Glenlivet Nadurra 16 Years Review

“A Speysider with a Punch”

Country: Scotland
Region: Speyside 
Brand: The Glenlivet Nadurra
Type: Single Malt Whisky
Age: 16 Years
ABV: 54.8 %

The entrance as seen from the Parking Lot!

Colour: Yellow Gold 

Nose: The Alcohol is quite strong so you have to work your way around it. Give this Single Malt enough time in the glass to open up. The Nadurra is Sweet, Creamy and Fruity with some Bourbon influences. I find Banana, Strawberry Cream, Vanilla, Charred Oak, Butterscotch, Dough, Straw, Malt, Orange, Peach, Nutmeg, Ginger, Cinnamon, Toasted Cereals, Floral tones and a hint of Milk Chocolate. The Nose is not extremely complicated but reasonably pleasant and balanced. I do believe that the ABV is a bit too high for this specific Whisky. I don't think I ever wrote that before!!

The Distillery and its Surroundings!

Palate: A combination of Fruit, Floral tones and Spices. Again, the Alcohol is quite present. Besides Bananas, Peach and Pear I find lots of Spices such as Pepper, Nutmeg and Aniseed. I also find Citrus Peel, Malt, Honey flavoured Cereals, Ginger, Dough and Brown Sugar.

Some of the Stills!

Finish: Middle-Long. Sweet at first but quite Dry and slightly Bitter-Sweet in the end. I find some Charred Oak, Nutmeg, Pepper, Ginger, Aniseed, Citrus Peel, Vanilla, Banana and Malt.

A Picture of the Photographer!

I added a bit of water and on the Nose the Alcohol retreats somewhat and that's a good thing in my opinion. It's easier now to appreciate the Fruit, Malt, Vanilla, Cereals and Spices. On the Palate however Spices and Licorice start to reign while the Finish becomes very Dry and Oaky. A couple of drops are okay but be careful!

Rating: 86

Nose: 22 - Taste: 21 - Finish: 21.5 - Overall: 21.5

A Familiar looking Bar Man!

General Remarks: George Smith built The Glenlivet Distillery in 1824. It moved to the current location, Minmore House near Ballindalloch in 1858 and produces around 10 million litres of Alcohol yearly. Current Owners are Chivas (Pernod Ricard). Glenlivet is the best selling Single Malt in the USA and the second best on a global scale. Most of the production is sold as Single Malt with most of the remainder going to the Chivas Regal – and Royal Salute Blends. Most distilleries closed various times during their history, especially during the Depression and in wartime. But Glenlivet only closed during World War II. Without any doubt, the Glenlivet has contributed a lot to the current popularity of Single Malt whiskies. 

The Glenlivet Nadurra (Gaelic for Natural) I'm tasting today was bottled at Cask Strength in March 2013 as part of Batch 0313W. The Nadurra isn't Chill-Filtered and matured in First Fill American Oak Casks. It costs around 70 US Dollars.

Drinking Experience Neat: Good

The Tasting of the 18 Years!

Conclusion: Certainly different from your average plain Glenlivet. The Nadurra shows character and there's a handicraft feel to it. I think I would have scored this even higher if not for the Alcohol. I really think the ABV is too high for the Nadurra. When you have a complex Single Malt, a high ABV usually manages to merge with the other flavours. But in this case the Alcohol has nowhere to hide. That said, the Nadurra is certainly an interesting Single Malt with a fair Price - Quality ratio. Give it a try when you stumble across this Glenlivet.

Some Data: Glenlivet means Glen of the Smooth Place. The Distillery is located in Ballindalloch (Banffshire). It's in the middle of nowhere but you can find it quite easily following the signs from either Aberlour or Dufftown. The Glenlivet  Distillery possesses 2 Still Rooms. In the old one you can find 4 Pairs of Stills, 8 Wooden Wash Backs and the old Mash Tun that's not being used anymore. In the new Still room that was completed in 2010, you will find 1 Briggs Mash Tun, 8 Wash Backs (Oregon Pine) and 3 Pairs of Stills. By the end of 2013 their maximum production capacity amounted to an impressive 10,5 million litres.

Old Warehouses in the Sun (A Miracle!)

The water for the distillery is sourced at Josie's Well. From Easter to October, the Distillery opens from Monday - Saturday from 9.30 to 16.00 hours and on Sunday from 12.00 to 16.00. The Standard Tour is free. The Ambassador's Tour that is organised every Friday morning costs 25 Pounds and needs to be booked in advance. The Visitor Centre and Shop are quite spacey and there's a restaurant section where light meals can be enjoyed.

This Picture Must Have Been Taken a Million Times!

We visited The Glenlivet on Saturday May 24, 2014. For once we saw a bit of the sun at the end of our visit.  We did the Standard Tour. It's short and for free but the guide was friendly and knowledgeable. A real pity that we weren't allowed to take any pictures inside. And in this case, this rule was applied in a very rigid way. At the end of the Tour we tasted the 18 Years.

Jan van den Ende                                                           October 1, 2014

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