In these last warm days of summer, as the warmth of sun is slowly ripening fruits of nature and cool evening winds reminds us of the coming fall, I have slowly began to return to Scotch Whisky, after a summer break marked by excessive rum and gin drinking.
This time, I have taken a “trip” to the Scottish Highlands, and its largest and most popular distillery, Glenmorangie. Glenmorangie is well known to the world of whisky aficionados as having the tallest stills used to produce malt whiskey. At a height of 8 metres ( equal to the average height of a full grown, male giraffe ), only extra fine, purest alcohols make it to the other side, to eventually become Glenmorangie`s fine malt whisky. And that is only the beginning of their whisky making craft. Their journey continues with using different types of wood in which they finish their core expressions, but more on that once I get my hands on their other core expressions for a “comparative study”.
Their base, core expression is simply named The Original, aged for 10 years in American Oak Casks, which would probably mean ex-bourbon casks, an industry standard, with one exception; at Glenmorangie they use the same cask only twice, before (presumably) selling them of.
It is worth to note that the distillery owns a forest in the Ozark Mountains in Missouri, USA, which is leased to American whiskey producers such as Jack Daniels. After aging their whiskey and bourbons for four years, the barrels are shipped to Glenmorangie to age their malt whisky.
A win – win situation, right?
Now, after a nice beginning, let` s move to the tasting of Glenmorangie The Original.
The colour is pale gold, with the nose being very delicate and mellow. There is a bouquet of floral aromas, and very fruity, slightly citrusy. Vanilla and biscuits underneath, and something sweet and sour, lemon cheesecake, or lemon sorbet maybe. I was expecting a very light whisky, but on the palate it is actually very medium bodied, there is some weight to the sip. Strong vanilla and fruits are rounded up with some nuttiness. Somewhat grassy and woody. Finish is very short and sweet. Malty. There are some cereals and a bit of mint.
Well rounded, clean and crisp dram, very refreshing and easily drinkable, this is a must try for any whisky lover and a great introduction to single malt whiskies. Very approachable even for people who don’t usually drink spirits.
Although it is not really my type of whisky, I would rate The Original a clean 10/10. An everyday, go-to malt.
Just a side note: Because of the delicate aromas I would not recommend mixing it, except maybe in a Mizuwari, with a lemon and orange peel garnish. It becomes a lot sweeter when ice or cold water is added so it might be an ideal partner for what is left of the hot days.
Next up, the Flamingo will probably acquire a miniatures of the Glenmorangie Core range, so stay tuned for more reviews.