Glen Elgin 1995 Anam Na H-Alba Review

“Too Hot Ta Trot”

Country: Scotland
Region: Speyside
Brand: Glen Elgin 1995 (Anam Na H-Alba - The Soul of Scotland Series)
Type: Single Malt Whisky
Age: 17 Years
ABV: 58.1 %
Sample provided by Thomas from Germany. Many Thanks!

Colour: Golden Grain

Nose: The Alcohol is quite strong so it is really necessary to give this Glen Elgin enough time in the glass to open up. The Nose is Sweet and Floral with some Spicy undertones. I find Heather Honey, Citrus, Bourbon, light Vanilla, Toffee, Cereals, Butter Kekse, slightly Sour Green Apples, Canned Pineapple, Charred Oak, Old Book Shelves, Cinnamon, Ginger, Pepper and Cardamom. The Oak is quite present and so is the Alcohol. On the Nose this Glen Elgin only reluctantly shows its personality.

Palate: Very strong Delivery thanks to the high ABV. It's too strong in fact and quite Hot. On the Palate I find this Glen Elgin to be Bitter-Sweet, Woody, Waxy and quite Spicy with Charred Oak, Heather Honey, Malt, Hay, Orange Peel, Grapefruit Juice, Mandarin, Tropical Fruit Mix, Toffee, Milk Chocolate, Cinnamon, Menthol, Pepper, Cardamom, Bourbon and some Cocoa Powder.    

Finish: Quite Long, Woody, Bitter-Sweet and quite Dry in the end with Charred Oak, Grapefruit, Mandarin, Brown Sugar, Bourbon, Toffee, Pepper, Cinnamon, Menthol and a sprinkle of Salt. 

I added a little Water and on the Nose the Alcohol calms down of course.  The Barley, Vanilla and slightly Sour Apples become quite dominant. On the Palate the Citrus and Spices take over but the Finish gets a little Weaker. You can certainly add some Water but despite the high ABV its added value is limited.

Rating: 82

Nose: 21 - Taste: 20.5 - Finish: 20 - Overall: 20.5

Glen Elgin Distillery on a Winter's Day

General Remarks: This Glen Elgin 17 Years Single Cask Whisky was distilled on the 7th of November 1995 and was bottled at Cask Strength on the 26th of November 2012 by Indie Whisky bottler Anam Na H-Alba from the town of Oberhausen in Germany. It matured in an Ex-Bourbon Hogshead with Cask # 1663. This Glen Elgin is not Chill-Filtered and naturally coloured. The Bottles were sold at around US$ 75 a piece, relatively cheap for a Single Malt of this age (August 2015). It might be hard to find though! At Anam Na H-Alba it has been sold out for quite a while in the meantime!

The Glen Elgin distillery is located 4 miles south of Elgin in the village of Fogwatt close to the A 941. It was founded in 1898 by James Carle and William Simpson. It had its ups and downs but was finally bought by DCL in 1930. Today it's part of the Diageo Group and became one of their Classic Malts range in 2005. The 12 years is the Standard bottling but most of Glen Elgin's production is used in Blends like White Horse and Bell's. 

Drinking Experience Neat: Good

Conclusion: This is my first Glen Elgin. Therefore I have never tasted the young Spirit. The fact that most of it is used for simple Blends like White Horse and Bell's might indicate that it doesn't have a very strong own personality. That would explain the fact that after 17 Years of Ex-Bourbon Cask the Wood really came to dominate the Spirit. That might appeal to people who appreciate Old and Woody Bourbons but I found it a rather overwhelming experience. Not bad mind you but I felt like Forrest Gump or Woody Allen when I tasted this Glen Elgin. If you like this Aroma and Flavour Profile however, you might want to give it a try if you can find it as it's very reasonably priced for a Single Malt of this age.  

Jan van den Ende                                                                  August 13, 2015

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