Review: Glengoyne 21 Years Old

We’ve covered the core lineup from Glengoyne, as well as the final chapter in their Legacy Series, but we have yet to dip our toe into the distillery’s rarer single malt offerings which include an age-stated lineup ranging from 21 years to a whopping 50 years old. While a sample of the 50 year is probably not in our immediate future, Glengoyne was kind enough to share a nip of their 21 year old with us for review. This single malt is drawn entirely from sherry casks, predominantly first fill European oak. Let’s kick the tires on it, shall we?

The aroma is well-balanced with plenty of honeyed distillery character shining through, despite the first fill aging, which can sometimes result in an overbearing sherry character. That’s not to say there isn’t plenty of sherry influence here, but it’s exceptionally well-balanced. Enrobing notes of chewy malts and shortbread are deep, fruity complements of candy apple, fig jam, and almond torte.

As things open up, a heavily caramelized sugar note, almost toasted, takes hold, giving things even more of a dessert-inspired aroma. The palate is even more impressive with a similarly well-balanced sherry profile of currants, dark berry cobbler, and raw honey. It’s not as nutty as some sherried single malts, with more of a fruity, simple syrup sweetness, very subtly smoked, that carries beautifully and consistently across the palate. The finish is long and warming with a brief flourish of baking spice that erodes into lingering notes of raspberry jam, orange marmalade, and soft oak. A solid value for an older single malt of such impressive quality.

86 proof.


Glengoyne 21 Years Old




Drew Beard is assistant editor for Drinkhacker and winner of several booze-related merit badges, including Certified Specialist in Spirits and Executive Bourbon Steward. A former federal employee turned hotelier and spirits journalist, he looks forward to his next midlife crisis.

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