Review: The Glenrothes Select Reserve

Review: The Glenrothes Select Reserve

the-glenrothes-select-reserveIn its distinctive hand-grenade bottle (with cardboard shell), a bottle of Glenrothes comes across like a liquid hand grenade.

The Glenrothes Select Reserve is the entry-level variation on this whisky, an 80-proof concoction from Speyside with no age statement, a single malt vatted from Glenrothes whiskys of a variety of ages. (Since it’s all malted barley and all from Glenrothes, it’s still a single malt, not a blended/vatted malt.)

The color is medium gold, tinged with green. The nose is redolent of menthol and herbs,
rosemary and thyme, while the body hits you with a hefty dose of orange citrus. I get a taste of briny seaweed in the finish, which isn’t particularly long but offers a surprising amount of heat for an 80-proof Scotch.

Somewhat out of balance, the flavor profile of Select Reserve is a bit all over the map, a kind of very early expression that cries for more time in the barrel to develop more sweetness and vanilla character.

80 proof.

B / $36

The Glenrothes Select Reserve




Christopher Null is the founder and editor in chief of Drinkhacker. A veteran writer and journalist, he also operates Null Media, a bespoke content creation company.


  1. j- bird on August 21, 2009 at 7:46 pm

    I came upon of 1979 vintage (sample room) with signatures unopened single malt , what might the value of this bottle of Christmas Joy be valued at ?

  2. Kurt W on August 27, 2010 at 7:44 pm

    I found this review to be right on the money. Great job on catching the relatively short finish, and the chaotic flavour profile – it does need more aging to “round out” the edges and make it more recognizable as a glenrothes.

  3. jumpin_j on February 3, 2011 at 7:26 pm

    I disagree with the review. The nose has more of a light caramel and honey. The taste is more buttery and still retains a slight citrus finish. It’s not smokey or medicinal making it very easy to drink, and at under $40 for a single malt, it’s a great deal. One of my favorites.

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