Showing posts with label Glenfarclas 40. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Glenfarclas 40. Show all posts

Glenfarclas 40 Years Review

“Wooden Heart” 

Whisky Review # 766

Country: Scotland
Region: Speyside
Brand: Glenfarclas
Type: Single Malt Whisky
Age: 40 Years
Alcohol By Volume (ABV): 46%
Maturation: A mix of First-Fill and Refill Ex-Sherry Casks - Bottled: July 2011
Chill Filtration: No
Price Range: US$ 900-1100 (August 2018) - Limited Edition
Buying Advice: ­čśő Woody and Tannic but really Delicious!


Dark Amber 


Deep and Complex. Amazingly Fresh for a 40 Years Old. Good Mix of First-Fill & Refill Sherry casks. Sweet with lots of Oak, Dried Fruits and Nuts. A few Sour notes for balance. I don't find any relevant Sulphur. The Alcohol is perfectly integrated. Very nice nose! Be sure to give it enough time in the glass before Nosing.

Main Aromas:

Buttered Toast, Butter Kekse (German Butter Biscuits), Vanilla, Caramel, English Marmalade, Dried Fruit like Raisins, Plums and Apricot, Cassis Liqueur, Dark Chocolate and Cocoa Powder, Quality Oak, Almonds, Apple, Cigar Box, Polished Leather Upholstery, Cinnamon and Pepper.

Supportive Aroma Accents:

Sweet Barley, Butterscotch, Dusty Track, Pine Resin, Nectarine, Fresh and Dried Herbs, Roasted Coffee Beans, Marzipan, Pipe Tobacco, Ginger, Cloves and Mint.


Wood and Wood Spices are quite strong but thanks to the quality of the casks I don't mind it this time. On the Palate the Glenfarclas presents a mix of Bitter, Sweet, Sour, Spicy, Bourbon and Tannic notes. Quite Dry. Good stuff!

Main Flavours:

Vanilla, Rich Toffee, Demerara Sugar, Dried Fruit like Raisins, Sultanas, Apricots and Plums, Walnuts, Apple, Dark Chocolate and Cocoa Powder, Fresh Polished Leather Upholstery, Orange Marmalade, Strong Espresso, Cigar Box, Cinnamon, Pepper and Ginger.

Supportive Flavour Accents:

Sweet Barley, Caramel, Dusty Track, Mint, Walnuts, Dark Berries, Pipe Tobacco, Cloves and Nutmeg.


Middle-Long, Bitter-Sweet, Dry and Tannic. Lots of Wood but it's not really over the top. There is enough Fruity Sweetness to counterbalance the Wood and Spices. I find Toasted Barley, Vanilla, Rich Toffee, Dried Fruit like Raisins, Plums and Apples, Dark Chocolate and Cocoa Powder, Strong Espresso, Fresh Polished Leather Upholstery, Orange Marmalade, Cigar Box, Pepper, Nutmeg, Ginger, Menthol, light Licorice, Walnuts, Pine Resin and Marzipan. The Finish invites you to have another sip at once!

Drinking Advice:

I added a few drops of Water and the Malt relaxes. Wood and Wood Spices are less aggressive this way. The general Aroma/Flavour profile does not change a whole lot. This is really a matter of personal preference. I prefer it neat to get the full intensity of this Glenfarclas.

Rating: 89

Nose: 22.5 - Taste: 22 - Finish: 22 - Overall: 22.5 

Drinking Experience:

Very good.


The distillery was founded in 1836 by Robert Hay in Ballindalloch (Banffshire). It was bought by the Grant family in 1865 and it remains in their possession until today. The core range consists of the 8, 10, 12 , 15, 21 and 25 years, the 105 CS and the NAS Heritage. The Glenfarclas Malt is also used in Blends like the Isle of Skye. Glenfarclas produces around 2 million liters per year. The distillery only uses Ex-Sherry casks to mature the Spirit.

Glenfarclas operates 3 pair of directly fired stills. They are the largest stills on Speyside. The Lyne arms mostly point downwards. The stills produce a full, nutty, lightly peated and sherried Spirit. The water is drawn from the Green Burns.

The 40 Years was launched during the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival in 2010. The miniature I'm using today was bottled on July 7, 2011. Despite the steep price increase in the last years, the Glenfarclas 40 Years is still relatively inexpensive when compared to other Single Malts of this age.

I'm usually not a big fan of Single Malts with a very strong Wood Flavour. The cask should always serve the Spirit and not the other way around. But I would like to make an exception for this batch of the Glenfarclas 40 years bottled in 2011. The quality of the Wood is such that I really enjoyed the experience. Very consistent from Nose to Finish. What a pity I only had a miniature bottle! I just wanted to keep on sipping!

Jan van den Ende                                                                  August 24, 2018