Slowly but surely, we’re getting around to the full portfolio of single malts from Glen Scotia Distillery. Their neighbor Springbank remains the better known Campbeltown distillery, but with a growing presence stateside and a widening portfolio of both premium, well-aged offerings and impressive NAS bottlings like Victoriana, the word is certainly getting out. Today, we’re taking a look at Double Cask Rum Finish and a cask strength, limited edition 12-year-old expression. Thoughts follow.
Glen Scotia Double Cask Rum Finish – This non-age-stated single malt is something of a line extension with the original Double Cask we tasted way back in 2017. Like that whisky, it has been initially aged in first fill bourbon barrels, but in place of the PX finish this one gets an 8-month finish in Demerara rum barrels. It makes for a uniquely light and bright, almost refreshing, single malt. The nose is gently sweet with a mix of barley sugar and rich simple syrup. That sweetness gets a little more caramelized as things open up but never really exceeds light brown with a sprinkle of sea salt in the mix. It’s not overly fruity for a rum finish, offering up subtle hints of sugary pineapple and coconut macaroon. The palate is clean and airy with more lightly caramelized sugar and notes of grilled stone fruit, shredded coconut, and plantain chips. A gingery, warming spice arrives on the midpalate and extends into a gentle, generous finish of salted melon and butterscotch. 92 proof. A- / $60
Glen Scotia Limited Edition 12 Years Old Seasonal Release 2022 – Unusually, the youngest age-stated offering in the Glen Scotia lineup gets an annual limited-edition treatment. This 2022 release is an unpeated single malt aged 12 years in ex-bourbon casks before a 12-month finish in Amontillado sherry casks. Bottled without chill filtration and at cask strength. The aroma is quite savory with salted crackers, honey roasted almonds, and brown butter. A subtle bit of dark fruit cobbler, still buttery and doughy, offers the only sign of something sugary. The palate opens with a bit more sweetness, but it’s still restrained with a rich, malty foundation and lots of fresh grated baking spice. Toffee and flaky pastry notes arrive midpalate with a gentle, warming spice that erodes elegantly into a long, sherried finish of almond cookies, dried apricot, and white pepper. Impressively approachable and engaging, and it’s reasonably priced for a cask strength, limited edition single malt of this quality. 106.6 proof. A- / $100