GlenDronach’s Grandeur releases keep hitting the market, with Batch 11 one of the oldest it’s ever dropped. The 28 year old bottling is, like Batch 10, drawn from a small number of Pedro Ximénez and Oloroso sherry casks in which the whisky has been fully matured, not finished.
There’s quite a similarity between this release and the prior bottling, and my tasting notes bear a strong resemblance to that release. The old, well-oxidized sherry character is fully on display here, and my guess is there’s more PX in this release than there is Oloroso. The nose is intense: toasted nuts, coffee beans, leather, and tea left overnight to concentrate at the bottom of a cup. On the palate, I expected a surprising sweetness kicks things off, evoking coffee with sugar, brandied cherries, and a light touch of toasted coconut. Nutty, leathery, and intense on the finish. The overall complexion is akin to one of those coffee-laced dessert drinks that are invariably hard to put down — I know I had trouble doing so. The finish is sharp with sherry notes and flamed citrus peel elements that grow stronger the longer the whisky spends in the glass. All told I think the dial might be pushed a bit too far toward PX this time around, but it’s hard to complain to vigorously about a whisky this exuberant and expressive.
A- / $800