit clearer now. The Alcohol is certainly noticeable as well. I find Toasted Malted Cereals, Caramel, Candle Wax, Straw, Dried Fruit (Raisins), Salted Almonds, light Heather-Honey, Vanilla, Apple, Butterscotch, Citrus Peel, Ginger, Pepper, Cardamom, Dried Herbs, Tobacco, Aniseed and a hint of Dark Chocolate. An ABV of 43-46% would have greatly enhanced this Glen Scotia.
Finish: Quite Long, Bitter-Sweet, Salty, Herbal, Spicy, slightly Sour and Dry in the end. A light Alcohol bite as well. I also find Wet Earth, Soft Smoke, Diesel, Charred Oak, Caramel, Heather, Straw, Nut Shells, Gin, Citrus Peel, Licorice, Pepper, Ginger, Cardamom and a hint of Dark Chocolate.
I added a bit of Water and on the Nose you will get some extra Herbs, Spices and Citrus. A hint of Caramelised Bananas as well. Palate and Finish become too Thin. Better enjoy this Glen Scotia neat.
Nose: 21.5 - Taste: 21 - Finish: 21 - Overall: 21
General Remarks: The Glen Scotia Distillery was founded in 1832 and is located in Campbeltown on the Kintyre peninsular. It's one of the three surviving distilleries in Campbeltown along with Springbank and Glengyle. The current owner is a Glasgow based Blending House called Loch Lomond Distillery. The 12 years I'm reviewing today was launched in 2005. In 2012, a new set of core Expressions was released (10, 12, 16, 18 and 21 Years), all with an ABV of 46%. Finally, a new range was launched in 2015. It consists of the 15 Years and two NAS Expressions, the Double Cask and the Victoriana. The Old 12 Years is still around at places and today, the average price should be somewhere around 45 US Dollars.
Drinking Experience Neat: Quite interesting and certainly not Mainstream!
Conclusion: If you like Mainstream Modern Single Malt, I don't think you will appreciate this Glen Scotia. If you're looking for something more adventurous with an excellent Price/Quality ratio, this Glen Scotia 12 Years might be an interesting alternative. It has its flaws though. The Alcohol bite is noticeable despite the low ABV. And it lacks a certain balance. But on the other hand there is a Raw, Authentic feel to this Glen Scotia that you won't find anymore in the standard Distillery offerings of today. Enjoy it while it's still there!