Glenmorangie Whisky Weekend
The Glenmorangie Whisky Weekend at Glenmorangie House started with a sensory experience and whisky tasting. There are 143 flavours in The Original and we were given 11 to smell. This was done blindfolded and was more difficult than I had imagined. After that we had 4 drinks to try to identify and 2 flavour profiles to work out. Aidan who works at the distillery was with us the entire weekend which offered a unique perspective for us.
- The Original is matured in first and second fill American white oak casks for 10 years and 3 days. This 10-year-old expression is made from clean barley and is 40% ABV. On the nose it is citrus, peaches and vanilla. The vanilla comes through on the palate moving on to a floral note and ending with orange and peach.
- The Tùsail is part of the private edition and uses English malted barley. This is non chill-filtered and 46% ABV. On the nose there is malt, biscuits and nut toffee. This toffee follows onto the palate where you can taste ginger, cinnamon, and dates.
- The Necta D’Or 12-year-old, gift of the gods is extra matured in hand selected wine barriques from Sauterne for 2 years. It is 43% ABV and the bottle we buy to take back with us to England. There is lime, orange and sultanas from the barrels on the nose. The palate is toasted almonds, lemon and honey. The finish is long and with notes of white chocolate, ginger and nutmeg.
- The Duthac is available only in Duty Free and forms part of the Legends of Tain collection. It is cask matured in Pedro Ximénez and virgin American white oak from the Ozarks. This 43% ABV starts off with an aroma of pear, toffee apple, and oak. Once the water is added and the serpent is released you will smell vanilla fudge and linseed oil. The taste is milk chocolate, leather, and clove, finishing off with vanilla, apricots and marzipan
The Great Glen of Tranquility
Situated in the microclimate of the Tain peninsula on the Dornoch Firth you will find Glenmorangie Distillery. It was established in 1843 and started off as a brewery. The water used for whisky making is piped in from the naturally filtered Tarlogie spring which is 2 miles away. Local Cadboll barley is used by the distillery and this is grown on 4 farms in the area, including Glenmorangie farm. 300 tonnes are delivered per week and this 2-year-old barley is roasted which results in the coffee smell common to Glenmorangie whisky. The estate covers 850 acres of land including the spring which we were meant to visit but could not go to due to the wet ground.
It is noteworthy that the malt mill is 70 years old and has a unique pagoda roof. The view from here is amazing. The icon for their single malt is a signet, taken from a local Pictish stone which is 1200 years old. The men who make the whisky at the distillery are known as the 24 Men of Tain. They craft the whisky and pass their knowledge down from generation to generation and all of them are related. There have been 9 distillery managers since the start and currently Dr. Bill is in charge of distillation. They use the original 12, 174 year old, copper stills which are the tallest in Scotland. The necks’ length is the same in proportion as a giraffe’s neck hence the use of the animal in their sales room and at the house.
- The recipe for the Finealta dates back to 1903 and means elegant. There are oranges, raisins and lime on the nose. The first taste is of mandarins, nutmeg and ginger followed by a sweetness akin to meringues and a floral note of violets. The finish is full of smoke.
- The 18 Years Old smells like Christmas and the taste is of honey and mat with a hint of smoke. After 15 years maturation in American white oak casks, 30% is transferred into Spanish Oloroso casks. After 3 years they are blended together, and you can get the nuttiness from the Oloroso on the finish.
- The Tarlogan is named for the spring and presents with butterscotch, vanilla and malt on the nose. I can taste the vanilla, pears. and orange straight away. Then the ginger comes in, followed by white chocolate and marzipan.
- The Lasanta smells of spices, honey and toffee. The initial taste is oranges, walnuts and butterscotch ending with chocolate.
- The Quinta Ruban is a 12-year-old single malt with dark mint chocolate, oranges and black pepper on the nose. This mint chocolate follows through on the palate with the addition of walnuts and Turkish delight. The dark chocolate mint lingers right to the end, with just a hint of orange remaining.
The key here is to not turn your tray around when taking photographs. I did so and of course my blind tasting results were not perfect. I will not spoil this for anyone reading my post who intends on going on the whisky weekend. What I will tell you is to pay attention, and expect the unexpected. There is a great prize for the winner.
Signet sonnet tasting
I absolutely loved this experience of listening to someone talk me through a tasting. We each had our own headset and so this blocked out all other sounds, heightening the tasting experience. Of all the tastings over the whisky weekend, this was the highlight.
- Signet was developed in 2009 and contains 30-year-old whisky. Using the best American white oak casks available, this is one whisky I could drink over and over again. Concentrating on the nose I get coffee, treacle and orange. The first taste is of beautiful spices followed by mint and citrus. With a dash of water the taste intensifies to include hazelnuts and chocolates with almond right at the end.
Glenmorangie Whisky Weekend
If you are looking to do a whisky weekend then Glenmorangie House is the perfect place to do so. You will stay in the home of the McLeod’s of Cadboll and be made to feel like part of a family. We experienced what felt like a great gathering of the Clans, with Scottish people from all over.
Contact them on +44 1862 871 671