Strange title I know but you’ll find out why soon enough.
I’ve got a soft spot for Glenkinchie. In fact I’ve got a soft spot for lowland distilleries really. I’m not sure why, possibly down to their rarity, their dwarfed in numbers by most of the other regions, and their lighter sweeter style is something I really enjoy.
But Glenkinchie was the first distillery I ever visited, quite a few years back now. Due to its proximity to Edinburgh (around a 40 minute drive from the capital) its often referred to as the ‘Edinburgh Malt’. They run their own private bus from the city if you book a tour, which is exactly what we did. I was fascinated by the distillery, learning about all its workings and seeing the mash tuns and the stills actually distilling was amazing. I’m guessing it was probably because Glenkinchie was the first place I saw the magic of distilling occuring is one reason why I like it.
The distillery is part of the Diageo supergroup of alcohol brands which include Guinness, Johnnie Walker, Smirnoff Vodka, Captain Morgan’s Rum, Gordon’s Gin; and several distilleries including Dalwinnie, Talisker, Oban and Lagavulin to name but a few.
In the late 1980’s Diageo decided it wanted to market it’s single malts as a flavour profile of Scotland so in 1988 they came up with the ‘Classic Malts of Scotland’ range, you may well have seen one of these plinths adorning your your local pubs bar shelf. These were Dalwinnie 15 to represent the Highlands, Cragganmore 12 to represent Speyside, Lagavulin 16 for Islay, Oban 14 for Western Highland, Talisker 10 for Skye and finally Glenkinchie 10 for Lowland.
I had tried all of these except for the Glenkinchie 10. And that’s because in 2007, Diageo stopped making it and replaced it with the Glenkinchie 12. A lovely whisky, but I wanted to get my hands on all the original members of the band. The Martyn Ware of the Human League line up that is the Classic Malts range before he was replaced by the Susan Ann Sulley that is the Glenkinchie 12; if you will. (I admit that analogy is tad long-winded, but what can I say, I like my synth pop).
So to do this I had to enter the world of Online Scotch Whisky Auctions to find this now defunct bottle. The good thing with it being a Diageo product was that it should still be relatively accessible. And it was. After paying fees and postage it worked out I’d paid about £35 for my bottle. Not bad considering it costs around the same for the new 12 year old edition.
I’ve been nursing this bottle for a good few weeks, it tastes brighter and a bit richer than the 12 year old. I hadn’t taken any notes about it as I was waiting to savour the last couple of drams and write the review at the same time. Alas, disaster struck only the other day. upon uncorking the bottle every whisky drinkers nightmare had befallen me. A broken cork. I tried my best to remove the rest of the deceased cork from the bottle neck without it dropping into my precious last drops of Glenkinchie 10, but I’m sorry to say I failed. Cue me frantically pouring the bottle out through a strainer into a jug to remove any cork particles. I did the best I could, but I don’t think its been enough.
So here we are now. With my last dram of slightly corky Glenkinchie 10, so with all the professionalism I can muster (as an amatuer enthusiast I’m not sure how that works) I shall soldier on through and try to remember what it tasted like before my corks demise, and use whats left to jog my memory. Wish me luck.
On the nose you get oatcakes and porridge with a bit of sugar on top. Bit of starchiness on first contact and black pepper too for sure, black peppercorns. Citrus juice on the palate as well like lime or maybe even a bit of grapefruit and then slowly finishes with a bit of sweet lemon sherbet at the end. Not bad at all. Minus the cork debris.
For Drinkers. For Thinkers. For Fun.
Bottle was purchased at http://www.scotchwhiskyauctions.com for £25 before costs
All views are my own